What is a project manager?

Simple to define, really: its the person responsible for delivery of the project.

A person with this title holds the responsibly for the planning and execution of the project, and for the guiding of the process.

The Wikipedia entry for project manager gives us “A project manager is a professional in the field of project management.”

Here is a link to the APM definition for project management, which states “Project management is the process by which projects are defined, planned, monitored, controlled and delivered such that the agreed benefits are realised. Projects are unique, transient endeavours undertaken to achieve a desired outcome. Projects bring about change and project management is recognised as the most efficient way of managing such change.”

The Project Manager differs from a general managerial position because skills and expertise are needed to deliver something which may be new to the business and never attempted before. The project is not classed as “business as usual”; therefore a new team is required to deliver the requirements of the project. The project manager not only has expertise in the process of delivering projects (initiating the project, planning the work, pulling together and managing a team, ensuring the project implementation is successful etc) but will also use tried and tested techniques, tools and in some cases methodologies like PRINCE2.

Skill sets for the project manager include;

  • Planning ability
  • Stakeholder management
  • Team management
  • Scope management
  • Risk Management
  • Issue Management
  • Leadership
  • Change Management
  • Monitoring and controlling

There are other titles which are very similar to “Project Manager”, these include;

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