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The cost of hiring the wrong Project Manager

The cost of hiring the wrong Project Manager

Perhaps worse than hiring the wrong Project Manager is not to hire one at all. Countless businesses instead rely on the good-nature of their highly organised and willing employees to assume the responsibility for managing one or several projects. Not only does this detract them from the job they were employed to do but it also puts them under a lot of pressure which they may not be ready for.

Hiring a qualified project manager with experience of delivering projects like yours is a much safer option. Unpicking unforeseen issues and taking them back to a root cause is often painful and can normally be avoided if projects are planned properly with risks and issues pre-identified.

But recruiting the right project manager is key.

A recent survey conducted by the PM Summit and Pan Research amongst over 400 project management professionals in Ireland showed that 19% of recent projects had failed, costing companies €580,000 on average. In the wider market, 19% could be viewed as a very conservative estimate, with figures up to 70% of projects failing regularly cited. This demonstrates the importance of having the right practices in place to deliver projects successfully. 

Of course, it’s not just money at stake when a project fails, it’s your company’s reputation internally and externally, its competitive stance and the risk of losing staff who have become demotivated, stressed or have ‘lost face’ as a result.

Research cited in the Pulse of the Profession®: Success Rates Rise: Transforming the High Cost of Low Performance further highlights the cost savings involved in successful project delivery: organisations that invest in proven project management practices waste 28 times less money because more of their projects are completed successfully.

How to hire the best IT project manager

Fortunately, the talent pool of project managers is not insufficient. However, that’s not to say project professionals are not in high demand and you’ll face your fair share of competition to hire the best candidate. So what attributes should you look for? 

  • Certifications in project methodologies like PRINCE2, PMP, Agile or Scrum
  • Soft skills like flexibility and strong communication are essential
  • Experience in leading projects with evidence of times when they have motivated a team to bring about delivery success
  • Technical knowledge of relevant IT platforms/systems
  • Business acumen/understanding of business strategy 

Why now is the time to make that hire

Job openings in project management are expected to boom over the next ten years. According to Project Management Job Growth and Talent Gap, the UK is expected to see 186,196 new job openings between now and 2027. 10 other countries including the U.S., Canada and China are also anticipating a rise in project manager jobs; with an expected 33% increase in the project management labour force over the next decade (also cited in job growth and talent gap report).

With project professionals in even higher demand, a talent gap is possible which could make recruitment more difficult in the future so now is the time to invest in the project management talent you need. 

On the plus side, if you’re a qualified IT project manager, you can rest assured there’ll continue to be great job opportunities for you for years to come.

View our latest project management jobs.