What Do Project Managers Do?

The project manager is “the person assigned by the performing organization to lead the team responsible for achieving the project objectives” (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, (PMBOK® Guide) – Sixth Edition, Project Management Institute Inc., 2017, p.582). The success of a project manager is when the project objectives have been achieved. 

In short, project managers plan, execute, control, and complete projects. However, that is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are some major project manager responsibilities:

- Build the plan: Project managers are responsible for figuring out the most applicable roadmap for the project. The plan must include the project scope, timeline, budget, or even the right tool for the task.
- Assemble the team: Finding the right person or people to accomplish the task is essential. 
- Leading the team: After the team has been assembled and the tasks have been assigned, the project manager must keep the machine well-oiled.
- Managing budget: Knowing how to make use of a project budget and managing cost is essential for success.
- Managing timelines: As with the budget, project managers are tasked with keeping everything on schedule so that the team meets their projected deadlines for completion.
- Engaging stakeholders: Stakeholders play a large role in your project. Project managers need to maintain a good relationship and an open line of communication with stakeholders.
- Handing over the project: Once the project’s objectives have been delivered, project manager must hand it over to another team who will be maintaining it.
- Documenting the process: Identifying and documenting “lesson learned” helps other teams avoid making the same mistakes, or taking advantage of shortcuts discovered.

Project Manager Certifications

Earning a certification allows you to shoulder more responsibilities at higher levels within your company, and often leads to a salary boost, as well. The Project Management Professional (PMP) is the most popular certification, and is run by the Project management Institute (PMI), but it’s not the only certification available. Here are just a few of the other options:

  1. Program Management Professional (PgMP)®
  2. Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP)®
  3. PMI Professional in Business Analysist (PMI-PBA)®
  4. PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)®
  5. PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP)®
  6. PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP)®

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