Attrition + Expansion = Significant Career Opportunities in Project Management

Attrition + Expansion = Significant Career Opportunities in Project Management

Attrition + Expansion = Significant Career Opportunities in Project Management banner

“Project management is the art and science of making things happen,” says J.D. Meier, author of Getting Results the Agile Way. And there’s never been a greater need on a global scale for skilled, innovative project management professionals who can drive change and make things happen. And that need is only going to grow over coming years.

The Project Management Institute’s (PMI) Project Management Job Growth and Talent Gap 2017–2027 report is 10 pages of powerful data. The information proves to anyone thinking about getting a master’s degree in project management that the time and money spent is well worth the investment. Here’s why.

There’s a growing project management talent gap.

PMI states, “Across the globe, there’s a widening gap between employers’ need for skilled project management workers and the availability of professionals to fill those roles.”

Three main catalysts driving this gap include:

  1. A significant increase in the number of jobs requiring project-oriented skills. Industries that were traditionally less project-oriented are now adopting a more project-oriented model as they recognize the benefits of goal attainment and strategic focus. In the United States, this change is especially apparent in the health care, publishing, and professional services industries. PMI reports that the health-care sector represents the biggest percentage increase in project-oriented jobs among sectors analyzed in the United States, with a 17 percent growth rate.
  2. High attrition rates. As seasoned project management professionals reach retirement age in large numbers, many project-related jobs are opening up. PMI estimates that in the United States, attrition in manufacturing “will cause nearly all open positions—97 percent—while in management and professional services just over half the openings—52 percent—will occur for the same reason.”
  3. The entire global economy has become more project-oriented in recent years. There’s been a dramatic increase in demand for project talent, especially in rapidly developing economies such as China and India.

There’s an enormous (and costly) project management skills gap.

The Anderson Economic Group (AEG) conducted PMI’s 2017 assessment of project management employment and industry activity. AEG projected the size of the talent shortage for project management-oriented occupations of industries that rely heavily on project management in the U.S. and 10 additional countries. (United Kingdom, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Japan, India, Germany, China, Canada, Brazil, and Australia).

By 2027, employers will need 87.7 million individuals working in project management-oriented roles, the report found. These roles include:

  • Project managers
  • Program managers
  • Portfolio managers
  • Schedulers
  • Business analysts
  • Change management experts

AEG also developed a method to estimate the economic costs from failure to prepare new project talent for future job openings. The risk posed by a shortage of qualified talent could result in a potential loss of US$207.9 billion in GDP (gross domestic product) through 2027 for the 11 countries analyzed.

Job opportunities will be global and across industries.

When AEG and PMI analyzed project-oriented employment opportunity due to expansion and attrition in the 11 countries studied, the firms determined project-related job growth is expected to be 33 percent collectively.

The largest number of job openings in project-oriented sectors from 2017–2027 in the 11 countries analyzed are found in: Manufacturing and construction (9.7 million), information services and publishing (5.5 million), finance and insurance (4.6 million), management and professional services (1.7 million), utilities (279,000), and oil and gas (49,000).

When estimating employment outlook by country, AEG and PMI predict that project management jobs in project-oriented industries in China will grow from 34.9 million to 46 million from 2017 to 2017. India, the United States, and Japan will also experience notable growth.

On an annualized basis, PMI estimates employers worldwide will need to fill nearly 2.2 million new project-oriented roles each year through 2027!

Bright future for project professionals

Along with the 2.1 million project-related job opportunities estimated to open up in the U.S. over the next decade, professionals can expect to be financially rewarded for their skills. PMI reports in the U.S. in 2017, “wages of project management-oriented workers in projectized industries were far higher on average than wages of non-project-oriented professionals—a premium of 82 percent.”

PMI’s ninth edition salary survey shows an annual median of $108,200 for project managers working in the U.S. In a 2017 article for CIO, project management professional Moira Alexander includes a detailed set of charts showing annual U.S. median salaries for project managers by years of work experience, certification status, position, project team size, and project management technique.

JWU launches Operations & Project Management master’s degree online

To help meet this high demand for project management professionals equipped with the necessary mix of technical, leadership, strategic, and business management competencies, Johnson & Wales University has launched an online MS – Operations & Project management program.

Students in the operations and project management program study contemporary topics and skill development in lean techniques, total quality management, Six Sigma, operations management, and project, program, and portfolio management through a lens of team dynamics.

Our accelerated, career-focused curriculum features eight-week courses that let earn your M.S. degree at your own pace. You’re taught by faculty who are industry experts with years of professional experience. The challenging coursework is designed to build your management skills while providing you with an experiential education, which gives you real-world exposure.

If you’re ready to help close the talent gap in project management and take your career to the next level, please contact Johnson & Wales University College of Online Education to learn more about our Operations & Project Management graduate program. Complete the “Request Info” form on this page, call 855-JWU-1881, or email: [email protected]

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