Project Management

The PM Talent Gap

From the ProjectsAtWork Blog
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Breaking barriers and building bridges to better manage projects and lead teams.

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Let’s cut to the chase: you’ve made a good career choice.

The demand for project management practitioners is growing dramatically as organizations worldwide seek people who can implement strategic initiatives, drive change and deliver innovation. By 2027, employers will need more than 87 million individuals in project management-oriented roles, according to the recently released report Project Management Job Growth and Talent Gap 2017-2027, conducted for PMI by the Anderson Economic Group.

Among the catalysts for this global demand are attrition rates, including seasoned project management professionals retiring from the workforce, and a significant increase in demand for project talent in rapidly developing economies such as China and India.

And Uncle Sam wants you too: the report forecasts that the number of project management jobs in the United States alone will grow about 30 percent in the next 10 years, adding on average more than 210,000 new positions each year in project-oriented industries. (The largest percentage increase is expected in the health care sector at 17 percent.)

That’s an extraordinarily positive career outlook for skilled project professionals, particularly as we are inundated with other reports about how artificial intelligence and machine learning will shake up many industries over the same time span. Of course, AI initiatives also require project talent! And while some project management functions aren’t immune, the collaborative interactions and creative decision-making that define successful project teams won’t ever be easily automated.

Yes, the project management future’s bright — but not enough to wear shades and overlook the “talent” part of this report. Organizations, now and in the future, need practitioners with a mix of competencies that combine technical and leadership skills with strategic and business acumen.

What are you doing to improve your job outlook? Certification is a fundamental start, of course, and it’s a smart investment — salaries of practitioners with the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification are 20 percent higher on average than those without a PMP, according to the ninth and most recent edition of PMI’s biennial salary report.

But your development and learning shouldn’t stop after certification. More than ever, the pace of technological change requires project management professionals to continuously improve and expand their skill sets. That includes becoming conversant in emerging business trends, exploring agile approaches, finding mentors and joining peer networks who can support your journey.

The project management field is booming, and it’s creating a talent gap that will be growing even wider over the next ten years. That makes you valuable right now. Take steps to ensure it makes you even more valuable in the future.

Posted on: July 18, 2017 10:52 PM | Permalink

Comments (57)

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What I've learned through diversifying my skills is that I see things from a totally different lens than most of my peers. (that I currently work with) From experience a lot of great PM's address the "how" when charged with a project. My experiences and background will not let me start the "how" until I fully understand the "why". Knowing the "why" makes the "how" so much clearer and generally saves money and time. Thanks for sharing the article.

After reading this article, Now i am feeling proud to be a part of Project management field.
Thanks Aaron for sharing your precious thoughts with us.

Well written post. Thanks You

interesting knowledge

Wow, This was a great blog with very interesting facts. I can't wait to see what the future holds for us Project Management Professionals.

Thanks Aaron!

Thank you for sharing. True - continuous learning will keep us one step ahead of others in today's ever changing world.

Thank you for pointing out the PMI report. It bogles the mind when you look at the emerging countries' needs!

Good advice about keeping our value. We have to remember: it's not enough to be as good as the average. If we want to be picked for the best projects, we need to be leaders, even outliers.

Nice article. Some good advice

Thanks Aaron: My motto is learn something new every day! Improving our skills continuously is necessary for success.


Thanks Aaron, it is an interesting topic

Thanks for sharing!

It's definitely growing, my fear is that more eyes from groups like the government will have more impact on the does and don'ts (best practices) long-term. Hopefully PMI will remain independent of the influences of government intervention as this grows.

Interesting article.
Thanks for sharing.

Thanks for the article. I wasn't aware of the Job Growth and Talent Gap report.

Informative article, Aaron. Thanks for sharing.

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