The art of project management is a prerequisite in almost all industries that aim to run smoothly and grow successfully. From an easy inception to a smooth sailing completion, project management is the key to the success of any business working across a myriad of projects.
Although there are full-time employees who are solely dedicated to the purpose, companies now also seek freelancers who look after the projects and lead them to completion. If you are wondering how to become a freelance project manager, strengthening your basics is the first step toward your goal. To begin your journey, we recommend to enroll in the best Project Management courses online to grab an understanding of the fundamentals.
Who is a Freelance Project Manager and What Do They Do?
A freelancer is someone who works independently to complete a specific task and gets paid for it. Businesses are always changing and trying out new ideas to divide tasks. As business owners find new ways to build teams, freelancing is becoming popular.
Freelancing allows individuals to work on projects flexibly and put their time and skills to use for a short duration. On the other hand, we believe that by hiring freelancers on several projects, organizations leverage a fresh perspective, enabling them to creatively improve their projects.
When it comes to project management, a freelance project manager job description comprises several responsibilities, which may include tasks like resource allocation, budget fixing, project designing, managing the team, time management, risk analysis, progress review, and so on.
Wondering how to step into the world of freelancing?
Let me help you explore some key steps to become a freelance project manager and glance through the benefits of a flexible workload through freelance project management!
How to Become a Freelance Project Manager in Simple Steps?
The role of a freelance project manager receives countless benefits, from flexibility to smooth time management. However, it can also be a daunting task to keep your skills at par with the requirements of the market.
Below are some steps that I believe can help you enrich your project management skills and start working as a freelancer. If you are wondering how to become a freelance project manager, let me elaborate the steps for you:
Step 1: Master Skills
Even if you have years of experience and are looking forward to re-entering the market as a freelancer, you need to brush up your skills and remain at par with the technological advancements or alterations in the company structure.
Top Skills Needed to Become a Freelance Project Manager
A project manager should have excellent management skills. As a freelance project manager, you should also be agile and efficient enough to execute tasks within a stipulated time.
I would suggest enrolling in a PMP classroom training session which will help you acquire the knowledge to understand where you stand in the current competitive landscape.
For now, let’s take a look at the required significant skills.
A. Soft Skills
In addition to effective management abilities, I believe a project manager must possess strong team leadership skills. They must excel as a leader and communicate their messages clearly to keep all stakeholders well-informed about project progress and potential course changes.
A freelance project manager must possess good negotiation skills, interpersonal skills, problem-solving abilities, etc., and deeply contribute to effective decision-making.
B. Hard Skills
For a freelance project manager, it's essential to have a solid understanding of diverse project management approaches like Agile, Waterfall, Scrum, Lean, and Prince2. Additionally, they should be skilled in utilizing a variety of project management software tools for a smooth implementation of management strategies.
I also suggest that anyone aspiring to work as a freelance project manager should practice project scheduling, project scoping, project forecasting, project tracking, reporting, and so on.
C. Other Competencies
Freelance project managers are expected to have sharp attention to detail, along with exceptional critical thinking skills, that are crucial to envision each project step clearly. Moreover, possessing a professional demeanour is another valuable asset for project managers.
Top Freelance Project Manager Certifications/Degree
Certifications help to validate your knowledge related to a specific field, thereby enhancing your chances of being hired by a client.
If you are wondering how to become a freelance project manager, let me brief it to you. You should have a bachelor’s degree in business management or any related field. Several certifications like PMP and PRINCE2 are available online that help strengthen your base and acquire the skills that will set you apart from your competitors.
Step 2: Determine Your Ideal Timeline
Different people have different learning paces. Choose the timeline that suits you the best.
A. Start Learning in a Format That Suits You
I believe it is entirely at an individual’s discretion which format they choose for learning. If you are an absolute beginner, you will have to start from scratch. On the other hand, if you are an experienced professional, you need to understand how technology has evolved over time and keep up with the changing developments to stay relevant in the industry.
B. How Long Does It Take to Become a Freelance Project Manager?
It takes 4-6 months to become a freelance project manager.
Step 3: Begin Building Your Portfolio/Resume
To market yourself as a freelance project manager, you must showcase your skills and present yourself as eligible during the interview.
A portfolio or resume will serve as a backup for all your claims about your knowledge and skills, enabling you to attract potential clients. It is important to include testimonials and recommendations from past clients so that they can offer added credibility to your portfolio.
Resume Template for Download
Your portfolio will be a representation of your skills and accomplishments. Hence, it is important to make it appear as presentable as possible. I suggest that candidates have a look some of these templates from Canva to create a compelling and winning portfolio.
