Project Manager Job Description (Free Download with applicant notes)

This is a free Job Description with notes on what to say to blow your interviewer away! This job description lists the things employers are looking for and what to say to show you are their ideal candidate! Free to Download in Word and PDF.
Job Description for a Project Manager with applicant notes
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Employers have a set of phrases that they want to hear when they are looking to hire a project manager. They will ask you to demonstrate your knowledge and experience of project principles e.g. the iron triangle of scope, quality and time,risk management, planning, change control, and leadership.

Most interviewers will ask you questions designed to assess your competency in each area for example, "can you tell me about a time when a customer asked you to change something? What did you do?". The best way to prepare is by reading the job description and coming up with an example to demonstrate your competence in each area. WE have prepared some suggestions for you!

Job description with notes on how to show you would make the perfect person for the job!

Main purpose of job

To take ownership, control and responsibility of the projects to ensure they are delivered to customer satisfaction, are fit for purpose, on schedule and to budget, whilst maintaining quality control always.
Have a couple of examples of projects you managed to end to end. Describe the scope, budget, timelines and how you ensured the project was delivered successfully.
Your examples don’t have to be perfect but should showcase how you resolved issues and used change control to keep things on track. A project that went over budget is okay if that was due to an increase in scope that you managed via change control.

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Key responsibilities

  • Develop and maintain effective working relationships with customers, gaining acceptance to proposals and changes
    List customers you have worked with, if you can, give examples of working with sales or proposals you have made e.g. to resolve an issue, make a change etc. For example,
    "I have worked with customers from different industries and geographies, delivering projects at departmental level as well as global transformation programs. Through my experience in x I am seen as a trusted advisor which helps me to gain acceptance for our bespoke solutions."
  • Ensure effective hand over of projects from Sales to Production.
    Give an example of how you gather information from sales prior to starting a project. For example, "I meet with the account manager to review the statement of work. I find out who the key contacts are, what their business case is and why the customer chose to work with us."
  • Manage a virtual project team to develop solutions that are fit for purpose and achievable within the budget and schedule
    Describe how you manage/would manage a virtual team and what tools you would use. E.g. Skype, screensharing, video conferencing, regular catch up calls, daily stand ups etc.
  • Manage Time and Materials and fixed price project budgets.
    Explain how you manage/would manage a project budget and the tools you would use. E.g. a spreadsheet linked to the project WBS & schedule showing hours x day rates, or project software.
  • Develop, control and manage the project schedule.
    Describe how you develop the schedule. E.g. you breakdown the work with the project team, work out in what order the tasks need to happen, estimate duration, allocate resources and calculate the critical path. Include the tools you would use e.g. Microsoft Project.
  • Ensure that risks are identified and managed, implementing effective risk responses to minimise the project’s exposure to risk.
    Explain how you manage risk for example:
    “I hold periodic risk identification workshops with the project team, we document & analyze any risks on the risk register. We agree a risk owner along with the best way to reduce the likelihood of the risk occurring or the impact if it does occur. I then monitor progress via my weekly project calls."
  • This role requires up to 75% travel.
    There is no way to answer this apart from saying “yes that is fine” if you can also say “I am used to that through my role at x” even better. 75% travel often appears on project management JDs and it sounds like a lot, but it is rarely actually needed. For the interview just say “yes all good” you can negotiate when you are in the job!

Skill Range

The examples and answers you prepare for the key responsibilities will help demonstrate the skills. We have given you some hints and links to helpful guides.

  • Excellent project management skills
    Here you can describe one of your successful projects or share any juicy feedback you have from customers or your boss. For example,
    "I led the Aurora project from start up to close. It was a complex project for a top customer who wanted to achieve x% ROI by automating their invoicing process. I made sure the requirements were crystal clear, chose a great team, and created a realistic project plan. By keeping the customer focused on the Business Case I avoided scope creep and delivered the project to time, cost and scope. The customer has been live x months and has already met their ROI."
    "in my last performance appraisal my boss described me as a dedicated and hard working project manager with an ability to make managing complex projects for tough customers look easy."
  • Strong communication and written skills
    Your communication and written skills will be self-evident through your CV and the interview. If asked about communication skills you could talk about tailoring your message to the audience, using clear English and whether you communicate differently depending on the location and knowledge of your client. For example, avoiding colloquialisms and explaining technical terms.
  • Ability to develop and maintain good customer relationships
    Describe how you work with customers for example,
    “I listen, understand their goals, worries & pain points. I work out how we can help them look good by providing quick wins they can share in their team. I focus on being a trusted advisor. I advise & guide rather than just saying yes.”
  • Extensive customer facing experience at senior levels
    Here you just need to ‘name drop’. E.g.
    “I presented to the Project Board monthly. I ran workshops attended by the C suite. I produce reports for the steering committee”.
  • Ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines. Ability to ensure quality and maintain a customer focus
    Prepare an example of how you worked under pressure, what you did to reduce stress, how you organised yourself and any tools you used e.g. To Do list, Microsoft Project, OneNote, Evernote, MS Teams etc.
  • Awareness of current best practice within the project management industry.
    Check the latest from Project Management Institute (PMI) or Association of Project Management (APMP).
  • Record of delivering a variety projects in different sectors.
    List the companies/industries you have worked with. If you haven’t got much variety think about suppliers, and projects outside of work.
  • Ability to manage, lead and motivate a project team
    For example,
    "I motivate the team by sharing the big picture with them, introducing them to the customer face to face and by holding a kick-off event.’ Or ‘consultants like working with me because, I always celebrate wins with the team and I let their bosses know about a job done well."

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