I have received an email lately from Mike and Mark about the current US economic situation, mainly highlighting the issue of managers being fired.

Thus, I have made a small research (I run a website on Project Management Jobs) to see if the Project Management Job Sector is being affected by the current unfortunate situation in the US economy (that will hopefully end very soon). I have generated a report from March 2008 through August 2008.

422 March-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States
425 April-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States
272 May-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States
142 June-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States
462 July-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States
801 August-2008 Project Management Jobs In United States

What's interesting is that in August, the number of Project Management jobs nearly doubled over July.

I will later publish the results of all countries (not just the US).

AManagerTool's picture

I'd be very careful about drawing conclusions based upon six months of data unless I had the same data from a few other six month periods. You could be looking at normal cyclic budget cycles.

Questions to ask yourself:

When do companies need PM's? Answer: When they have projects.

When do companies have projects? Answer: When they have money.

When do companies have money? Answer: When the fiscal year starts and towards the third quarter. Year start - All the new projects get going, 3rd quarter - Money that was underspend suddenly becomes available....most companies still subscribe to use it or loose it budget cycles.

Your data seems to follow this pattern.

stephenbooth_uk's picture

A couple of further questions come to mind:

* Are these perm (or at least long term) or temp/contract PM roles?
* What sort of projects are they managing?

Companies are looking to cut costs, two common ways to cut costs are layoffs and outsourcing/offshoring. Mass layoffs and outsourcing/offshoring can be managed as projects. If you don't have in house PMs or maybe want to keep information out of the hands of the employees then hiring in some temp or contract PMs to handle it may be the way to go. I'm sure I've seen a film with a plot a bit like that.


pmhut's picture

AManagerTool: You're absolutely right, what you're saying is probably the only explanation for the jobs increase.

Stephen: The jobs are mixed (can be contracts/temp/permanent, etc...), as well as the type of projects being managed. I'm afraid it's going to be very hard for me to give you stats on this. Btw, I only have stats for 2008.

You raise an interesting point Stephen, layoffs managed by Project Managers (it does give the Project Manager a gloomy reputation).

Let me know if you need further stats on the subject.