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I am currently an IT manager of a small application support group. I am regularly involved in the entire SDLC on major implementation projects in a BA role well as regular maintenance and change management. The issue I am having is that I want to change jobs to Project Manager but I find myself being rejected too often by recruiters as having no prior experience in the PM role. I'm looking for a way to quantify and explain my role on the implementation projects primarily as a BA and then responsible for support the system in production.

Peter.westley's picture

FR-NYC,

For a hiring manager to employ you in a step-up situatuion from your current role they need to be satisfied through two things: 1) That you have either already satisfactorily done what the job requires or 2) that you are capable of learning (quickly) what you have not. There's also probably a 3) and that is what do you bring as value add that they do not already have.

My suggestion is not to try to paint your experience as something it's not. You need to focus on the exceptional results you have achieved as an IT manager and BA and the transferrable skills you can bring to a PM role. For example, managing IT projects with all budget, resource and time constraints met as well as that ever critical 'people' side of things.

In addition, it always easier to get the 'promotion' where you're at first where they know you, then move companies to where they may not. That way you're only jumping one hurdle instead of two. Perhaps you could arrange some formal PM training for yourself to show that you're serious?

Hope that helps,

Peter

FR-NYC's picture

I guess the main problem I'm having is figuring out how to quantify me experience as a BA and Manager. At my company typically the PM manages the project, the budget and the resources for an implementation. Latelely now that I have direct reports I am the liason between the PM and the sys admins for system X,Y,Z especially for cross functional projects. However once the project is done I find it difficult to 'quantify' my impact on the success of the project or the system once it's live. I guess I'm not sure how to measure my own success...

Nik's picture

Project management can be broken down into a discrete set of tasks. I would list your impact on each of those tasks, and even include statements along the lines of "provided budgetary results and maintained project expectations in concert with Project Manager" or something like that, based on what you actually do.

Also, while this may be heresy here in the land of the minimalist resume, but when moving laterally into a new role, the "skills" section may be valuable to detail skills you've worked on developing but haven't had ample opportunity to practice in a professional environment.

I am currently trying to migrate from an IT/operational role to a marketing/product lead role, and have found that detailing my specific competencies as they pertain to the exact job description has gotten me a couple interviews I would have missed with nothing more than a list of my previous employment. This list of skills is just 1-2 lines listing the specific skills listed in the job description which I have, but have not been able to identify in my work experience.

As for quantifying your impact, simply list the impact of the overall project on your business and honestly describe your role in bringing it to bear. "Acted as BA on $1.5MM widget manufacturing project" would be a completely fair statement. You could also put in a note that you were on-schedule/on-budget, or (if you have this information) you could put the percentage of time you were, in fact, on schedule and budget.

My own resume lists that I eliminated budget overruns and reduced schedule slippage by 75% after I came onboard. That fulfilled my role as a PM, even though I can't take full credit for the revenue/savings the project generated.