To become a contract project manager, you usually need a bachelor's degree and 4-6 years of experience. The most common jobs before becoming a contract project manager are project manager, senior project manager, and information technology project manager. Hiring managers expect a contract project manager to have soft skills such as analytical skills, business skills, and customer-service skills. Once you have all the required skills and experience, it takes an average of 1-3 months of job training to become a contract project manager.

The national average salary for contract project managers is $81,263, but with the right certifications and experience, they can make up to $124,000. Getting a certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP) will help you to earn more as a contract project manager.

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 10% and produce 46,200 job opportunities across the U.S.

How to become a Contract Project Manager in 6 steps:

  • Step 1: Explore contract project manager education
  • Step 2: Develop contract project manager skills
  • Step 3: Complete relevent training/internship
  • Step 4: Get contract project manager certifications
  • Step 5: Research contract project manager duties
  • Step 6: Prepare your resume

Key Steps To Become a Contract Project Manager

  1. Explore Contract Project Manager Education

    If you're interested in becoming a contract project manager, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 66.2% of contract project managers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 13.5% of contract project managers have master's degrees. Even though most contract project managers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

    Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a contract project manager. When we researched the most common majors for a contract project manager, we found that they most commonly have business, computer science and electrical engineering.

    Contract Project Manager Degrees


    66.2 %


    13.5 %


    12.9 %

    Contract Project Manager MajorPercentages
    Computer Science6.40%
    Electrical Engineering5.10%
    Project Management5.10%
    Other Degrees53.80%

  2. Develop Contract Project Manager Skills

    It'll be a good idea to develop contract project manager skills before applying for a job. Here are some skills commonly requested in contract project manager job descriptions:

    Project Management21.25%
    Project Scope7.36%
    Contract Project5.46%

  3. Complete Relevent Training/Internship

    Contract project managers spend an average of 1-3 months on post-employment, on-the-job training. During this time, new contract project managers learn the skills and techniques required for their specific job and employer. The chart below shows how much time it takes to gain competency as a contract project manager based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data and data from real contract project manager resumes.

    Average Amount Of Time At Training

    Less than 1 month

    1-3 months

    3-6 months

    6-12 months

    1-2 years

    2-4 years

    4-10 years

    More than 10 years

  4. Get Contract Project Manager Certifications

    Certifications can show employers you have a baseline of knowledge expected for this position. They can also make you a more competitive candidate. Even if employers don't require a certification, having one may help you stand out in an application. Plus, the process of getting a certification can teach you new skills that you can bring to your work. We determined the most common certifications for contract project managers. The most common certification is Project Management Professional (PMP), but IT Information Library Foundations Certification (ITIL) is also frequently seen in contract project managers resumes.

    1. Project Management Professional (PMP)
    2. IT Information Library Foundations Certification (ITIL)
    3. Master Project Manager (MPM)
    4. Certified Construction Manager (CCM)
    5. Certified Professional Contracts Manager (CPCM)
    6. Managing Programs and Projects with Project Server 2013
    7. Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
    8. Certified Manager Certification (CM)

    More About Certifications

  5. Research Contract Project Manager Duties

    When you decide to become a contract project manager, It's important to know what duties and responsibilities are required for this position. Some common responsibilities are a part of most contract project manager jobs. Here is a list of the main duties that define the role:

    • Manage weekly CMS build outs from feature prioritization through implementation including test cases and training documentation.
    • Manage RFI's, field directives, construction changes, payments, and billing associate with project.
    • Manage the day to day duties of the turn-key/design build/plan and specification and retrofit-installation of the HVAC contracting department.
    • Manage, monitors and measures project portfolio status, recommending corrective action as necessary and communicate portfolio status to their management.
    • Install hundreds of replacement windows and doors.
    • Install windows, doors, and hardware for commercial and residential projects.

  6. Prepare Your Resume

    Finally, when you already have checked the skills and responsibilities for this role, you can start creating your resume. Everything that goes into creating a perfect resume can take hours, days, or even weeks. No worries, we created a resume builder to make this process as easy as possible with tips and examples of skills, responsibilities, and a summary.

    Choose From 10+ Customizable Contract Project Manager Resume templates

    Build a professional Contract Project Manager resume in minutes. Browse through our resume examples to identify the best way to word your resume. Then choose from 10+ resume templates to create your Contract Project Manager resume.

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    Contract Project Manager Resume

  7. Apply For a Contract Project Manager Job

    With your ready resume, it's time to start searching for a new job. Consider the tips below for a successful job search:

    1. Browse job boards for relevant postings
    2. Consult your professional network
    3. Reach out to companies you're interested in working for directly
    4. Watch out for job scams

    Contract Project Manager Jobs

  8. How To Become a Contract Project Manager
    How To Become a Contract Project Manager Career Overview

Average Salary for a Contract Project Manager

Contract Project Managers in America make an average salary of $81,263 per year or $39 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $124,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $53,000 per year.
Average Contract Project Manager Salary
$81,263 Yearly
$39.07 hourly

What Am I Worth?