Regardless of what kind of business you are running or industry you are in, the only thing that is certain is that nothing is for certain.
In other words, change is the only constant thing, and the world of project management is no exception. Project management is one of the most dynamic fields, and in order to keep up, you need to stay on top of all the current trends and keep an eye on some future ones, as well.
There can be a number of reasons why your project management approach might change, ranging from market changes to introduction of new technologies and project management tools which make your job easier.
Regardless of the reason, it is your job to make sure that everything is running smoothly and that everybody is on the same page, as well as to make sure that your company or enterprise stays relevant for years to come.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at five project management trends that are set to shape the project management landscape in the near future. Keep on reading.
1. Project Management Automation Will Become Essential
According to research by Spiceworks, 57% of companies plan to implement IT automation by 2020, with as many as 48% of them planning to adopt IoT devices. While you now have access to a global market, which means more opportunities, it also means more competition. One of the solutions would be to scale your business.
However, that would require a lot more resources, especially when it comes to project management, which makes automation one of your best bets.
And there are plenty of solutions and tools which you can use to automate certain aspects of project management, ranging from marketing automation and automated email campaigns to implementation of workflow automation software.
According to Jim Byers, who works as a manager for Best Essay, project management automation has improved their staff productivity by 34%.
While you cannot automate everything, technology can do a lot of the heavy lifting for you by handling most of the menial and repetitive tasks which not only add up to a lot, but which also act as a distraction.
2. Higher Demand for Project Managers
According to the report by PMI, 87.7 million professionals will find themselves in project-related roles by 2027. For example, software development life-cycles feature multiple versions, tight deadlines, and numerous changes, all of which require competent project managers to make sure that everything stays on track.
In fact, one can argue that project managers will be the most important members of staff, especially when new technologies and approaches are implemented inside companies. They will also be needed in developing countries which are trying to catch up with all the latest developments on the global market.
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Project managers will have to change and grow as well. Their skillset, apart from their ability to manage large teams and projects, will need to include technical knowledge and soft skills in equal measure, which brings us to our next point.
3. Emotional Intelligence and Soft Skills Will Matter
Apart from being able to manage schedules and budgets for their projects, project managers will have to possess a high level of emotional intelligence, which is already becoming one of the trends.
Navigating all the project-related issues is a people issue at its core, and your emotional intelligence will determine how you will solve problems and guide your team toward success.
This is why we will also see a heightened demand for project managers which excel in social skills such as communication, collaboration, and leadership. Soft skills are actually the thing that propels our careers forward, even more so than technical knowledge.
In fact, companies nowadays are looking to find people, and that includes project managers, which are the right fit in terms of soft skills and human interaction.
As teams grow larger, project managers will need to be capable of solving complex issues and potential conflicts in a constructive manner, without letting the progress of their projects suffer as a result.
4. Remote Teams Are on the Rise
Thanks to high-speed internet, project management and collaboration tools which are cheap and readily available just about anywhere, companies and enterprises can choose from a global talent pool, which allows them to find the right people for the job.
Also, they are making full use of the fact that they no longer need to have permanent staff members, given the convenience that comes with the hiring of freelancers.
But, keeping track of remote teams and making sure they are collaborating with each other is a complex endeavor, which will pose a new challenge for project managers.
And they will be collaborating, because agile environments are here to stay. With roles becoming less and less defined, emphasis will be put on creating an effective communication strategy in order to bring out the most out of each team and delegating tasks in a timely manner.
5. Adoption of IoT and AI
Artificial intelligence is no longer something that is reserved for sci-fi novels. It is here to stay and it will seep into just about every pore of our existence.
There is growing concern that machines will replace us completely, which is not possible in the near future.
Even though artificial intelligence and machines are extremely capable, they still need people like project managers in order to point them in the right direction.
This means that project managers will be in charge of making the most out of this symbiotic relationship. If anything, AI will help them augment their skills.
As far as IoT is concerned, it is no longer restricted to our homes. Its reach has extended to cars and wearable devices which can gather data and send it to where it is needed.
Needless to say, this is something that could be used for management of remote teams and identification of optimal benchmarks and expectations.
It’s evident that project management will undergo numerous changes in the future. We hope that this article will help you prepare yourself better for all the latest developments. Good luck!