Project managers oversee the planning and delivery of construction projects. They ensure that work is completed on time and within budget.
They organise logistics, delegate work and keep track of spending. As a project manager, you’d liaise with clients and construction professionals to arrange schedules and direct activities.
How to become a project manager
There are several routes to becoming a project manager. You can gain the qualifications you need by doing a university or college course, or an apprenticeship.
If you already have some experience you may be able to apply for a job directly. You should explore these options to find out which is the right one for you.
You may need a (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.
You could do an undergraduate degree in construction management, project management, business or IT.
If you already have a first degree you could study for a postgraduate qualification in construction project management.
You’ll need :
College / training provider
You could do NVQ Levels 4 and 5 in Project Management or Levels 3, 4 and 5 in Business Improvement Techniques.
Some training providers also offer NVQ levels 3, 4 and 5 specific to construction project management.
You’ll generally need :
An apprenticeship with a construction firm is a good way into the industry.
Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week.
Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.
An intermediate apprenticeship takes around two years to complete. You could follow a higher apprenticeship in construction management.
You’ll need :
Many project managers start their careers as craftspeople in a particular trade. If you have experience of managing small projects, you could study part-time to gain project management qualifications and get a job in a construction project support team.
Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a project manager.
Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.
Additional skills which may benefit anyone looking to become a project manager include :
What does a project manager do?
As a project manager you will be responsible for helping to keep projects on a realistic timescale and budget. This involves selecting and leading a project team and ensuring you are aware of all details so you can keep a client up to date.
The job role of a project manager involves the following duties :
How much could you earn as a project manager?
The expected salary for a project manager varies as you become more experienced.
Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.