My recruitment career started in 2009 when I started in the financial services and banking category. Throughout my career I always understood just how critical it was for a recruiter to understand the role they are trying to fill.
Traditionally, recruitment has always been time consuming with no guarantee of success. More recently, following a boom in technology, there has been a move towards digitization & especially digital project management.
This shift has redirected my area of expertise away from filling financial services positions towards digitization. Below are some important factors to think of when looking for your digital project managers.
This is one of the most important traits for a project manager. They are the link to the client and therefore they must be able to effectively negotiate and use persuasion when necessary to ensure the success of the team and project. While doing some research I found out that the PMI (Project Management Institute) suggests that a project manager will spend 90% of their time communicating.
It is important that the candidate enjoys this part. This will help to establish if this role and client is a good fit for them. You want to see that fire in their belly when they talk about their most exciting clients and how they went the extra mile for that client. Someone who is not passionate on working with their clients is never going to be good in this role.
Find out how they met their deadlines and managed these within the timeframes set. Ask what tools they use to track their projects and how they managed the clients’ expectations. It is important to gauge their personality – are they fiery and temperamental? This will not work at all in this role or in many but it’s important to get the balance here. A strong PM will be able to push back but in a calm and assertive way. If this is them – great, this is what we want!
A great PM will be an excellent listener, who will listen to their stakeholders and clients. You can determine this when you are interviewing them. Do they listen well when you talk, do they interrupt you? Do they give good eye contact and show interest in what you are saying? You can also check their tone and body language. How are they coming across? Some PMs are very set in their ways and this is hard to change. They must be able to focus on being able to accept criticism and being self-aware.
Look forward to going to work
When you talk to your candidate you must get a good feeling from them that they believe that project management is an exciting challenge that’s critical to success. Good PMs will view this as a career and not a job. Great project managers plan, manage and handle the details that let others relax.
There are obviously more traits to look for when trying to source solid project managers, but these are my top 5 that helped me in my sourcing. I hope it helps you too.
A final note from me – over the years I saw many CVs that where excellent on paper and the ‘oh yes I do this and that’ type candidates BUT when I actually met them, their skills and persona’s did not match up. Therefore it is very important to meet all your candidates before submitting them to the hiring manager. Just remember any candidate can be amazing on paper!!