Skills Every Project Manager CV Should Include
(Updated April 24, 2020)
Your accomplishments as a professional project manager will not be obvious to a hiring manager unless you can make an organized and convincing document of it on paper—your resume. It is one thing to have the necessary skills to flawlessly execute all projects, but another thing to inform others about it in your project management resume.
The skills you exhibit in your day-to-day role should ideally be showcased in your resume as well. How can you go about doing that?
A caveat before we begin: it’s important to incorporate the skills mentioned below only if you can confidently say you have them. Make sure you’re only adding skills that you gained in your professional experience. There should be a link between the skills you mention and how it is relevant in your work. Otherwise, you run the risk of misleading the recruiter.
Additionally, you need to go through the job description of your target profile and filter the important skills and keywords to make sure you include them in your resume. This is helpful to get the attention of recruiters and get past the screening tools of applicant tracking systems (ATS).
Here are some key project management skills, both hard and soft skills, that should be in your project management resume:
Project management and delivery
This all-encompassing term includes the entire project lifecycle from gathering requirements and formulating project strategies to spearheading teams, monitoring projects, and performing audits, among other skills.
An extension of this skill would be Agile and/or Scrum, which is a standard project management methodology in demand by most organizations.
Client relationship management
A key component of project management is the skill to foster long-lasting business relationship with clients. A competent project manager understands client requirements and deliver client-centric solutions.
A project manager coordinates regularly with multiple internal and external stakeholders. They include cross-functional internal teams, vendors, suppliers, project sponsors, users, and regulators. The skill to manage varied stakeholders with diverse interests should be present in a project manager.
IT or technical project managers should include a separate technical skills section. In that section, group your technical expertise under relevant subheadings like Languages, Tools, or Platforms, to ensure that recruiters can easily scan your project management resume for specific skills and experience.
Project managers formulate brainstorming strategies to accomplish short-term benchmarks and long-term project goals. They should have an understanding of the company’s organizational framework, business environment, industry trends, and competitors to successfully formulate these strategies.
Automation and process improvement
Project managers are expected to automate repetitive tasks and optimize processes. If you’re including this as a skill, it’s important to concisely show your work experience and the impact of applying automation and process improvement in quantifiable terms such as cost reduction or time saved.
Project managers know how to manage teams. Hiring managers assess team leadership and motivation to gauge how candidates will flourish as project managers. Team management skills include related skills like team incubation, team building, motivation, and coaching that you can accordingly include in your project management resume as well.
Mentoring, training, and development
As a subset of team management, training and mentoring enable people working under the project manager to grow as professionals. It results in both the immediate fulfillment of specific project goals as well as long-term consistent success of endeavors across the organization.
Risk mitigation and management
In ever-changing business scenarios, project managers should know how they can mitigate and manage business risks, so project goals are minimally affected. When project managers skillfully mitigate risks, they isolate projects from the negative impact of a dynamic external environment.
Budgeting and cost control
Skilled project managers stand out from the rest when they can design and implement cost control initiatives and manage extensive budgets. Cost control is often the result of conceptualizing and implementing innovative process improvement measures that help secure favorable project outcomes and returns.
Negotiation and conflict resolution
Project managers interface with diverse stakeholders, so they must have negotiation and conflict resolution skills. When you can resolve conflicts arising within the team and with external stakeholders, your projects are more likely to be sustainable and successful.
Audits, quality assurance, and compliance
A project manager conducts audits and ensures compliance with various internal norms and regulatory guidelines. This requires a deep-level understanding of the regulatory framework, a keen eye to identify deviations, and the initiative to start immediate corrective action.
Which to emphasize?
Hard skills can be easily demonstrated by project managers. Soft skills, like critical thinking, problem solving, conflict resolution, communication skills, or stress management are more challenging to show. Present these skillsin the context of situations where an outcome can be quantified.
It is also important to remember that people accomplish projects, not machines or software, so it’s essential that a project manager shows people skills and soft skills. An ideal professional project manager possesses a healthy balance of hard and soft skills. As a rule, align your resume with the job listing, so you can emphasize the right combination of crucial skills in your project management resume.
What other project manager resume skills do you think should be added in this list? Drop a comment below!