If you are on the hunt for a job as a project manager in the rapidly growing field of information technology, then you may already be aware that there is some stiff competition out there. The good news is that you can get an edge in the IT job market if you understand what other employers are looking for in candidates. Having the right qualities and training can set you apart from other candidates, helping you to get the positive attention you deserve.
In a recent study, published by Mironov Consulting, it was revealed that many hiring managers in the IT field have a narrow focus when it comes to choosing a project manager. In a random sample of multiple IT job descriptions, both advanced and entry level, nearly all of the hiring managers wanted to see certain project management attributes presented by IT candidates.
- 76% asked for previous experience in a product management role, averaging 3 or more years.
- 93% asked for excellent verbal and written communication skills from candidates.
- 88% called out experience in their market segment as a very important factor for success.
- 83% named specific technologies, including 35% looking for Agile, and 20% hope to get PMs who also have UI/UX experience.
- 93% want a candidate with at least a BA/BS, 32% want MBAs, and 68% were looking for additional certifications
It’s clear that hiring managers are generally recruiting IT candidates who have some experience or a background in certain industries, because projects can vary widely. However, by understanding more of what they expect and look for in candidates, an IT job seeker can better hone his or her skills to attract the best hiring companies.
Another avenue to landing work as an IT project manager is to accept a temporary or contract assignment in a related area. Then become a subject matter expert and ask for opportunities to manage a project, working under the guidance of a more seasoned PM. Being a professional project manager takes a broad range of skills and experience, but the most critical path to success is by being proactive and taking command of your own career.
Learn more about career opportunities in the IT field and project management: