While soft skills are essential for any project manager, there are several important technical skills that will improve your project management ability. In particular, you should be familiar with agile project management and how to implement it in your operations.
Agile project management includes many strategies to make your workflow as flexible as possible. These methods divide the project into separate tasks that can be carried out by different team members.
For job applications, your cover letter is a great place to put additional information and experience that doesn’t match your resume.
Below are seven difficult critical skills to develop so that you can impress in an interview or on the project manager’s cover letter.
1. Cost Management
Each project has a specific budget that you are responsible for managing. This requires careful analysis of expected costs and regular check-in to ensure you’re on the right track to stay on budget.
As a project manager, you also need to recognize when the scope is unrealistic within a given budget. In this case, you need to analyze the needs of the project to determine how to save on costs – which can mean finding a new supplier with lower rates or cutting out an unimportant part of the process.
Being agile in making decisions is key to functioning as an effective project manager.
2. Data Analysis
Data analysis to increase productivity and streamline your team’s work is one of the best skills for project managers. This may include database management, resource management, financial analysis and any other data application with which you have experience.
Kanban is a popular agile project management method because it streamlines the process by tracking task status. If you are unfamiliar with Kanban Board, take some time to understand the concept if you want to add it to your list of good project management skills.
Kanban divides the project tasks into three main categories. There are many ways to name these categories, but they generally classify tasks as “to do”, “to do”, and “done.”
4. Computer Skills
Knowing how to navigate the computer is a key project management skill, because you need to communicate and collaborate effectively via email, messenger applications and more.
Basic knowledge of e-mail and the Internet is expected, but you should be familiar with other computer skills too.
In particular, collaborative programs such as Dropbox, Asana and Slack are key to effective project management. You may also need to demonstrate knowledge of programs such as WordPress and Adobe Creative Suite to assess your team’s progress.
5. Performance Tracking
Efficiency is the key to effective project management. Monitoring performance can reveal workflow gaps that prevent optimal productivity.
You need to work closely with your team to evaluate their work in terms of both quality and quantity. The work should meet your quality standards, but also must comply with the schedule you set.
Recording supervision history and job evaluation of others can be helpful to show the hiring manager when applying for a new job.
6. Scrum Management
After Kanban, Scrum management is the most common method of agile project management. Project managers usually play the role of scrum master, who is responsible for removing obstacles in the way of the team. This allows for the highest productivity and greater success rate.
As a process, Scrum management shortens a large project to smaller “sprints”, which allows your team to focus on their tasks. Instead of looking to the future for one big date, the project is divided into managed parts that provide clients with regular results.
7. Project Lifecycle Software
The project life cycle usually consists of four separate stages: initiation, planning, implementation and resolution. Each company has its own deadlines for these stages, and some divide them even further, so you need to be familiar with the cycle used in your organization.
Understanding the life cycle is crucial to creating a flow within the project. Many applications can digitize the life cycle of a project, so hiring managers will be looking to see if you are familiar with any of these programs. If so, be sure to include them on your project management skills list and identify the platforms that you are most familiar with.