How to find and hire the best project manager for your organization

Interviews can be stressful for both you and the candidates. Hiring decisions have a major impact on your team dynamics. Finding the right person can be nerve-wracking, no matter how eager you may be to bring someone on board.
This stress is even more intense if you are hiring project managers. Why? You’re hiring someone to manage your budgets, staffing, client relations, process, and ultimately the bottom line of your business. This is a critical hire and most candidates don’t have a resume to show their experience. This is quite scary!
The good news? There are many great project managers available, and they are easy to find. It’s as simple as defining the role of project manager in your organization and identifying the experience that your ideal candidate brings to the table.
These criteria will help you find a superstar project manager to join your team.
What are you looking for in a project manager
It is difficult to hire project managers. It’s likely that you will receive a lot of resumes when you post a job posting. It can be difficult and time-consuming to sort through all of them and find project manager candidates worthy of an interview.
Here are some criteria to help you choose a project manager that is right for you:
Project management experience
What qualities are you looking for from your next project manager? Someone who has been there before. If so, take a look at their past work and the types of projects that they have worked on.
Industry is an important consideration. However, unless it’s vital for you and your company, don’t need an exact match. I would rather focus on:
Project size
Size of the company
Time spent in each organization
A project manager needs to be comfortable for 6-9 months before they can truly feel at home in their role. If you see someone who has given up on their previous project manager roles within this time frame, it’s likely they either didn’t give it their all or just weren’t ready.
Keep in mind that even though experience can give you an idea of how a candidate works, it doesn’t tell you what they’re capable of. If you are impressed enough by the work of a project manager, you will likely be excited about what you can do.
Education and certification in project management
Are you looking for PMP certification for project managers in your company? Perhaps you are looking for a ScrumMaster certified. You’ll be able quickly sort through all those resumes.
It is great to have guidelines for hiring in regards to education and industry knowledge. It’s important to communicate this in your job posting so that you don’t waste anybody’s time.
There was no specific education for project managers for a long time. Now, students are graduating college with the right education (or even a degree) to become project managers. If you are looking for someone with formal training, then you’re in luck!
There are many great project managers who come from different educational backgrounds. It is best to be open-minded, even if you are not a fan of your alma mater.
Interests both personal and professional
Is it silly to add rock climbing to a resume? Because if the hiring manager shares the same interest, they might be more inclined to meet the person.
What if their interests are more focused on professional goals and activities? You’ll be more inclined than others to talk to someone who has taken courses, participated in local events, or attended project management conferences. Before you start looking at all the resumes, make sure you are focusing on what is most important to you and your company.
Do not judge potential hires based on their resume design, no matter what your experience. It can tell a lot about the person they are.