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Struggling to get Junior Project Manager role

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by HamStar50, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. HamStar50

    HamStar50 Bit Poster

    Hi folks,

    I come from a infrastructure (helpdesk, network support and then network engineer) background where i was then offered a role to project co-ordinate WAN rollouts (over private ADSL) for business with 30-800 locations. It involved stakeholder management and modifying the project plans (once initially created by the project manager). I've since left this role and completed Prince2 foundation. Working on Practitioner now.

    This is I want to get working now. I believe my CV is good and i'm great on the phone and in interviews but as of yet I rarely see a junior pm role outside of london (in midlands - will to travel up south as about hertfordshire or manchester etc) and i''m not really getting calls back for the couple of jobs locally (nottingham/birmingham) that I have applied for.

    Anyone have any hints/tips/advise to do with any part of my job hunting...thank you.
    Certifications: BSc (Hons) Networking & Communications, MBCS (British Computer Society), CompTIA A+, MCP in Win XP, MCP in Server 2003, Citrix CCA: Presentation Server 4, Cisco CCNA, CompTIA Linux+, PRINCE2 Foundation
    WIP: PRINCE2 Practitioner
  2. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

    Maybe employers don't agree with you. :biggrin

    I'm not sure what a junior PM is...
    A project would have to be pretty massive to warrant a 'deputy PM' and that isn't even a concept that something like Prince2 embraces. If the PM needed support it would be via the project office.

    As a good PM is pretty much the most crucial element of any project you aren't going to see many places looking for junior or newly qualified ones.
    I suspect that the only way you'd land a job like that is if you first became an expert in a certain industry sector or pretty handy with a certain technology. Only then might they be prepared to overlook your lack of experience in managing projects.

    I don't actually know the answer to this one. I think that possibly you need to be working somewhere where there are projects going on and getting involved it them so that you can start building up your CV with project experience. How you find these elusive jobs and projects, I'm not sure.

    Just a thought, and others will know more about this than me, are there agencies or contractors who specialise in providing staff for short/medium term projects?
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  3. SimonD
    Honorary Member

    SimonD Terabyte Poster

    I think the lack of the practitioner qualification is going to go against you, I would also have a look at Agile as well as PRINCE as Agile is definitely becoming more widely recognised.

    The next thing you need to understand is whether you want to become a technical PM or a generic PM, having a background in technology gives you a better chance of becoming a technical PM because it means you have a better grasp of what's going on technically however being a PM doesn't mean you can't manage technical projects, far from it, it just means you have to rely more on your techy guys instead.

    There are junior PM roles out there but like Jonny says, most places will want people who don't need hand holding, who can run and jump with the project instead of potentially asking all sorts of questions that the PM should know.

    In my place my PM's range from technical to non technical, usually the technical PM can be left alone to get the project delivered just fine, occasionally I may get my non techy PM coming up and asking for advice but all of them are more than capable of delivering the projects without having to ask other PM's what to do next.

    Unfortunately you may still have to take a techy role on where you're the technical engineer to get you more experience from a PM perspective, get some more experience of what it's like inside a project team, shadow the PM and see what kind of paper work he has to deal with (scoping documents, statements of work, budgets etc), just having done a PRINCE 2 foundation and done a project co-ordinator role doesn't actually make you a decent PM and that's probably what's causing the glut in potential work.
    Certifications: CNA | CNE | CCNA | MCP | MCP+I | MCSE NT4 | MCSA 2003 | Security+ | MCSA:S 2003 | MCSE:S 2003 | MCTS:SCCM 2007 | MCTS:Win 7 | MCITP:EDA7 | MCITP:SA | MCITP:EA | MCTS:Hyper-V | VCP 4 | ITIL v3 Foundation | VCP 5 DCV | VCP 5 Cloud | VCP6 NV | VCP6 DCV | VCAP 5.5 DCA
    WIP: VCP6-CMA, VCAP-DCD and Linux + (and possibly VCIX-NV).
  4. HamStar50

    HamStar50 Bit Poster


    Thank you both for your insights as both of them are clearly very logical. I only started to look for Junior PM roles as I realised they exist when I came across them by accident. You're both right that in theory a Junior PM doesn't make sense so i'm not entirely sure what employers are looking for when they have these vacancies. Whatever it is, i've clearly not got it as I don't seem to get a look in on the job.

    As most PM roles require some sort of budgetary control, how would one get this tie of experience. Would I be right in saying that really the role I need to be looking for is one of an IT Manager?
    Certifications: BSc (Hons) Networking & Communications, MBCS (British Computer Society), CompTIA A+, MCP in Win XP, MCP in Server 2003, Citrix CCA: Presentation Server 4, Cisco CCNA, CompTIA Linux+, PRINCE2 Foundation
    WIP: PRINCE2 Practitioner
  5. Technojobs

    Technojobs New Member

    The number of Junior Project Manager jobs has yoyo'd since the begining of 2011, however the salary expectations now seem to be on the rise (average salary at the moment is around £35,000 - 16% increase on the same time last year). This is a good indication that the number of jobs available is rising but those with the skills to fill these roles aren't being found.

    On our site, we have seen the number of junior project manager jobs rise significantly since we began to pull out of the recession in 2010. There are now over 100 JPM jobs on our niche site projectmanagerjobs.co.uk

    Almost every Junior Project Manager job will require you to have at least Prince2 foundation and it is an excellent idea to have practitioner before you apply as this will give your CV a boost - so it's great that you have this underway. I also agree with SimonD -there is massive demand (which seems to keep on growing) for professionals with Agile.
  6. sendalot

    sendalot Nibble Poster

    I have a CAPM(not enough hours for PMP) and would like to get PRINCE2.

    I've been wandering around the webs to find exam information.

    So, where can I sign-up for a test and also study beforehand?

    WIP: A+

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