Step 4: Where and how to find a job?
If you start delivering quality work to your clients, you will eventually start receiving referrals. Nevertheless, networking is the key to a successful freelance career. You will get most of the work by marketing yourself and expanding your network. You can upload your work to different online platforms to increase your visibility and gain the attention of potential clients.
A. Top Companies Hiring Freelance Project Managers
Leading companies like Amazon, Hubspot, Coinbase, PRA Health Sciences, IQVIA, Twilio, etc., hire individuals for remote or freelance project management jobs. In order to bag exciting work opportunities under these key players, ensure keeping with their job postings.
B. Job Outlook for Freelance Project Manager
If you are wondering how rewarding a career as a freelancer can be, I have some good news for you! This role is in high demand, as is the number of openings. Over the next ten years, the need for project managers will be high in the sectors like manufacturing, management and professional services, finance and insurance, construction, oil and gas, etc.
If you have a bachelor’s degree in project management or business management, you can consider becoming a freelance project manager. Additional certification may be beneficial in this regard. Most importantly, keeping up with the changing trends and upcoming requirements under companies is the key to the trove containing exciting new opportunities for freelancers like you.
Step 5: Ace the Interview
Once your resume or portfolio has highlighted your skills, the job interview becomes the platform for recruiters to evaluate your character and suitability for the freelance project manager role. It's essential to demonstrate effective communication, a positive outlook, honesty, integrity, and professional presentation during this phase.
A brief overview of the interview process + Tips
I would suggest a candidate to begin by carefully examining the companies he/she intends to apply for. Once you've narrowed down your options, take a closer look at the organization that intrigues you the most.
Review all the particulars in your portfolio and refine the instances you plan to mention during the interview. Additionally, you can formulate questions related to your field to enhance your performance.
Effectively following these tips will eventually land you a freelance project management role that can further nourish your candidature and attract future opportunities for you.
Who can Become a Freelance Project Manager?
Anyone with a basic understanding of business management or project management can pursue a career as a freelancer in project management. However, in my opinion, pursuing certification courses from the best institute for PRINCE2 certification- KnowledgeHut, can be an exceptional addition to amp up your resume.
Freelance Project Manager Requirements
Organizations usually extend a bunch of prerequisites that ascertain a candidate’s credibility as an efficient freelance project manager. Here are some of them.
- Candidate should have a bachelor’s degree in business management or any related field.
- Should have a certain experience in project management.
- Should be well-versed in using the tools and software for project management.
- Should have good verbal and written communication skills.
- Should also have the ability to meet stringent deadlines and work independently.
Why Pursue Project Management?
Pursuing project management offers numerous benefits and opportunities. It equips individuals with valuable skills to efficiently plan, execute, and oversee projects across various industries.
Whether you're drawn to organizing tasks, collaborating with teams, or driving successful outcomes, embracing project management can lead to a fulfilling and dynamic career.
What’s the Demand for Freelance Project Managers?
Seeking a career as a freelance project manager, but wondering what exactly are the perks?
The demand for freelance project managers is on the rise as more organizations are on the lookout to create hybrid employee models. As businesses adapt to dynamic market conditions, they often require specialized expertise for short-term projects. Freelance project managers are entrusted with the task of planning resources, team management, time management, budget fixing, designing the project, managing it, and reviewing its progress.
Considering their specialized expertise on specific topics, freelancers are sought-after across all industries- from product development to e-commerce and healthcare. This expertise also leads them to claim lucrative opportunities.
In India alone, freelance project managers claim an average salary of INR 11.3 Lakhs per annum, making it a profitable option to pursue. Let me provide you with a glimpse of freelance project salaries across leading countries to further help you believe why project management can be a rewarding career.
Freelance Project Manager Salary
While freelance project manager day rate varies following the complexity and workload of specific projects, let me take you through the average offered wages to freelancing project managers in top nations across the globe.
Average Annual Salary Per Annum
In conclusion, freelancing empowers individuals to work on projects at their convenience, providing an avenue to refine their skills. Those proficient in project management can seek out projects aligned with their interests and find clients whose needs match their skills and career aspirations.
However, this is only possible with the right set of skills and consistent upskilling.
If you are looking for tips for becoming a successful freelance project manager, my best tip for you is to enroll in KnowledgeHut’s Project Management exam training online and upskill yourself under the guidance of industry experts! From market trends to in-demand tools, at the end of this course, you will be equipped to take up any project with ease and a strong candidature to attract potential clients.