Right from the beginning, you must have heard the buzzword ‘project’ everywhere at your workplace.
Do you know what a project is?
A project is a task or a set of multiple tasks that exist to be completed in the given period in order to meet specific goals. You cannot complete this task alone. You need someone to assist you. A particular project needs a specialized Project Manager. We need some people to execute the job. And here, we need a project manager and a team to complete a task. Projects exist in every industry including design, development, IT, Telecom, etc. and they all come with one similar goal – delivering the project on time.
However, what do you understand by a project manager and a project manager’s responsibilities? various steps required to become an IT project manager. Let’s find out what does a project manager does.
Who is a Project Manager?
A project manager is the leader of a project.
Project managers must ensure what is the situation of a project right now and when they have to submit that in a given deadline. They look at offering a project without flaws. They handle all projects from initiation to delivery. Here you will understand what a project manager does and especially about an IT project manager.
Roles and responsibilities of a Project Manager
The functions and duties of a manager depend on a company to company. A project manager is subject to change as per the project requirement. However, there are core responsibilities that a project manager might handle. Here are specific project manager jobs in Project management:
Before starting a project, a project manager has to plan out what the project is all about. Creating a roadmap is the first and foremost duty of the Project manager. Because a project plan will be under consideration to select or not. In this phase, the manager has to look at certain factors, including the task to complete, who will be doing this task, and what is the deadline for the job.
Now if the planned project is selected, the next step for the job description of a project manager is how he and his team will conduct a task. He will plan what to perform in the next phase. The next mission is to start implementing the project idea. A project manager will distribute duties to the team members about a particular plan. He will give a brief description of the tools one can use. Consider an IT project. A manager will first look for the resources required in the project. He will use his Project Management skills and take his leadership role. Then the manager will distribute the tools to collaborate and meet them regularly and ask what problems they face and suggest a particular solution.
Leading and time management:
Leading is the most crucial role of a project manager. It consists of other duties of a project manager. A project manager should know how to coordinate with several people that would ensure that the project must go adequately. A leader knows how to manage time for a particular task. He will ask his team members to complete a job. He must make team members follow some actions and conduct regular meetings. Leading also means to take decisions and monitor them regularly. A manager must think of the issues that can arise in a task. An IT Project manager will conduct knowledge of technical problems associated with a project.
The project manager must know everything on his toes. He must make sure that the task he leads is on a perfect track. He must also consider the tools are being used properly or not. It will help him to think that he can complete a task in a given time frame. Many IT project managers even use the following steps:
Monitoring does not mean to impose your decision on someone. Today, a project gets completed with the collaboration of a manager and its team members. Hence it is better to pay a contribution to a project rather than dictating what must be done.
One cannot forget communication as an essential factor to have a successful project. It is crucial because project managers spend their 90% time in communicating with team members. It will also raise how a project manager plays a particular role in his ability to communicate with others. Communication is not only with the team members but also to interact with others. A project manager has to make many decisions and to discuss he has to communicate with others.
Managing the risks:
It is not very specific that a project will run very smoothly. However, the risk is the most crucial part of a project. They will surely come when something is under processing. Hence, it is essential to manage these conditions which might bring something negative in the project. Along with the monitoring of team members and the project situation, a project manager also have to consider what risks his project might face in the future. It is most important to manage risk within a given time limit.
What is the function of a project manager to handle risk?
In risk management, relevant topics are to identify threats and thus have proper development. Specific risks that an IT project manager has to handle is like a team member leaves the company which might pull out project. The next job description of a project manager is to develop and take action in such cases. He must have alternative solutions to the problems.
The best to mitigate risk is to communicate appropriately. A project manager should inform others about the dangers he is facing. In many cases, it also involves handling a task and also optimize the risk. At last, a project manager must ensure if the risk is adequately implemented as envisioned.
What are the responsibilities of a management team?
So far, we have discussed the roles of a project manager. Now we will look at the responsibilities of a project management team. The main priority a manager must give is to assign the task to the team members. Now, team members must make sure that they complete that task at a particular time. If any member faces a change or an issue, then they must inform their leader immediately.
If a team member is also on the role of an expert, then he must not wait to make changes and ask the team leader first. He can take small decisions on his own. But if the team members do not agree upon a particular choice, then it might cause delays in the project or failure of a project. Hence they should work with the team members and treat everyone with respect.
If a project is significant, then some team members can play the role of team leaders. It helps them in better coordination between the team members. It helps on-time delivery of a project.
What makes the best project manager?
A project manager makes sure to do his work on time and meet clients’ needs. He must know how to communicate with the team members, clients, and stakeholders at project initiation. He must know how to meet the needs of the business. For a successful project manager, he must be able to take a detail of the project and see its big picture. He must be capable of handling risk, excellent communication skills, a performer attitude, ability to motivate and inspire the team members, and many other project manager skills.
Project Manager Job Descriptions
There are many types of project manager job descriptions, including IT project manager, general project manager, and the senior-level project manager job descriptions.
IT Project Manager
An IT project manager knows how to develop and manage the projects with their time, cost, and scope. The responsibilities of an IT project manager includes a communication plan, project plan, setting milestone, and allocating the tasks.
Responsibilities of an IT project manager
- Creating a proper project plan
- Defining the schedules, allocating resources, and monitoring the process
- Align the company goals and objectives of the project. A team member must be transparent with its intentions.
