Getting an it project manager job.

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How did you get your start doing it project manager work, and what career moves did you make to get to your current position?

Do you need a particular educational background?

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Deven Verma in Oakland, California

91 months ago

I started working as an IT Project Manager because of my role as a lead developer, and then taking on the role of the Portfolio Project Manager for one of the 3 auto companies. That role proplled me in the Program/ Project Management arena, and since then, have been working primarily as an IT Project Manager for different companies.

I have attended many online courses/ seminars that deal with Program/ Project management, and then went for my PMI certification.

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Alexandra in Astoria, New York

80 months ago

I worked as a system administrator/technical lead for fifteen years and have a Masters in Telecomm. and Info Mgmt. and many techical system engineer certs. I took a half-semester course in Project Mgmt. As successful IT PM you need to be part geek, part social butterfly, and in NYC be able to understand all the world's people and translate that into solid, actionable plans, and when the project gets going make sure all the separate silos communicate with each other, a.k.a. part diplomat but someone who actually delivers a stable product that meets requirements.

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Ed in Lombard, Illinois

68 months ago

Susan in Atlanta, Georgia said: Interesting case...I only have a bachelor's in English/Education and have worked four years as an English teacher. I hate my job, am sick of liberal arts, and want to break into the IT/business world. Should I pursue an MBA with an IS emphasis? Get a masters in MIS? Just get a PM certificate?

Susan, having a teaching degree you might want to explore corporate training opportunities. The PMP certification does not limit you to an IT job, the processes and methodology are industry neutral. If you want to break into the IT world, I would suggest a degree in IS with additional classes in Project Management.

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Diligent Professional in Houston, Texas

68 months ago

Why did you choose liberal arts in the first place (what was the interesting part)
In general you should stay with your strengths.
Do you have hidden strengths in IT? (be it programming, understanding technical details and connecting the dots, etc.)
What is your vision?
Keep in Mind
Project Management is not just a certificate...in fact the PMP requires that you have documented experience AND pass the test.
There are levels you need to consider...see pmi.org

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Jim in Williamstown, New Jersey

65 months ago

I have been a PM for about 30 years after about 10 years as a programmer/analyst. I have an Associates Degree in Computer Science and 3 years ago I got my PMP certification along with MS Project/Project Server certification.

I got into PM through the IT field and discovered too late that Project Management by definition is a temporary postion. A project has a start and finish so it is possible (and in a lot of cases probable) that when your project is complete youw will be out of work.

Some companies have enough work to keep a PM on staff others only hire temps to do the PM effort in that they can let them go at the end. Projects can run from months to years and I've had both kinds along with projects that were suppose to be over a year and cancelled after a month or two (and thus out of work).

Since PM's are generally well paid they are also the areas that are cut first in an economic down turn.

Since I've painted the worse here is the best. The field is always changing and you get to be in on the new technologies. You are generally in charge of your own success and are challenged every day to be the best facilitator possible between upper management and the technical staff. On the whole it is a lot of fun and you can really go into any area your are interested in. In my case I like the technology and I can learn new languages and methods while managing a team developing something that will benefit the company.

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