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The Role of a project manager

Contrary to popular belief you do not need advanced technical knowledge at the level of a developer to work as a project manager. However, you will need efficient management skills, be meticulous and exceptionally well-organized. What does a project manager do and why is this person necessary (in our opinion) for the successful implementation of an IT project?

What is the project manager responsible for?

One can say: "for everything that is related to the implementation of the project", from the planning stage, implementation, supervision and finally to the delivery of the finished service or product to the client. Usually, it is the project manager who is responsible for contacting the client and for communicating their comments to the team.

The scope of responsibilities and duties performed by the project manager can be divided into several areas of their activity and involvement in the project. First of all, it is a diagnosis of activities required to implement the expected functionalities, assigning tasks and working within the project budget. Another area is communication with the client, including reporting, negotiating expectations and determining functionality. In addition, testing new functionalities, description of possible errors, suggestions for changes.

In short, the project manager's responsibilities towards the project can be defined as follows:

  • project launch
  • assigning tasks
  • reporting progress
  • team work coordination
  • building a team to implement the project
  • budget monitoring
  • development of the project implementation schedule
IT Team in fornt of a computer

Project manager and the client

Good communication with the client and maintaining relations in connection with the project being implemented is a basic role of the project manager. Above all, it is important to reliably inform the client about the progress made, the schedule and finally - the results of the team's work. The ordering party also has the right to submit their comments and expect from the project manager that these comments will be taken into consideration. Companies that approach the implementation of the project professionally also advise the client, based on their previous experience.

What are the duties of project manager regarding the client?
  • ongoing reporting of progress
  • taking into account the customer's comments regarding the project
  • advising the client on available and useful options
  • delivery of the project in accordance with the established schedule

Project manager and the team

The essence of a project manager's work can be compared to running a sports team. This is a person who not only unites the entire team, but also its members individually in such a way as to achieve the desired effect. Team members are not only developers, but also graphic designers, UX designers and people responsible for content. The project manager is a person whose task is to motivate the team in such a way that it is possible to deliver the project according to the schedule.

What are the duties of project manager regarding the team?

  • building the project team
  • team motivation
  • communicating customer comments
  • prioritizing tasks
  • drawing up the project schedule
Project's schedule on a blackboard

Project manager vs. product owner

As the name suggests - the project manager is mainly responsible for the project and its delivery. The product owner, on the other hand, is responsible for the entire product - not only its production, but also marketing, sales, contact with clients and communication strategy. Within the life cycle of one product, several projects can be implemented, from the aforementioned production to further updates and improvements. Therefore, it is very important that both the project manager and the product owner communicate well with each other, as the relationships of both of these people have a significant impact on the overall work. In short, both roles can be defined as follows: the product owner knows what should be done and the project manager knows how.

What are the skills of good project managers?

  • developed leadership qualities
  • ability to work in a team
  • ability to deal with conflicts
  • negotiation skills
  • meticulousness
  • involvement
  • building constructive criticism and also accepting it
  • patience
  • ability to work under time pressure

Summary

As you can see - the work of a project manager is not easy. On the other hand, however, the completed project and customer satisfaction should compensate for all difficulties that arise during project implementation. Importantly, you do not need to have technical knowledge from the IT industry to act as a PM. Of course, it will be a great help in working with developers, but it is worth remembering that everything can be learned. The project manager role is the foundation of a well-functioning company, therefore, in our opinion, his/her presence in the project implementation process is essential.

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