- Delivering and installing the solutions
- Help the project team with development tasks and design
- Lead the process if resolution along with identification
- Managing the risk tracking
- Manage and monitor the scope
- Work on many projects at one time consistently
- Managing the documentation
- Partnership with the customer/sponsors/stakeholders
- 3+ years experience in the project management in IT
- ITIL preferred certification. PMP certification necessary
- Detailed information
- Thrives in the collaborating environment
- Good communicating skills
- Experience in IT and Business
- The mindset must be customer-focused
- Knowledge about software tools
IT Project Management
It is a process to plan, organize, and to complete the responsibility of a given project meeting the information technology goals. It includes overseeing projects for software development, network upgrades, virtualization rollouts, hardware installations, data management, business analytics, and thus finally implementing the IT Services.
Common problems and other risks to a project might cause its failure. Therefore, it leads to hurting the success of the IT project. There will be an advancement in technology when you execute a plan. If the technology is not used before, then, it would be difficult for your company to implement and thus affects the success of the project.
Managing a project
There are several steps in the management of a project, as discussed above. The same steps follow for the roles and responsibilities of an IT Project Manager. However, the resources and plan, implementation, execution, control and monitoring, and risk mitigation are all different for different projects.
Management of Project Knowledge areas
There are around ten project management knowledge areas. These areas will give a detail of actions to be completed by a project manager in the whole project. The areas for project management are:
Project scope management: the scope of the project is well detailed, documented, and approved. The scope of the project is all safe as edited with approval, protection from unauthorized changes, and project validation by stakeholders for acceptance.
Project schedule management: The project schedule is according to the working hours of the project. The team members and their availability are all documented in the whole procedure and thus planned. The manager will work with the entire team to identify its tasks and make duration estimations to create the timeline.
Project cost management: cost is the primary factor to look at it. The cost estimation is according to the budget of the project. It includes pricing of services, material, software license, facilities, materials, and many other expenses.
Project quality management: the quality of a project is according to specific metrics and agreement of the stakeholders for the timely submission of a project. Quality assurance policies and programs will direct the project. Quality control will find that quality is maintained in the job.
Project human resource management: the manager will work with team members to check if they are working correctly for timely submission or not. They have to report for the working of team members to the manager.
Project risk management: risk is the situation that would threaten or might benefit you at the same time. You can identify, analyze, and create a response to threats. It will define the cost required to mitigate or manage the risk.
Project communications management: the stakeholders would require information from the manager and thus provide information to him throughout the project. The knowledge area will create communication between the team members, the project manager, and other stakeholders. They will discuss what information is to give to whom. Also, they will discuss when to provide specific details.
Project procurement management: A manager will look if he needs some services or goods for a project or not. Then he will discuss purchasing that process. It is a widespread and formal process to carry out in any project. The planning is all on the selection of contract type, purchasing of audits, administration of the contract, and closing of the project. Many of the managers do not manage this, but they control the centralized procurement process.
Project stakeholder management: Stakeholders are those who have a good interest in some projects. The administration is inclusion, identification, and communication in the stakeholder groups. It also cares for the anxiety and the concerns that a stakeholder might have in any project.
Project integration management: it is an area of coordination of some events. If a project manager works appropriately in a particular project, then it will inevitably affect company reputation and project performance. Otherwise, it would leave an adverse impact on the people. The manager will examine contingencies and integration in the knowledge areas that would ensure if a specific project is under proper planning, execution, control, and then closed or not.
These are the ten main factors that a manager needs to look at throughout his ongoing project. However, there is no explicitly defined area to which a manager will first manage or at last. It is all according to the appropriate knowledge and the processes that would be occurring in the Project Management process.
What is the IT project life cycle?
There could be many approaches to managing the project. These could affect the life cycle of the project. An organization can choose one path out of these that might reduce high work risk. The life cycle of an IT project moves through all the phases from planning, execution, and controlling. However, then also you might find three IT project life cycles.
- Predictive life cycle: It is the most traditional life cycle form. It is the case of defining a project, scheduling it, and plan its cost. Planning is the foremost required part of the project life cycle.
- Iterative life cycle: In this, project management is to be defined as early possible in a project. However, the activity duration and cost estimation are at high project planning.
- Adaptive life cycle: It uses both planning and execution. The planning part might last for only two weeks. There might be sudden changes in the plan you have done with time for the project development. Scrum and Agile project management are part of the adaptive life cycle.
However, these three primary life cycle processes are to have a good concept for project work. A phase will define the work that would take place in a specific project. However, the requirements of customers and the organization will help a project manager to think about what he must follow in a project.
Is there a need for a project manager?
It does not matter if a project is small or big; we need a reliable and consistent efficiency in the work. 89% of the organization work on a project with the project manager. It is essential to have a successful business. The business owners require one leader who has the correct vision to handle some projects. He must be able to face risks which is the biggest challenge to a project manager. He makes sure the project is on time and according to the schedule. Therefore, if you want to have a successful organization, then it is better to have a project manager.
If you’re working toward your PMP certification, you know there’s a lot to learn. If you want a successful project, it does not all depend upon the project leader. It is a complete team effort to support you. However, the responsibilities and roles assigned might be big or small, that does not matter. But the people working in it should be determined to be successful in it. It is an effort from their side to have success in the project. The project team and project manager are like two faces of a coin that go hand in hand. Thus, to have a successful project, it is whole teamwork along with project manager to show efficiency in it.