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Topics: Career Development, Quality, Talent Management
What's the minimum number of years of experience a "senior" project manager should have?

Recently I've seen an increase in job postings for "senior" project managers with 3 years of experience (or more). While experience is a somewhat of a squishy topic and often industry related, on the whole, do you think 3 years is enough experience to rate a "senior" designation?
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Personally I'd rather tend to 5 years, but it really is depending on the sector. In some industries even 5 years experience would not guarantee that you could have seen through one project from start to end, while in others you may have more than 5 complete projects under your belt in 3 years which would probably qualify you as "senior". For other roles than PM mostly you can get promoted to "senior" in 3 years if you are good, so why not?

Hello Cris: Our company looks for a minimum of 5 years experience as a project manager (among other things).

I heard 5+ atleast to be senior level. 5-7 years sounds right to be called Senior level. Anything 3-5 they say mid level.

I agree with the 5 year assessment. It seems to take about 3 years to become a solid project manager. This allows several projects to be completed understanding that you've been learning along the way. Over the next two years, you start to identify risks more effectively. You know how to bring your project teams along with you through coaching, encouragement and nudging. Overall, you're making fewer mistakes, are established as a leader and you are more valuable to yours or another organization.
A component that is not mentioned here is the size and complexity of the projects managed. I feel bad asking a question in a response. But do you think a new project manager would learn more by managing three small to medium sized projects, or one or two larger ones? You would also have to consider the project manager's ability to scale to the larger projects.

I think it depend on the project type and the area .. here in middle east +10

Wherever I've worked, if it is a big company, you need to have at least 10 Year of Experience to be a Senior.

Hello Cris,

As Rami expressed, depends on the size of the company but also the type of industry in some you get more exposure than others.

A senior project manager should have at least 5 years of experience as a full-time project manager.

It varies based on scope of responsibility, industry, etc. However, agree, at least 5 is most common.

It depends on how well one has performed. Above 2 years experience any one qualify with required performance and attitude
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