A project manager is a person that is responsible for the successful completion of a project, in accordance with a set of specifications. As you can probably tell, there’s a lot of responsibility that comes with the job title of a project manager. The following article will look at some of those responsibilities and what they require from a project manager.
1. Developing Plans
The first responsibility of a project manager is developing plans. These plans would include but are not limited to developing and maintaining project schedules and baselines, determining and managing scope against the work completed, and identifying risks that could prevent the completion of the project on time while staying within budget.
Implementing change can be a challenge, and it requires the skills and experience of a project manager to be able to direct the process effectively. If you’ve earned your graduate certificate of change management online, or in a traditional setting, then you know that it takes skills to manage expectations and to successfully create changes that are innovational. The objective of implementing change is always to improve, and as such, every change requires the development of a plan.
This plan should include what needs to happen, why it needs to happen, how it will be done and by whom, who will be impacted by the change, and, of course, how the change will be evaluated.
Another responsibility of a project manager is budgeting. As you can imagine, project managers are responsible for estimating how much each part of the project will cost. This includes both direct costs (labor) and indirect costs (materials).
With this information, the project manager then ensures that the estimates are accurate by developing a detailed plan on how work will be completed. Anyone can create a good plan with unlimited funds, but a good manager will find ways to save money while delivering on the results. Once the plan is in place, the project manager can then begin to assess if the estimate was accurate by comparing it against completed work.
If there are variances between what was estimated and what has been completed, adjustments must be made to account for them appropriately.
3. Delegating Responsibilities
A common theme among project managers is that they have a lot on their plate. For instance, one responsibility of a project manager would be to delegate responsibilities to individuals in an organization.
This ensures that everyone is accountable for the work that needs to happen, relieving pressure from the project manager. More specifically, delegation would include identifying roles and assigning tasks to specific individuals or teams. Being able to identify roles and delegate responsibilities is key to ensuring that projects are completed efficiently.
Being able to appoint the right person is a part of it. However, the responsibility of removing someone from the project is also part of a manager’s responsibility. Profiles of project managers who have been successful in managing projects will show that they are able to fire employees for the good of a project, company, or industry.
4. Managing Stakeholders
A project manager should be able to manage stakeholders, which is a pretty broad term that simply means everyone who has an interest in seeing the project completed.
Since many projects involve several stakeholders, it’s important for a project manager to know how to manage them and ensure they are getting what they want out of the project while staying within budget and meeting deadlines. This requires strong communication skills and the ability to align expectations. Some of these stakeholders will be internal, meaning that they are employees of the company that is running the project.
Others may be external, meaning that they work for another business or organization altogether. Project managers must know how to effectively collaborate with all types of people and businesses in order to make projects successful.
5. Setting Individual Goals
Another responsibility of a project manager is to set individual goals. Such goals will be tied directly to the tasks that each person has been assigned during the planning phase of the project.
It’s important for everyone who is working on a project to know exactly what it is that they are expected to do, and how their contributions are going to have an impact on the overall success of the project. Establishing individual goals will help ensure that everyone understands what is expected of them, and can make sure they are accountable for their work.
This contributes to building accountability within an organization, which will lead to more successful projects in the future.
6. Managing Project Risks
As with any business, there will be risks that need to be accounted for when completing a project. A project manager needs to know how to manage such risks and ensure that mistakes resulting from them are caught early on in the process.
An example of a project risk could be an employee quitting before the end of a project. As projects progress, it becomes more and more important for a manager to identify these risks and make sure they are accounted for appropriately. This will help prevent potential problems from arising in the future and ensure that deadlines aren’t missed as a result of such risks.
7. Producing Project Status Reports
In a way, a project manager is a bridge between different departments. They need to be able to communicate effectively between upper management, employees, and clients. One way this is accomplished is by producing status reports on a regular basis, This allows the team to remain transparent about what is going on. It also ensures that those who are working on a project will stay motivated and accountable for their work. It’s an important responsibility of a project manager because it keeps everyone informed on where the project stands and allows higher-ups to make changes where necessary in order for the project to be completed successfully.
8. Identifying Success Criteria
One of the last responsibilities of a project manager is identifying success criteria for each individual task, phase, and the overall project itself. Such criteria will need to be established in order to measure whether or not objectives have been met when it comes time to complete a project.
This makes it possible for managers to complete the project and then review what has been accomplished in order to determine whether or not what was built will meet the needs of stakeholders. This includes meeting all requirements for a project, such as minimizing risk and achieving maximum efficiency.
A project manager is held accountable for a number of different factors on any given project. In order to make sure projects are completed successfully, it’s necessary to have someone who can manage everyone involved and ensure that they meet deadlines while keeping within budget. While management styles may vary, it’s always necessary to have someone who is ultimately responsible for the success of a project.