Opportunities and salaries continue to grow
A recent salary survey conducted by SEEK confirms that Australia is now the number one country in the world for the highest paid project management practitioners.
The average project management salary is an attractive $134,659. A quick scan of Project Managers job vacancies (in Australia) reveals the following sectors are still heavily recruiting project managers:
- IT – 5,780 job vacancies
- Construction and engineering – 2,800 job vacancies
- Oil and Gas – 780 job vacancies
Project Management salaries are commensurate with experience. Entry level Project Managers in Construction can expect a starting salary of $74,000. Salary levels can rise considerably for experienced project manager from between $200,000 to $250,000.
Management Job Trend – Skills
A growing number of management positions are now asking for project management skills. Organisations are becoming more project focused and are looking for consistent project success rates. Work is more global and complex, and skilled hands – especially those with Project Management skills – are growing in demand.
Project Management Opportunities
While looking at the opportunities in your chosen sectors, don’t limit your choices to jobs that are only available locally. Consider the growth of your sector in all states.
- Two states showing high demand for project practitioners are NT and WA
- The Northern Territory is showing up as the growth area for construction, engineering and the mining industry – as much as 2.7%, and salaries are already higher than other states to attract professionals to more remote areas.
- The resurgence in mining in Western Australia has improved wages by 3.4%.
- There are currently 851 Project Management jobs available in WA and a further 128 across a varied range of sectors in the Northern Territory.
If you are looking for higher salaries, then these states could be considered.
A 2018 study by the Project Management Institute in 37 countries and across 33,000 qualified professionals, showed:
- More than two-thirds of survey participants (70%) report that their total compensation increased over 12 months. About one-quarter (26%) reported increases of at least 5%.
- The median salary for project managers was highest in Switzerland: US$130,866.
- Across all countries, salary increases with added responsibility. The most dramatic increase is in Nigeria where the median salary increases from US$13,079 for a Project Manager I to US$20,735 for a Project Manager II and US$30,305 for a Project Manager III.
A quick look at Project manager vacancies in the United Kingdom alone shows there are currently 71,675 positions available.
India is expected to need 70 million skilled Project Managers in the next ten years if it wants to avoid delays and budget blow-outs in infrastructure, IT and Manufacturing. Indian companies are already offering some of the highest salaries for Project Managers in Asia. Qualified Australian Project Managers are already highly respected in this region.
By 2020, 15.7 million new project management roles are predicted, and the profession is expected to grow by US$6.61 trillion. In current numbers, demand will indeed outstrip supply. In 10 countries (Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Japan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom) project management roles are expected to grow by 13.4 million by 2020.
In the United States, (usually the benchmark for project management demand), this growth will mean:
- Rising salaries
- Growth in the project-intensive sectors of manufacturing, business services, finance and insurance, oil and gas, information services, construction and utilities
As many industries become project focused, the growing talent gap will drive Australian salaries in the direction of many overseas countries.
Growing Project Management Sectors
Following is a list of sectors in Australia that have the fastest growing demand for Project Managers.
Banking and Finance
Oil and Gas
Parks and Wildlife/Environmental Protection
This list is expected to keep expanding. Emerging sectors are:
- Agribusiness – owing to the growing dependence of the rural sector on Information Technology and Artificial Intelligence
- Defence – which has an increasing reliance on outsourcing many functions that were traditionally performed in-house.
The changes in business worldwide to rely more on a project-based approach, reliance on Information Technology and Artificial Intelligence, and teams working remotely – are increasing complexity in the workplace and opening the gateways for project management opportunities.
Qualified and experienced Project Managers have the skills, both personal and technical to harness the opportunities this provides now and well into the future.