A program manager (similar to a portfolio manager and a strategic program manager) is the person who leads, oversees, and coordinates activities concerning a set (portfolio) of projects for an organization. They are accountable for ensuring that all projects are accomplished according to company project guidelines and for fulfilling project and program strategies.
Their main duties include initiating, developing, planning, running, and closing projects, programs, and tasks to achieve the goals and objectives for each. The program manager may also be responsible for creating and maintaining the policies and procedures for the project management organization within a company.
Recruiting an outstanding program manager for your organization can be a tough and frustrating process, from scouring for talent to filtering through program manager resumes, but BeamJobs is here to assist you. It all starts with your job description. Check out our excellent examples and guidance on how to create a great program manager job description, so you can attract and hire the best people.
The job: Super Goods is an up-and-coming producer and supplier of durable goods for original equipment manufacturers. Our program manager position needs someone who can step up and lead programs with gusto and drive teams to deliver outstanding results. Our PMO is a very busy and dynamic area. We are looking for someone who is a self-starter and can have an immediate impact by taking the lead to enhance the organization and discipline in our project portfolio. They must also be able to strongly partner with our business leaders to create successful products and expand our market share.
What you’ll be doing: The mission of this role is to oversee numerous initiatives and ensure all project management processes are followed according to best practices. You will work with our project teams (business and technical) to deliver world-class results and business outcomes.
Benefits: We offer a competitive compensation plan with salary and bonus, health insurance, 401(k), option plan, and unlimited vacation policy.
About the company: Super Goods was founded in 2010 in Killington, Vermont, and we are expanding rapidly to supply a growing number of major companies in the northeast. Our extensive product lines require an increasing number of initiatives to support them. We rely heavily on the program management organization to effectively deliver our new products. Our company is a traditional manufacturing business, but we are a highly team-oriented group. We are looking for a strong, innovative team player to join our family.
Job details: Gaming the World is a software development firm focused on creating cutting-edge online games for computer and mobile platforms. Our company was established in 2018 and is headquartered in historic Montgomery, Alabama. The technical program manager function is a key role within our company and is a business-facing position that provides mission-critical services in support of our products.
Role: This position requires high levels of expertise, aptitude, and enthusiasm in executing multiple crucial functions.
Benefits: Our strong compensation plans include salary and bonus, full benefits including health insurance, 401(k), option plan, and unlimited vacation policy.
About the company:
Gaming the World leverages cutting-edge technology and methods to create market-leading games. Our tech is a key tool, but our team is the most important advantage we have. We need a strong leader who is team-focused and can work with highly creative and skilled developers to create the best products. The technical program manager not only provides technical expertise but must also be strongly knowledgeable in project best practices for program management. If you want to work in a fast-moving and challenging creative environment, then this is the place for you!
Job details: Solid Products Industries’ main headquarters is located in busy downtown Houston, Texas, and is a manufacturer of industrial and oil field tools. We are seeking a senior program manager who is an expert in assessing business requirements and devising program strategies to achieve organizational objectives. You must be highly results-driven and able to work in a very fast-moving and dynamic environment.
Responsibilities: As a key position within Solid Products’ organization, this position is a leader and an individual contributor. The senior program manager also examines marketing analysis, research initiatives, and go-to-market strategies to ensure that all projects and programs are aligned with the company’s strategy. They also serve as a PM subject-matter expert, providing direction and guidance to all project managers within the organization.
Benefits: Our compensation packages are very competitive, commensurate with experience, and include salary and bonus, full coverage insurance, and vacation time.
About the company: Solid Products Industries has been providing outstanding products and services for over 20 years. We are a leading manufacturer of tools for the oil industry and are a large company but operate as a close-knit family. Our company is looking for a talented manager and program leader who can develop business and product lines. If you are looking for a fun, challenging, team-oriented organization with great opportunities, then look no further than Solid Products Industries.
Job description writing is not easy. This goes for any role, but it can be especially difficult for the program manager role because it covers such a large set of skills, and that can be very different from company to company. It is challenging to create a job description that sufficiently describes the role but is not too long.
Brevity is paramount. Jobseekers tend to skip job descriptions that are very long. Or, they will quickly scan through them and may miss key points that make your company or job role superior to other opportunities. Make sure to include all the information that shows how your job and/or company is unique, but keep the overall description as short as possible. Do not include generic skills or tasks that almost any job would have. The goal is to sell the job and your organization to the reader. You want to make them want that job!
