Sometimes functional leads or project managers need help managing projects. That’s where the project coordinators come in. Let’s explain the role of the project coordinator in detail.
There already is a lot about project managers and their various roles and responsibilities floating around on the web and even on our blog. We’ve also talked about program managers and other types of project management disciplines, but now we want to explore the role of project coordinator.
Different Roles in Project Management
To get an idea of where the project coordinator sits in the overall structure of the organization, let’s first map out the different project management roles. There is first the organization which has either a functional lead or a project manager. The project coordinator is the person who reports to either the functional lead or the project manager. They are the next in the chain of command and do a lot of the logistics for managing the project.
Duties of the Project Coordinator
A project coordinator will coordinate the schedule, the budget and the issues and risks of the project. It’s their job to make sure the project is well-organized and that it runs smoothly. This can include communicating with various departments in the organization to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Project coordinators need to excel in a fast-paced and challenging work environment. There is always something that needs attention, more often many things, so the ideal project coordinator must be comfortable in a stressful atmosphere.
What Are the Qualities of a Project Coordinator?
There are many qualities that define a successful project coordinator. Jennifer listed some of the more important ones.
- Detail Oriented: Attention to detail is critical when you’re overseeing so many different aspects of the project, all of which are important to its well-being and success. Be sure to highlight this aspect on your project coordinator resume.
- Dependable: The project manager is going to depend on the project coordinator to handle the minutiae of the project’s management, and therefore, it’s crucial that the project coordinator is dependable and can be relied on to uphold their responsibilities without having to be micromanaged.
- Good Communicator: Think of the project coordinator as the bridge connecting the project manager to various other project members, then you can see the importance of having superior communications skills. They need to understand the message and deliver it clearly to the target audience.
- Productive: The project demands productivity from its participants, and this is especially true for the project coordinator. Coordinators are often the grease that keeps the wheels of the project turning, so it’s doubly important that they’re productive.
- Get Things Done: The last thing a project manager wants is a project coordinator who is given a task and then doesn’t follow-through. The project coordinator has a great deal of autonomy, but if they can’t get things done, then its all for naught. The ability to get things done is probably the biggest requirement on a project coordinator job description.
All organizations should have a project coordinator who works under the project manager in order to have a smooth operation.
Project Coordinator Job Description
Project coordinators go by a few different titles, such as lead project coordinator, which is a higher-level position and construction project coordinator.
If you’re looking for a project coordinator or want to become one, here are some of the responsibilities and skills that key to getting the job done right.
Some responsibilities of a project coordinator include:
- Making sure that your team has the tools they need to execute the project.
- Creating a project schedule, with milestones, due dates and estimates for those materials that are required and other resources, such as team members, which will then be submitted to management for approval.
- Helping with the documentation of each phase of the project, as well as making summary reports that will be presented to the organization’s management team.
- Working with team members in the field or on site who have project issues.
- Keep up the morale of team members and build relationships with them to develop a strong working unit and supporting their impact on the success of a project.
As for the education background and skills that a project coordinator should have to be eligible for the position, they are as follows:
- Bachelor’s degree in business administration or a related field.
- PMP certified by the Project Management Institute and have that certification current.
- Work autonomously, making decisions without too much managerial oversight.
- Know the concepts related to the management of a project.
- Knowledge of project management tools, especially cloud-based software.
Project Coordinator Salary
Project coordinators can make a salary on average of $53,965 annually in the U.S., depending on the type of position, location and experience.
Project Coordinator Tools
Project coordinators have a lot of responsibilities that can be managed by the right tools. One of the most important is an online Gantt chart, like the one featured in ProjectManager.com. Our online Gantt chart makes responding to changes quick and easy. To change a start or end date, just drag and drop the duration bar to the new dates.
Also, if there are dependencies, they can be linked. This keeps managers and teams aware of what tasks must be completed before the next one can be started.
Project Coordinators are communicators, and ProjectManager.com is a collaborative platform that facilitates clear communication. For example, our online Gantt chart allows for teams to comment at the task level, attaching relevant documents. Project coordinators can join in on the narrative stream and offer support and guidance in real-time.One-click reporting makes a project coordinator’s job that much more productive. These reports can be filtered to address the concerns of the project manager or stakeholders. If asked for more details in a presentation, they reports are online and can be quickly accessed for a deep dive into the asked-for data.
ProjectManager.com and Project Coordinators
ProjectManager.com is a cloud-based project management software. As noted above, our one-click reporting and online Gantt chart are dynamic features that make a project coordinator work more effectively and efficiently. But there’s more. Our real-time dashboard keeps you aware of project metrics tracking progress, cost, tasks and more in colorful and clear graphs and charts. See how ProjectManager.com can help you be a more productive project coordinator by taking this free 30-day trial.
Watch a Tutorial Video on Project Coordinators
If you’d like to get a little more familiar with what a project coordinator does, then watch the following training video by Jennifer Bridges, PMP. ProjectManager.com offers a wealth of resources for all roles in project management. We have hundreds of tutorial videos and blog posts that cover all aspects of project management.
Here’s a thumbnail for your reference.
Thanks for watching!
Today, we’re talking about the role of the project coordinator. Well, we’ve been looking at the different project management roles. We’ve looked at the project manager, a program manager, portfolio manager, and today, we wanna talk about the project coordinator.
We often talk about the project manager and more and more we’re seeing job openings for the project coordinator. And then, sometimes, organizations are looking to hire a project manager, but they’re just not quite sure if they may just need a project coordinator.
So I want to look at a couple scenarios where the project coordinator reports into an organization.
Well, sometimes, the project coordinator reports directly into the functional lead. And in that case, they’re typically managing the project on their own. And then, sometimes, they report directly into a project manager, and in that case, they’re coordinating and reporting on a schedule, the budget, and any issues and risk.
So sometimes, project coordinators wanna remain a project coordinator. And then, sometimes, they’re looking to segue into that project manager role.
So, when we think of project coordinator, they’re basically responsible for keeping the project organized and running smoothly. And it’s great for someone who enjoys a fast-paced and challenging environment.
So, some of the qualities for project coordinators are, they’re very detail-oriented, they have a high attention to detail, they’re very dependable, if they say they’re going to do something, they’re going to get it done.
They’re also a good communicator so when they’re sending out email communications or any kind of communication, they really think through the details of that communication, and who it needs to go to, and the message they need to deliver.
They’re very productive and they just really get things done. As a matter of fact, for me, on my projects, I like having a project coordinator.
And for most organizations I work with, I recommend that the project manager has a project coordinator working with them so the project coordinator can focus on the details of the project, and allow the project manager to spend more time with stakeholder relationships, and be building those really strategic business relationships.
So, if you need a tool to help you as a project coordinator, then signup for our software now at ProjectManager.com.
(This post updated December 2019)