A project manager’s role is integral to the success of a company. While they may be viewed as the “middle man” – receiving direction from leadership and delegating responsibilities to their team members – their strategic planning, logistics, and implementation are required for any projects to move forward and reach a positive outcome.
Often times, project managers go unnoticed when their portfolios are on time, under budget, and progressing as planned. When things go awry, however, project managers are front-and-center to take the heat. It’s important to understand the specific hurdles project managers are up against to better equip and support them to be successful in the workplace. Here are just six of their most common challenges:
1) Fickle expectations and the ever-expanding scope of work
Every project manager has taken on projects with clear tasks and goals in place – soon followed by endless changes to the original purview, inconsistent feedback, and a much larger undertaking than what was initially requested. Project managers require tools to view their portfolio status and resource availability to accommodate these ongoing changes and inflation of work.
2) Unreasonable deadlines
As the keeper of all scheduling and project timelines, project managers work hard to map out the most efficient plans to complete everything on time. But alas, new projects inevitably arise with desired completion dates of yesterday attached. While unfeasible, it is still their responsibility to deliver. The time crunch can create tension with overworked resources and leave project managers feeling unsupported by decision-makers.
3) Operating without a Plan B…or C, D, and E
Often inundated with new project requests or changes to work plans, it can be difficult to look beyond the current workload, let alone carve out time to create hypothetical scenarios to be better prepared for the future. Project managers need leadership’s support to provide them the time and forecasting tools to conduct these proactive exercises.
4) Communication breakdowns
When resources are spread across locations around the world, keeping teams apprised of the latest tasks or project revisions can be challenging. In order to battle breakdowns in communication amidst shift changes and varying time zones, project managers should have access to a cloud-based resource management platform to administer real-time data entry and communicate current status updates.
5) Lack of resources
While much is asked of a project manager, he or she is only as strong as the resources and skillsets available to them. Several projects may require a certain number or type of resource at the same time, forcing the project manager to prioritize projects based on their specific needs, deadlines, and how the end result will benefit the company.
6) Managing leadership expectations
With fluctuating deadlines and scopes of work, project managers are tasked with communicating their portfolio’s progress – even when the news may not be what leadership wants to hear. In these instances, project managers should utilize robust, easy-to-use reporting features to clearly display why some teams are running ahead of schedule, or how others have fallen off track and what steps will be taken to gain further ground.
How Tempus Resource Tackles Project Manager Challenges
It’s one thing to recognize the challenges project managers face. It’s another to address them head on by providing the support and investing in resources your staff deserve. Tempus Resource, the industry leader in resource management software, provides a full-service platform that houses all facets of your resource management operation. Its real-time, concurrent editing features give project managers the ability to maintain up-to-date data from anywhere to stay ahead of their portfolio’s trajectory. The unique What-if Analysis tool provides a safe space to manipulate an organization’s data and test possible outcomes to create multiple action and contingency plans for the future. In addition, advanced reporting features give project managers the appropriate tools to communicate their project needs and progress effectively.
Tempus Resource would love to learn more about your organization and ways its products can benefit your project management professionals. Contact us today to start the conversation.