career in project management

According to the Project Management Skills Report 2013 conducted by the PMI, total employment for project management professionals is expected to increase significantly across the globe by 2020. Career opportunities for project management professionals are even expected to grow by up to 60% in some regions.

As far as skill sets go, project management is now seen as the top employee skill set by many industries. John Lannon, Director of the Online Masters in Project and Programme Management at the University of Limerick, explains the 3 reasons why demand for professionals with project management skills is soaring across all industries.

1. A new appreciation for project management

As businesses shape themselves for the future, more and more of their operations are being driven by projects. Many companies, particularly those who suffered during the global recession, are looking for professionals who can execute projects strategically to improve their bottom line.

Companies who have been burnt from resisting an agile approach to business in the past, now realise the importance of effective project management in maximising business efficiency. It is integral to the success of the business and as such, skilled, project management professionals are essential among their workforce.

“The project management skills and knowledge acquired through studying the MSc in Project & Programme Management with U.L. led to me being approached by a large hotel group to take on a project management role for their revenue & I.T. function. They are hoping to expand their group of 20 properties over the coming years and realised the need for strong project management skills.”

Lloyd Hartnett, 2013 Graduate of the MSc in Project & Programme Management  at U.L.

2. Incredibly powerful skillset

Project management professionals offer a unique mix of business, technical and leadership skills. Their incredibly powerful skillset includes strong multitasking ability, analytical thinking and excellent communication skills. To manage projects successfully, requires a strong level of decisiveness, forward thinking and organisational skills too.

Professionals with such a compelling skillset can bring valuable impact to several business areas. They have the ability to emerge as true leaders, not just for projects, but to lead and motivate teams. They are well versed with goal setting, time management and problem solving and their skill sets can be useful in various departments of the business, be it finance, operations, marketing, H.R. etc.

3. Project management….not just for project managers

Project managers have always been key employees in industries such as construction, engineering, architecture, manufacturing, I.T. and real estate. However, the need for project management skills no longer solely lies with dedicated project manager roles. Many opportunities for professionals with project management skills exist outside these areas as the scope of project based organisations continues to grow.

For example, in biotech or pharmaceutical companies, project management skills are essential when launching new products, developing new technologies or applications and managing collaborative projects with strategic partners. In the financial services industry, insurance companies and banks also require professionals with strong project management skills to manage the implementation of new standards or practices across multiple locations.

We have had hotel managers undertake the Masters in Project Management at the University of Limerick, as to learn how to manage projects, you must also learn how to manage people and manage risk. Undertaking a Masters in Project Management proves a wise choice for any management professional from any industry, as effective management of people and risk management is a key element of their role.

 “I do not hold a dedicated Project Manager role, but have found that I apply many principles from PM methodologies to my every day role. Undertaking a Masters in Project Management has helped me to ensure the successful management and delivery of projects and tasks on a daily basis and that I best utilise the available resources in an appropriate fashion to get the job done. While project management may not be a required competency for hotels, the structure, methodology and discipline that it offers is definitely invaluable.”

Lloyd Hartnett, Graduate of the MSc in Project & Programme Management  at U.L.

Supply does not meet demand

Despite career opportunities flourishing, the demand for professionals with project management skills is simply not matched by the availability of relevant personnel. There has never been a more compelling need for current management professionals or aspiring managers to commit themselves to acquiring project management skills and knowledge.

Progress your career with a Masters in Project Management

Pursuing a Masters in Project Management can greatly broaden career opportunities, strengthen your position in your current role and enable you to offer significant value to your organisation. The MSc in Project & Programme Management at the University of Limerick is a PMI-GAC accredited, Level 9 Masters programme and is delivered 100% online.

The course content is practical and highly relevant; what you learn today, you can apply tomorrow in your current organisation. Apply online now or get in touch with the UL CPM team if you have any queries about the course.

“The course offers wider business and organisational skills and knowledge beyond just Project Management skills. It is excellent to help accelerate your career into more strategic and management roles. As a result of studying the MSc in Project & Programme Management, I secured a permanent role at Boston Scientific, which then led to my current position as VP of another company.”

Trevor Donnellan, Graduate of the MSc in Project & Programme Management at U.L.

Article written by Dr. John Lannon, Director of the Masters in Project and Programme Management at the University of Limerick

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