How To Become A Project Manager: The 2024 Guide

Discover the essentials of becoming a project manager in 2024 with our comprehensive guide, covering skills, certifications, and practical tips. As a project manager, you will be tackling complex problems and planning multiple streams of work on a daily basis. It takes a good amount of experience to feel comfortable working on how to become a project manager a busy, multi-department project. It takes even more experience to be able to lead the project and manage all stakeholders through the process towards successful completion. As a new graduate you’ll probably begin your career in a junior project manager or assistant project manager position and work your way up the ladder.

  • If you want to pursue your project manager education but you don’t yet feel ready to fully commit, take one of the many online project management courses available on platforms like Udemy or Coursera.
  • You can also look for conferences or local networking events that will help you to stay on top of new industry trends and meet people who can help you navigate the project management career path.
  • It’s aimed at people who already have project management experience (at least 4,500-7,500 hours of it, to be specific), as well as either 35 hours of project management education or a CAPM certification.

It allows you to automate your work, quickly assign tasks to groups of teams, and easily view projects in Gantt charts, as well as being able to manage all of your project resources from one place. You can also read the latest news and blogs such as ‘How do I become a project manager? Register with us to receive the latest available project positions from top employers. Coursera’s editorial team is comprised of highly experienced professional editors, writers, and fact… Jobs in project management are available across all sectors, from business, marketing, finance and law to transport, manufacturing and engineering.

Hard skills for project managers

Completing these qualifications before finding employment isn’t necessary, as most employers provide new recruits with on-the-job training. Having a defined specialization may make it easier to find jobs in the field. Instead, the PM ensures that team members do the right things in the right order at the right times, monitoring the project’s progress all through execution. The project manager usually doesn’t do much (or any) of the actual work of the project.

how to become a project manager

If you’ve been the go-to person in a project to reorganise an office, or have been given the role of leading work towards a new compliance audit, then you may have built many of the skills involved in project management. To begin a career as a project manager, you need to gain new competencies, understand project management approaches and methodologies, and complete project manager certifications. We’ll help you take right steps for your project management career journey. Attending events and networking can help you learn from other project professionals across a variety of sectors and develop your career potential. There are many entry level jobs available such as assistant project manager or project assistant, or you could consider an apprenticeship. Become a project manager by building skills and experience, earning a certification, or working your way up on a team.

How to become a project manager

With a strong plan in place, it’s time to actually do the work of the project. This is the execution phase, where the team members build, make, and do all the things, following the project plan and project roadmap. Within planning and initiation, project managers lead, execute, or assist with four areas. It all depends on what processes and frameworks your industry (and company) prefers to use — so do your research, talk to others in the field, and decide what the best agile certification for you is. Unlike the PMP, it doesn’t have the same prerequisites, so it might be more suited to someone looking for a PM grounding at the beginning of their project management career.

There are project management degrees and master’s degrees in UK universities that provide you with the knowledge, skills, and training you need to be a project manager. However, a lot of project managers find themselves on the project leadership career path after showing aptitude on projects, without a specific degree. Whether you have a degree or not, there are certain steps that you need to take to become a project manager. If you’re trying to build up project management skills, try looking for opportunities in your current work.

TL;DR: The steps to becoming a project manager

Whether you work in a hospital or retail store, tech company or restaurant, chances are there are several items that need to be planned, executed, or improved. If it makes sense to do so, approach your manager with ideas of how you can contribute, and let them know you’re interested in developing project management experience. Common majors for project managers include project management, business and related fields. Aspiring project managers who plan to work in a specific field like health services or information technology should pursue a bachelor’s degree in that field. Project management is among the most valuable skill sets in the current job landscape. As mentioned earlier, many project managers work their way up into management from more junior project roles.

PMI is the primary organization offering professional certifications in project management. The institute offers certifications in a wide variety of specialties. This indicates a talent gap in the project management field, meaning there are not enough candidates with the right skills to meet this high demand. Using a PM tool can help you to develop your project manager experience. See if you can find a mentor who’ll teach you their project manager tips. Take a look at ways to build your skill base and take on more responsibility in your career.

Project managers in the U.S. earn a median annual salary of $115,000, according to a 2022 jobs report by PMI. In a 2021 talent gap report, PMI projected that the global economy would have to add 25 million project management professionals to meet demand by 2030. This amounts to a 28% growth in employment from 2019 to 2030 worldwide. Finding the right project management tool will help you to put everything you’ve learned in your project manager education into practice. It allows you to oversee your projects with more clarity, forecast more accurately, manage your resources more efficiently, and report more precisely. While a degree in project management will qualify you for the job, it’s the additional knowledge gained through professional qualifications, conversion courses and online learning that will help you to progress.

how to become a project manager

It also comes in both Foundation and Practitioner flavors for every stage of your project management journey. While the PMP certification is knowledge-based — i.e., it focuses on general project management knowledge and best practices for each stage of the project — the PRINCE2 is project- and process-based method in and of itself. Not only will it make more job opportunities available to you and give you a higher earning power, but it will also teach you some project management best practices and techniques that you might not otherwise have been exposed to. Using a flexible and intuitive project management tool like to manage your work also means that you can get up and running without needing to spend a ton of time on training or onboarding. Agile and Scrum are also much sought-after qualifications and have particular relevance in software development and other incremental IT projects. A career as a project manager can be exciting, varied, fulfilling, and productive.

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