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Working as a Project Manager

Project managers are essential to, well, projects. They take on roles that plan and oversee each project to ensure the work is completed on time and within a certain budget. That said, the job is so much more than just that.

A project manager is also responsible for finding project resources, making sure the budget has been prepared and keeping stakeholders up-to-date throughout the entire project. Project managers definitely have a hand in a little bit of everything when it comes to a project.

In a normal week, project managers can expect to work regular full-time hours, but when it comes down to the project deadline, they typically work longer hours during the week and may even pick up a few weekend shifts.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a project manager. For example, did you know that they make an average of $42.19 an hour? That's $87,762 a year!

What Does a Project Manager Do

There are certain skills that many project managers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, business skills and speaking skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a project manager, we found that a lot of resumes listed 37.3% of project managers included project management, while 6.3% of resumes included procedures, and 4.1% of resumes included customer service. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the project manager job title. But what industry to start with? Most project managers actually find jobs in the technology and professional industries.

How To Become a Project Manager

If you're interested in becoming a project manager, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 49.3% of project managers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 25.5% of project managers have master's degrees. Even though most 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 project manager. When we researched the most common majors for a project manager, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on project manager resumes include associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a project manager. In fact, many project manager jobs require experience in a role such as senior project manager. Meanwhile, many project managers also have previous career experience in roles such as project engineer or manager.

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Average Salary$87,762

Project Manager Jobs

Project Manager Career Paths

Top Careers Before Project Manager

Top Careers After Project Manager

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Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Project Manager

Project Managers in America make an average salary of $87,762 per year or $42 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $116,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $66,000 per year.
Average Salary
$87,762

Best Paying Cities

Average Salary
Salary Range82k - 152k$112k$112,123
Salary Range79k - 138k$105k$105,094
Salary Range80k - 131k$103k$102,616
Salary Range80k - 131k$103k$102,584
Salary Range78k - 127k$100k$100,062
Salary Range78k - 125k$100k$99,575
$59k
$152k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Project Manager Guam Biosecurity, Guam
Project Manager Guam Biosecurity, Guam
Colorado State University
Colorado State University
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$82,00010/30/2020
$82,000
The City of Houston
Project Manager
Project Manager
The City of Houston
The City of Houston
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$71,15010/30/2020
$71,150
Project Manager
Project Manager
G4S
G4S
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$41,74010/30/2020
$41,740
Precast Project Manager
Precast Project Manager
R.W. Sidley, Inc.
R.W. Sidley, Inc.
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$45,00010/30/2020
$45,000
Project Manager
Public Buildings Service
Public Buildings Service
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$76,72110/30/2020
$76,721
See More Recent Salaries

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Project Manager Demographics

Gender

male

66.3%

female

29.6%

unknown

4.0%

Ethnicity

White

70.3%

Hispanic or Latino

12.4%

Black or African American

8.1%

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

43.1%

French

11.6%

Chinese

5.9%
See More Demographics

Project Manager Education

Majors

Degrees

Bachelors

49.3%

Masters

25.5%

Associate

9.0%

Top Colleges for Project Managers

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

Tuition and fees
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA

Tuition and fees
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL

Tuition and fees
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

4. Boston University

Boston, MA

Tuition and fees
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

5. Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA

Tuition and fees
$18,454
Enrollment
40,108

6. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA

Tuition and fees
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

7. University of Washington

Seattle, WA

Tuition and fees
$11,207
Enrollment
30,905

8. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX

Tuition and fees
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

9. New York University

New York, NY

Tuition and fees
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

10. University of Maryland - College Park

College Park, MD

Tuition and fees
$10,595
Enrollment
30,184
See More Education Info

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming A Project Manager

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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Project Manager

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 37.3% of project managers listed project management on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and business skills are important as well.

  • Project Management, 37.3%
  • Procedures, 6.3%
  • Customer Service, 4.1%
  • Infrastructure, 3.3%
  • Construction Management, 2.6%
  • Other Skills, 46.4%
  • See All Project Manager Skills

Best States For a Project Manager

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a project manager. The best states for people in this position are Colorado, Washington, California, and New Jersey. Project managers make the most in Colorado with an average salary of $106,395. Whereas in Washington and California, they would average $104,792 and $103,879, respectively. While project managers would only make an average of $102,330 in New Jersey, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Washington

Total Project Manager Jobs:
2,529
Highest 10% Earn:
$172,000
Location Quotient:
1.7
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Colorado

Total Project Manager Jobs:
1,316
Highest 10% Earn:
$176,000
Location Quotient:
1.11
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Rhode Island

Total Project Manager Jobs:
185
Highest 10% Earn:
$158,000
Location Quotient:
1.03
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Project Manager Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a project manager. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

At Zippia, we went through countless project manager resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Write a Project Manager Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless project manager resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

How Do Project Manager Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

Annual ReviewDecember 2019

5.0

Zippia Official LogoAnnual ReviewDecember 2019

What do you like the most about working as Project Manager?

Communication and team spirit is very motivating and interesting Show More

What do you NOT like?

Above 50% Travel can be distracting and I’ll prefer to travel less Show More

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

Richard the LionheartedJune 2019

5.0

Zippia Official LogoRichard the LionheartedJune 2019

What do you like the most about working as Project Manager?

Making the project strategy come alive and really work. The sense of fulfillment in the team Is worth the heavy lift. Show More

What do you NOT like?

Not fulfilling a requirement but then nailing it and not having more than a few of these has learning value. Show More

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Top Project Manager Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ project managers and discovered their number of project manager opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Infosys Public Services, Inc. was the best, especially with an average salary of $79,247. Wipro follows up with an average salary of $75,841, and then comes HCL America Inc. with an average of $76,703. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a project manager. The employers include Alstom, Kforce, and System One Holdings

1. Infosys Public Services
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$79,247
Project Managers Hired: 
12,256+
2. Wipro
3.6
Avg. Salary: 
$75,841
Project Managers Hired: 
6,869+
3. HCL America
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$76,703
Project Managers Hired: 
4,298+
4. IBM
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$84,673
Project Managers Hired: 
3,885+
5. Atos
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$75,658
Project Managers Hired: 
3,489+
6. Capgemini
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$85,936
Project Managers Hired: 
2,429+

Project Manager Videos

Recently Added Project Manager Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020