Project coordinators are individuals that project managers sometimes need for their project management.
There are already many articles that explain the work of a project manager and his responsibilities in detail, but let’s take a look at this article to better understand who is the project coordinator.
First of all, to get a general idea of where the project coordinator is in the general structure of the organization, it is important to map the different roles in project management.
Project manager vs. Project coordinator
Whilst project managers and project coordinators usually work side by side, it is very important to differentiate these two roles.
The project coordinator is in charge of collecting all the necessary information for the team and the project manager and distributing it correctly.
Every information or update that the team needs should be easily accessible, thanks to the project coordinator, throughout the project lifecycle.
Meanwhile, it is the project manager’s duty to oversee the planning of the project until its completion.
Quality of the project coordinator
A project coordinator will coordinate, needless to say, the project program, budget, issues and risks.
It is his job to make sure that the project is well organized and runs smoothly and this may include communication with various departments of the organization to make sure everybody is on the same page.
Project coordinators must stand out in a hectic and challenging work environment and be prepared to be the project manager’s right-hand man.
Furthermore, project coordinators may have experience and technical knowledge in specific areas and may be assigned to specific departments according to their qualifications.
There are many qualities that define a successful project coordinator; here are the most important ones:
- Detail-oriented: attention to detail is essential when supervising many different aspects of the project, all of which are key to the successful completion of the project.
- Reliability: the project manager will answer to the project coordinator to manage the small details of the project management and, therefore, it is essential that the project coordinator is reliable and does not work against the project manager’s guidelines.
- Good communication: the project coordinator can be considered as a bridge connecting the project manager to various other project team members. Therefore, they must have above-average communication skills.
- Productivity: The project requires productivity from the team working on it and this is particularly important in the case of the project coordinator. Coordinators are like the oil that makes the wheel of the project spin perfectly.
- Self-sufficiency: The last thing a project manager needs is a project coordinator who does not follow the task assigned to them. The project coordinator must be highly self-sufficient and capable of self-organization.
Education, training and certification of a project coordinator
A formal degree in project management is generally not required.
However, most employers do seek several years of experience in their specific field and, preferably, a degree or certification in that field as well as some experience in project work.
For example, a degree in communication, management and business management, economics or other similar fields may provide the required skills.
Employers are also looking for skills in IT, Microsoft Office and, preferably, project management software.
Project coordinator responsibilities
Some project coordinator responsibilities include:
- Ensure that teams have the necessary tools to run the project.
- Create a project program, with milestones, expiry dates and estimates of required materials and resources, e.g. team members, which will be submitted to management for approval.
- Help with the documentation of each stage of the project, as well as drafting brief reports.
- Working “on field” with team members.
- Keep the morale of team members high and build relationships with them to develop a solid unit.
In conclusion, a project coordinator must not only be familiar with a hectic environment, but must also embrace it.
There are many different tasks and qualities expected from a successful project coordinator.
As stated above, coordinators perform very important tasks throughout the life cycle of a project.
We are confident that in the future, the role of the project coordinator will further develop into a highly integrated management role with the project team and will eventually become responsible for more – and increasingly important – tasks during the project lifecycle.