What do recruitment trends mean for project management training?

A new report from Arras People has shown that just 28% of project managers are happy in their current job. The leading providers of project management services in recruitment and HR have suggested that low wage increases are a factor in this worrying trend.

So how can businesses turn this around, and what does it mean in a landscape where many bright young things are looking to project management as a possible career choice?

Project management training and career choices: The statistics uncovered

According to the Project Management Confidence Index:

  • 74% of Private sector respondents are anticipating some level of growth in their current organisation during 2014.
  • 55% of respondents involved in recruiting programme and project management practitioners in 2014 reported that filling roles has been very difficult/difficult.
  • 40% of practitioners who have started a new job in 2014 have seen wage increases of over 8% on their last salary.
  • 28% of employees are unhappy in their current role.
  • 46% of practitioners cannot find a new role that meets a desired level of remuneration.
  • 48% of inactive contractors have been contracting for less than 3 years.

It seems that although businesses are viewing the future as promising, and welcoming project management techniques into their corporate skills sets, project managers themselves are more disaffected.

As John Thorpe, Managing Director of Arras People, suggests:

“The message for all organisations and hirers of project managers is clear. Staff retention policies need to be taken seriously and acted on now if they are to avoid a talent shortage as the growth in the UK economy accelerates.”

So what can we do to retain project management talent?

Arras People, who will be exhibiting at Project Challenge in October, have 3 key suggestions for organisations struggling to retain through remuneration alone:

Pay attention to project management training: So many project managers out there are “accidental” – finding themselves thrown into this highly skilled arena with little support. Just as important as formal training in the project management tools and methodologies they are expected to use is as strong CIPD programme. Clear lines of management, support through coaching and mentoring, and creating a positive atmosphere where issues and difficulties can be discussed “safely” all help to create an environment where budding young PMs can excel.

Embrace project management tools into your infrastructure: A project manager needs the right tools to do the job, yet this is often underestimated and a bone of serious contention. Often, decisions on tool kits can be made without their involvement and become the realm of IT and IT alone. That’s further compounded by the bewildering array of project management products on the market. But by ensuring that your projects managers can input into the tools they are expected to use, your business could significantly impact on the efficiency of delivery and results – as well as avoiding costly mistakes.

Encourage new project management solutions: These days project management is a fast moving space. New ideas, fresh perspectives and innovative solutions are being developed all the time. If you have young, enthusiastic project managers on board then harness the enthusiasm. Sent them to project management exhibitions, encourage them to explore project management suppliers, and let them be your conduit to the latest innovations. Their thirst for new knowledge will be satisfied, and your business could well benefit as a result.

Arras People will be exhibiting at Project Challenge on the 14th and 15th October 2014 at Olympia, London. For free delegate registration visit our registration pages now.