How to Find and Hire the Perfect Project Manager


Finding the right project manager is a critical step when you want a project to be a success, but that doesn’t mean it is easy to accomplish. If you don’t have the proper hiring processes and techniques in place, you might end up with less than ideal candidates, or in the worst-case scenario, hiring the wrong person.

If you’re looking to find and hire the perfect project manager for your business, here are some tips to get you started.

Determine the Real Requirements

When hiring a project manager, you want a person who has a solid understanding of the concepts at work in the project. However, that doesn’t mean they have to be a subject matter expert to succeed.

For example, if a project revolves around wireless networking, it’s wise to select a candidate who can understand the difference  between a router and an extender, but that doesn’t mean they need the same knowledge base as a certified networking professional.

If you make the subject area requirements too comprehensive, you may miss out on great project managers who could easily complete the project by working with other employees in your company who already possess the knowledge needed to fill in the gaps.

Avoid Generic Job Ads

Some companies try to speed up the recruitment process by using vacancy announcements that are one-size-fits-all. Often, these include platitudes like must be “a great communicator” or “team-oriented,” but fail to dig into the idiosyncrasies of the project itself.

If you want to get a higher-quality response, you need to include details of the actual project. By being specific, you’re more likely to attract candidates with the right combination of skills and experience as well as a genuine interest in the position itself.

Specify Your Methodologies

Along with providing details about the project, it is vital to include information about the specific methodology that will be used.

There are a lot of options floating around out there, so you can’t assume that a project manager candidate has knowledge of all of them. If you need someone familiar with PMBOK, Six Sigma, or Agile, it is best to put that in the job announcement as a requirement. That way there is no confusion about whether the person truly has the right credentials to get the job done based on your current work environment.

Skip the Essay Questions

At times, companies hope to narrow down top talent by having them answer long essay questions about the experience or preferred project management approach. Asking someone to explain their expertise in writing isn’t going to get you the best candidates. In fact, it may scare some high-quality applicants away.

An application process that is seen as burdensome doesn’t make the best first impression, and many skilled professionals will choose to walk away before they finish applying. So, avoid open-ended questions that can’t be answered quickly, and you’ll be more likely to get a larger selection of applicants.

If you’re looking for the perfect project manager, the recruitment professionals at MindFinders can connect you with top talent in the area. Contact us to see how our process can help you find the right candidate quickly and efficiently.

Written by Tim Booker, President and CEO of MindFinders, with over 20 years of industry experience.


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