One of the most cumbersome aspects of the hiring process is the sheer number of applicants and resumes received by HR departments and professionals. Since the filing and storage of applications is more efficient when you improve your records management, searchability is improved. Making better use of your time better starts with getting a good sense of what's working now, and what isn't. Before you start hunting down the little time wasters, focus instead on what would make life more enjoyable and meaningful to you and the people you care about. In this article, you will discover the insights – based on the best research – to help you reach that $100,000 salary. 2) The price of paying for “the American Dream” is $130,000 per year for a family of four in the United States according to USA Today. 3) An annual household income of $111,000 puts you in the top 20% (the top 1% starts at $360,000) of income earners in the United States in 2011 according to NPR. 4) If you saved $10,000 (10% of $100,000 income) for 25 years and earned a 7% return, your investments would reach $632,000 dollars (If you make invest and save for another 6 years, you would reach $1 million).
Clearly, there’s a lot to be gained from reaching the $100,000 project manager salary level. There are also career benefits to earning six figures that could beyond the personal benefits outlined above. Now we understand the importance and value of obtaining a six figure income, how do we get there? In the Project Management Salary Survey (8th Edition), PMI collected data from over 13,000 project managers in the United States.
Knowing when and how to use all the tools and techniques of project management takes time to learn. For Early Career Project Managers: If you have less than 10 years of experience, reaching the $100,000 salary will be challenging. For Mid To Late Career Project Managers: In many industries, ten years of experience starts to open new experiences.
When you’re deep in the details on a project, it is easy to lose track of the benefits.
Enthusiastic Achievers: This elite group regularly looks for educational experiences to develop their skills and knowledge. Successfully completing an undergraduate or graduate degree is associated with an income over $100,000.
The high project manager salary data reported in this survey suggests interesting possibilities. Of the thirteen specialized techniques covered, the median ranged from $98,000 to $108,000.
We can learn two important lessons from the stampede into the financial industry by freshly minted MBAs.
Lesson Two: If your work has an impact on high value activities – such as taking a company public – you have an incredible impact. Keep these concepts in mind as we discover the industries that pay the highest project manager salaries.
You may have read the statistics earlier in this section and said to yourself, “Hey, I’m in the resources industry and I earn far less than $100,000? If you are already in an industry that tends to reward project managers handsomely , congratulations!
In 2013, there were 200,000 international patent applications filed – 57,000 from the United States.
In 2013, UK publishers released 184,000 revised and new books (though the average person reads one to five books per year). You know what, I opened the page on my computer’s browser and left it open for more than a week despite the temptation of closing it, hopping I would read it when I got the time. Poring over resumes is one of the most time-intensive tasks involved in talent acquisition, and with the influx of applications, ita€™s easy to overlook talent a€“ particularly because HR doesna€™t have the time to thoroughly study every resume.
At the basest level, they allow you to establish a process to receive all forms, resumes and supplementary materials electronically within a single online system, which logically stores all information against a candidatea€™s name and automatically routes it to relevant personnel. High quality records management systems allow you to use tagging, metadata and other identifiers to organize information, which can be easily retrieved using a search function. In particular, paper management requires a high volume of administration, though even non-automated electronic management carries inefficiencies.
I’m going to focus on how you can achieve that level in a full time role as an employee ( consulting and entrepreneurship are other worthwhile pathways to that goal: those options are outside the scope of today’s article). Yet, who can deny its central importance and influence on nearly every aspect of daily life?