One of the best ways to describe what a job role requires is to give examples of issues a program manager in your company needs to be able to handle. Another way to show the challenges a role needs to address is by explaining why you are hiring for the job or describing a gap that needs to be filled. Give specific examples. If the role is open because you are expanding, then use that. Always be specific and brief.
Avoid listing too many job requirements. Having a long list has been shown to lower the diversity of the candidates that will apply. In today’s world, it is important to encourage diversity in your company and remove anything that may dissuade women and minorities from applying for your opening. Always use wording and phrases that don’t reinforce preconceived biases in your job description.
Program managers must be able to drive many complex tasks simultaneously. They have to be able to quickly and efficiently identify essential tasks and clearly communicate goals and objectives to diverse sets of people. Program managers also have to motivate people to get work done. Your job description needs to effectively communicate what your program manager role is about.
Writing concisely can be a tough skill to master, but it is especially significant with job postings. Choose your words wisely, and make sure they are clear and easily understandable. This article from Research Degree Insider has some good tips on how to write more concisely. For example, share about the program manager role with active verbs, such as "partner,” “develop,” or “mitigate,” and avoid passive sentences that can be clunky and grow too long.
A crucial last step to creating a great job description (or writing in general) is proofreading. Reread it and then reread it again. Have someone else proofread it, too. Get one or more people in program management and/or related areas to check it over. There is nothing worse than posting a job description with bad wording, grammatical errors, or even inaccurate information such as a salary range with one too many zeros.
If at all possible, let your program manager job description sit for a day or two. Looking at it with fresh eyes will go a long way toward making appropriate revisions. Taking the extra time to make sure your job description is 100 percent right is well worth the effort and will ensure that you attract high-quality talent.
Crafting your job description doesn’t have to be a painful endeavor. Sometimes we all just need a place to begin. Below is an outline that covers the items for a program manager job description. You’re welcome to copy the outline and fill it in according to the specific role you want to fill.
Job details: Use this section as an introduction to your job opening and the company. Leverage this area to promote the role and your organization. Do not make it too long. You will have an opportunity later to provide more company information. You should provide one or two sentences briefly describing the what and why of the program manager role. Also, give the candidate a quick snippet of why your company is great. Again, you are trying to attract the best people to this role. Give them something that will make them want the job.
What you’ll be doing: You may also title this section as “Roles” or “Responsibilities.” Create a bulleted list of the most significant tasks that the person in this job will perform. Keep the list short and each line brief and clear. Be sure to have anything unique and critical to your program manager role. You should always use active verbs, and be as specific as possible. Avoid using filler words.
Qualifications: This section is critical because it is where the applicant will quickly know whether they are a good fit for the job. The typical things to include are education, experience, certifications, and specialization requirements. Ensure you have listed all the requirements that are absolute deal-breakers. While it’s okay to list preferred qualifications, be sure to label them as such and avoid going overboard.
When referring to soft skills, use relevant personality words like “driven,“ “self-starter,” “persuasive,” and “dependable,” but avoid using too many. A program management role will have many standard requirements, but don’t waste valuable space listing generic skills. Do make sure to include special and non-standard qualifications your company may need. As with every section, keep it brief, specific, and clear.
Benefits: Your goal here is to make the program manager position as attractive as possible. Always be specific, clear, and short with your benefits list, but make sure you include all of them. You probably shouldn’t open with the benefits, but you can put them anywhere else in the job description. If your company has something unique or special about its benefits, definitely highlight those, and (if this is the case) you may want to list this early on in the job description.
About the company: This section should be at the end of your job description. As we mentioned before, this is where you need to sell your company and make the reader interested in working there. Provide some details, perhaps about the history or culture of the company, but make sure they are relevant to the role.
A program management professional is going to want to know about the company’s project management and business strategies. Include a sentence or two with a brief synopsis of how the company approaches projects and initiatives in their strategy and how the program manager role fits in.
Program managers are masters of managing schedules and groups of people to complete tasks. The program manager must be able to efficiently juggle many tasks and resources at one time.
Below are some sample roles a program management professional might fulfill as part of their job. One single program manager may not fulfill all these functions or roles, but this will give you some inspiration regarding things you can include:
High-level management and leadership
Scheduling and managing tasks
Conflict resolution and problem-solving
Cost control and budgeting
Teamwork and motivation
Organizational and multitasking