Project manager construction / public works

Construction/public works project managers work for construction companies or in the public sector. Their role is to act as a liaison between all the people working on a job site. They need to know how to balance the needs and requirements of clients, suppliers and contractors, as well as make sure the budget and schedule are observed.

Their first task is to negotiate contracts that minimize expenses and set up a schedule to be respected by all parties. They then harmonize the practices of the various players involved so as to facilitate work and agreement on the site.

Using their employer’s management tools, project managers systematically monitor the quality and profitability of current files. As applicable, they write reports detailing project progress and/or changes.

In order to ensure proper process control and project management, project managers need to continually stay up to date with amendments to federal and provincial construction laws and regulations.

REQUIRED SKILLS

  • technical or university education
  • comfortable in technical fields
  • advanced knowledge of construction and legal constraints
  • command of the accountability chain
  • supervisory skills
  • proficiency in English (French for Quebec jobs)

DESIRED QUALITIES

  • ability to coordinate several teams
  • excellent organization skills
  • knack for negotiating
  • availability
  • thoroughness
  • composure in dealing with problems
  • responsiveness
  • ability to learn
  • influence
  • charisma

A PROFESSIONAL’S ACCOUNT

Patricia L., project manager in public works, Saskatchewan: After 10 years in the field as a technician, Patricia L. has been working as a project manager since July 2008. Negotiating, supervising and problem solving; her job requires responsiveness, adaptability and a capacity for lifelong learning. Read more…

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