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Program Management Careers

We offer self-employed contract program managers a place to display their management skills to customers

A program manager is involved in every step of a manufacturing process and plays an integral role in quality assurance, scheduling, materials, management, and manufacturing performance. Contract program managers can use their management skills to help cross-functional teams complete the client’s project.

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OUR EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS:

4-YEAR BACHELOR’S DEGREE
  • Project Management
  • Program Management
  • Other Management Major
2-YEAR ASSOCIATE DEGREE
  • Project Management
  • Program Management
  • Other Management Major
PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATION
  • International Association of Project Managers
  • Project Management Association
  • American Academy of Project Management
  • Project Management Institute
OR +2 YEARS OF INDUSTRY EXPERIENCE
  • A manager of multiple projects or experience in project management.
  • A project manager could apply for a program management position.

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Program managers will be responsible for managing the lifecycle of a project

Generally, a typical job description for a program manager will contain the following:

• Program managers must estimate the project liabilities.
• A manager is responsible for cost estimations.
• They must work with their teams on inventory control, information technology systems, scheduling, and production planning programs.
• A program manager must ensure manufacturing and design control methods are in-place.
• Program management must ensure that clients meet their obligations under all subcontract agreements and meet all timeline requirements.
• They may determine what professional or technical skills are required for a project.
• A program manager will define how their client can improve productivity, reduce waste, and improve efficiency.

A program managers’ personal experience will drive which projects they could be selected for on the engineering services platform, as the different clients will require specific skills for their open program management project.

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MONITOR AND INFLUENCE THE MANUFACTURING PROCESS

COMMUNICATION SKILLS

Usually, a candidate will need to interact with clients face-to-face, so having good communication skills as a program manager is critical. The most important skill set in program management is communicating the project goals between cross-functional teams and each team member. Working closely with each team member will help move information quickly through the proper management channels.

TECHNICAL UNDERSTANDING

It is important to understand how the client’s technology, engineering, and equipment functions. To lead a project, program managers must understand the manufacturing process to know how to identify qualified applicants to assist with the project. 

LEADERSHIP

A manager must develop strong leadership traits and make the right business decisions during critical times. This may be the most difficult trait to learn. However, during difficult times, team members quickly learn who the true leaders are in program management.

PROBLEM-SOLVING

Work experience in an environment similar to the prospective client will help give you a better understanding of how to handle different issues during the project. Program managers need to think fast and make quick decisions on individual projects.

NETWORKING

Program managers cannot do this job alone; that’s why knowing the team’s strengths and weaknesses will give management a better understanding of what each project can accomplish. In addition, a program manager may need to connect with project management, a product manager, or human resources to meet workforce needs.

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PROGRAM MANAGER SALARY

Program managers will most certainly enjoy the wide range of job possibilities.

Management of industrial automation and systems often leads to above-average salary compensation.

Depending on the career path, program managers with considerable technical skills outside of management, and years of experience, will earn a wage higher than the average salary.

Contract program managers understand that rates vary per project, and are dependent on experience, skills required, and the location of a project.

A project manager may earn a similar salary since the management roles are closely related.

Are you interested in learning more about contract program management careers?

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THE CAREER PATH TO EXPECT AS A SELF-EMPLOYED CONTRACT PROGRAM MANAGER

PROJECT OVERSIGHT

A program manager could be on a project from conception to completion and must adjust their skills to meet the client’s needs. They may also help with project management on individual projects. As a project manager, the contractor would focus on smaller projects within the business.

MULTITASKING

A contractor working in management may be asked to supervise multiple projects within an organization and guide manufacturing application processes or equipment installation. Therefore, they must work closely with project management or other teams within the client’s organization.

PEOPLE FIRST

Program managers will coordinate with several individual groups and work with multiple business partners or key suppliers. Program management careers are not all the same, but once a manager realizes they are in the people-first business, leading teams becomes less of a challenge. It may not be directly in any job title, but managers are responsible for the well-being of the people they manage. Management must focus on giving everyone an equal opportunity to succeed.

TIMING

The project must be completed on time. Using their experience and communication skills, they must focus on properly communicating their client’s needs to complete the project on time. In addition, program managers will use their project management skills to complete each minor task on time to ensure the overall timing of the program is kept. 

BUDGET

The program manager’s goal should be to be at, or below, the cost targets set by the client. Meeting the client’s budget targets on the individual projects is critical to the overall success of a program manager. In the United States, this is probably the most scrutinized aspect of project management. 

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