Project Management Consultant Job Description
Project management consultants play the role of advisor, planner, and leader in working with internal and external clients to devise and implement solutions related to process or quality improvement. They are a valuable resource to stakeholders seeking to identify and correct inefficiencies in workflow and processes. These consultants may handle complex initiatives tied to a specific business unit or for enterprise-wide projects, often working on multiple projects simultaneously. Analytical, organized multitaskers with business knowledge are strong candidates for this role.
Project Management Consultant Duties and Responsibilities
Project management consultants play a lead role in project planning and implementation. Some of the main duties associated with this role include:
Hold Preplanning Meetings
Before a project is started, a contract must be created and reviewed, and detailed plans must be drafted. These steps are necessary so that all involved parties understand a project’s goals and expectations. It is the project management consultant’s responsibility to hold the preplanning meeting at which these activities are done.
Make On-Site Customer Visits
After the contract has been signed and detailed plans made, project management consultants visit the client on-site to review the process and make suggestions. Periodic visits are also made to check on the progress of the project to ensure things are going as planned.
Procure Hardware and Third-Party Software
New process implementation often requires companies to utilize new hardware and software, and it’s part of the project management consultant’s job to locate and purchase these items.
Maintain Industry Knowledge
It is important that project management consultants stay informed on current and emerging trends and developments so that they may incorporate them into current and future projects.
While there are many stakeholders involved in a project’s implementation, the delivery of the project rests in the hands of the project management consultant. They’re responsible for ensuring that it is delivered on time and within the budget constraints.
Project Management Consultant Skills and Qualifications
Candidates with leadership skills and the ability to prioritize and multitask are sought by employers for this position. Preferred skills also include:
- Project management software proficiency – these consultants use project management software to schedule, plan, and document project data and progress
- Interpersonal skills – project management consultants work with stakeholders at varying levels and must build new client relationships while developing and maintaining current relationships
- Analytical skills – project management consultants must anticipate potential problems and risks that may occur with a prospective project before they occur
- Problem-solving skills – team conflicts, budgetary restraints, and other obstacles often hamper the completion or implementation of a new project, and it is the project management consultant’s job to resolve these issues
- Time and cost management – project management consultants must adhere to the agreed-upon time and budget restrictions established in the signed project contract
Tools of the Trade
- Project management software (MS Project, SharePoint, Project Server)
- Microsoft Office (Word and Excel)
Project Management Consultant Education and Training
A bachelor’s degree is the minimum educational prerequisite for employment as a project management consultant. This degree should be in project management, business administration, general management, or a related business field. Employees also prefer candidates with an MBA, PMP certification, and two to five years of business experience.
Project Management Consultant Salary and Outlook
Entry-level professionals make about $50,050 on average, while experienced consultants earn $140,015. The national median salary for this position is $81,942. Bonuses and profit sharing can add up to another $28,000 to a project management consultant’s salary.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 14 percent job growth by 2026, which is faster than average. This is based on a growing demand for consultants as more organizations look for ways to control their costs and improve efficiencies.
We’ve compiled a few resources for you to review if you are interested in pursuing a career as a project management consultant:
Project Management Step-by-Step Templates – Author Marvin Gamboa provides students, newbies to the project management field, and experienced professionals tools to help them achieve project success. This book offers templates, forms, flow charts, and sample projects that can be used by the reader to complete their own projects, saving them time and money.
Management Consulting: Delivering an Effective Project – Louise Wickham and Jeremy Wilcock’s fifth-edition book is an effective tool for project management professionals. Students will gain valuable information about the process of consulting, and those already working in the field will learn useful tips and techniques. This book includes best practices, case studies, and insight into how to overcome project challenges.
International Project Management Association – IPMA has 70 member associations spread throughout the globe. Members can network, share ideas, and collaborate. This association also offers four levels of certification: certified projects director, certified senior project manager, certified project manager, and certified project management associate.
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