Essential Skills the Best IT Project Managers Possess


Project management is a booming field. Whether you’re new to project management or you’re a seasoned vet looking for new opportunities, these are the ten essential skills that employers are looking for when hiring project managers.

Project Definition

Never underestimate the power of planning. Time spend on advanced planning can help reduce costs and maintain your calendar from start to finish. Talk about how you use a project definition document to guide your process.

Planning Horizon

Once you have defined the project and its course, you want to make a workplan. Always talk about your process for developing instructions for project deliverables and project management. Whether you use a work breakdown structure, or a prior workplan as a model, or a different approach, talk about your process for mapping a project horizon.

Project Management Procedures

When it comes to project management, the devil is in the details. Strong PMs map out the way the team will approach scope change, risk, quality assurance, communication, etc., throughout the project.  Show your commitment to adhering to organizational procedures and developing new procedures based on the needs of a project.

Workplan, Schedule and Budget Management

Just as it is critical to demonstrate your commitment to planning, you also must demonstrate the way you manage a project once work begins. Adhering to the plan is often easier said than done, so discuss your specific strategies for ensuring the project sticks to your defined workplan, schedule and budget.

Anticipating Problems

Effective project managers know what warning signs to look for so they can run interference before a problem arises.  Talk about warning signs like small variances in schedule or budget, decreased team morale, underwhelming deliverable quality, a quality control snag, etc. Always be prepared to discuss your approach to dealing with those warning signs quickly and effectively.

Adherence to Scope-Change Requests

Managing scope is an essential skill for any project manager. Even if you have strong scope management procedures in place, you can almost always count on some type of scope issue. One of the best ways to manage scope is to ensure that the sponsor (funder) of the project signs off on all scope-change requests. Sticking to this policy religiously shows that you know who butters the bread on a project and that you take the scope, timeline and budget seriously on all projects.

Risk Management

If you really want to impress a hiring manager, talk about your risk management skills. Discuss the way you identify all known risks on a project and your ability to analyze the probability of that risk occurring and the impact on outcomes. Address the ways you identify new risks throughout the course of the project and the way you develop plant so mitigate against them.

Are You Looking For Project Management Jobs?

If you are an IT project manager in Boston looking for new career opportunities, contact FootBridge today. Our professional recruiters can connect you with some of the most innovative and dynamic companies in the country. Together, we can help you achieve your career goals.


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