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How Do I Get Project Management Work Experience?

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  • Written By: Alex Newth
  • Edited By: Angela B.
  • Last Modified Date: 24 November 2016
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Gaining project management work experience can be tough, but there are a few ways you can do it. If you are currently working on a project, then you can talk with the project manager about what he or she does and request to be given jobs that will give you project management work experience. Another way to gain such work experience is by asking if you can be promoted to project manager or assistant project manager. Some organizations need a project manager but cannot pay any money, and taking such a position can give you work experience you can use to find a paying job. Training programs with realistic tasks and settings also can be used to gain work experience.

If you are working as part of a project staff, then you can talk with the project manager and request jobs or tasks that can help you gain project management work experience. At the same time, watching the project manager can help give you a sense of experience, because you will understand what is required of a project manager. To have this experience recognized by an external business, it may be beneficial to have the project manager write a letter of recommendation and highlight your experience with him or her.

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Another way to gain project management work experience is to ask to be promoted to a project management, or assistant management, position. This may work if you are responsible, know about the project manager’s tasks and there is an open position that no one else is filling. If the business does accept you into this position, then you will gain direct work experience. While a project assistant manager typically has fewer duties that the manager, this is considered a stepping stone and will usually be accepted by external businesses as work experience.

Volunteering your project management services to certain establishments can be beneficial, though you may not be paid. Some establishments with which you can check include non-profit businesses, schools and new businesses. They do not need to pay you and they may not have other volunteers with these skills, so you may be able to get this position without much difficulty.

In lieu of direct project management work experience, realistic training programs also may suffice if you are looking for a project management position. These training programs should teach you about what is expected from a project manager, and accredited programs may be accepted by businesses as equivalent to work experience. If you do not currently work with a project staff or have any work experience, then it may be wise to go through the training program before volunteering so you know what to do as a project manager.

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