For years, it has been a signal of success and a sign that “you’ve arrived.” That’s true even today, despite inflation. This classic career book, recommended by Manager Tools, is focused at senior managers and executives. Or you could start by asking friends in your network if they know anybody who knows of six figure opportunities. You need to start by discovering the best opportunities and capabilities of six figure project managers. That’s why PMI asks for a detailed description for applicants who apply for the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. If you’re already earning that salary with less than ten years of experience, congratulations!
In law and accounting, professionals often become partners (or they are very close to achieving the partnership). Have you ever noticed that some job postings will include phrases such as “progressive experience”? In that case, your short term responsibility is to deliver that project to best of your ability. They regard their PDU requirements to maintain the PMP certification as a minimum, rather than a maximum. If you’re discouraged, then this section will help you to realize the importance of education in your career. In addition, the educational categories from the US Census and PMI’s survey are identical; however, they are close enough to facilitate a comparison.
If you’re considering going back to school to finish your first degree, Figure 2 may give you some encouragement. If you already possess a degree, then you may be able to significantly increase your income by transitioning into project management. The salary survey collected data on thirteen types of specialization including change management, critical chain project management, resource management and program management. It appears that technique specialization has an impact (though not as drastic as the differences among physicians). According to CNBC, approximately one third of Harvard MBA graduates go into financial services (with many focused on investment banking and hedge funds). Think of it this way: if you make an investment bank an additional $2 million in profit, then a $100,000 bonus almost looks small. For example, two of the industries (resources and engineering) are dominated by engineers, a very highly paid profession that requires years of advanced study.
That just goes to show that you can’t always rely on broader economic trends to select your industry. If you are currently in engineering and desire fresh challenges where you can make a greater impact, project management may be a great choice. Despite these challenges, organizations and companies are determined to improve and make changes.
As a general observation, projects with larger budgets have more moving parts, more risk and greater scrutiny from management. I adapted Kammy Hatnes' pyramid structure to show the increasingly difficult management skills you must master at each level and to also display how these management skills build on each other to help you achieve success in your management career. This means that all applications can be stored more effectively for future use, without taking up tons of space in the office. Better document management allows you to significantly reduce the time expended on recruitment and hiring because it automates much of the manual tasks, improves workflows and makes the retrieval of information much easier. You can tally up the categories and understand what the 168 hours we all have each week look like for you.
Is there a reason these tasks are there, or could you find a way to minimize them, or skip them completely? In the minds of many readers, a six figures income brings all the status of joining the executive suite. Fortunately, the Project Management Institute (PMI) has taken the guess work out of earning a high income. Under the current requirements, PMP candidates must have a minimum of 4500 hours of project management experience (7500 hours are required if you do not have a four year bachelor’s degree). If not, keep building on your experience, knowledge and check that you are in a high earning industry (to be covered later in this article). If you have delivered significant success on your projects and still have not reached the $100,000 salary level, then you need to give some thought to your compensation.
That means organizations are looking for professionals who are constantly growing their skills and experience.


If you lose track of your project’s benefits (especially increased revenue or efficiency benefits), your executive and project sponsor may forget the value of your projects. They take a broad view of education: self study through books and courses, attending events and learning from others in their network. The second approach looks at the benefit of learning and applying specific project management techniques such as critical chain. If your organization provides funding or other support to earn a degree, then the return on effort is absolutely worth the effort. One note of caution before I reveal the data – the samples for these groups are relatively small and likely less accurate and definitive than the larger groups previously discussed. Clearly, specialization can give you an edge and it does put you in the $100,000 project manager salary area. In a sense, people in these highly demanding industries are being paid as a reward for dedicating a great deal – more than the average in our economy – to their employers.
To be fair, the median salary in financial services is nothing to sneeze at either ($106,000).
In either case, advancement to a higher project manager salary will be easier if you switch to an industry where your contribution is likely to be valued. From that starting point, you may have to grow your capabilities in other ways – such as earning the PMP certification or taking on more complex projects.
The largest collections in Europe totalled a few hundred manuscript books – texts that were copied by hand. Having this box here makes it really difficult to read your article and even read my own typing feedback. Much of the data or figures do not directly reflect my context, as it is mainly based on the North America, but I, generally, find it as an invaluable input to somebody like me who wants to challenge himself in project management. As you develop your skill as a leader, as you make the transition from manager to leader, you will achieve the success you truly want in your management career. Yet, many businesses still battle inefficiencies in their recruitment process that make it difficult to recruit and hire the perfect candidate for the job. You will have more and more options to choose your projects and increase your satisfaction. Your limited experience in those areas may be holding you back from taking on more ambitious projects.
As an exercise, look back over the last twelve months and write down three benefits your organization received from your projects (e.g. Ask for a short meeting with the person in your organization who makes project decisions (e.g.
Fortunately, the Project Management Institute predicts that demand for project managers will continue to grow in the coming years. It is no secret that the industry offers high compensation and a degree of prestige (though both can involve many hours of grinding through data in Microsoft Excel). Career advancement can be accelerated with the right ideas but we can’t achieve miracles just yet!
Of course, you will need to tailor this concept to meet the parameters of your organization.
Each level of the Management Skills Pyramid is listed below and is discussed in more detail on the linked pages.The Management Skills Pyramid, Level 1Level 1 of the Management Skills Pyramid shows the basic skills a manager must master just to get the job done. Typically, these inefficiencies can be attributed in large part to poor document management. Even when you control for formal education as a variable, project managers earn more than the general population. If you started your career as a project manager two years ago, a six figure compensation package is likely some years away.
As a result, improving your document management can in fact improve your recruitment process. Celebrate what’s working for you, because knowing that some good stuff is happening makes even the busiest person feel in control of her life.
If you are not managing larger and more complex projects, it may appear that your skills have plateaued. By taking the time to express your interest and build the relationship, you are much more likely to land better projects in the future.



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