So You Want to Be a Project Manager?

Facilitator: Faye Snowden 

Panel: Sam Griffin, Mira Roseman, Gert Reynaert, Yoshita Mukherjee, and Wayne Kuang

Session DescriptionThe Project Management (PM) job market is on fire. Both corporate entities and higher education institutions compete daily to fill PM positions from a shrinking candidate pool. In February 2022, organizations from Zoom to the U.S. Department of Labor were advertising for project managers on LinkedIn. A search on Workday returned 318 PM related opportunities, and a PM Educause listserv sends information about job openings on almost a daily basis. Berkeley IT’s Technology Program Office (TPO) has hired 3 project managers in the past year alone.

In the PM Job Growth and Talent Gap Report (2017 – 2027), The Project Management Institute (PMI) explains why there are more PM openings than candidates, a state that will last for the next several years. Project Managers currently in the field are retiring at a high rate, and organizations who hadn't before relied on project management are starting to realize the value. PMI predicts that the United States will create 213,000 new PM positions every year until 2027. The resulting, significant talent gap provides an excellent opportunity to upskill or reskill in preparation for entering the field.

While much information exists on project management best practices, theories and concepts, we don’t usually hear about the circuitous route most working project managers take toward their careers, and what day-to-day work-life is like. Also lacking is information on how to pursue a PM career in a more intentional and practical way.

In this session, project managers from Berkeley IT’s TPO will discuss their journeys to becoming project managers. They will share challenges as well as successes from their daily work lives, and provide advice on how to enter the field via a more intentional route. Participants will have time to ask questions followed by a short presentation with practical preparation tips, and the application process for PMI PM credentials.