Project management can be a challenging task when you're running a business. When starting a project, there are many things to keep in mind. A team must be organized, and a thorough action plan must be made. It would be best if you also designated someone to supervise the entire operation. Project managers and coordinators are two project responsibilities that may be confusing. When it is a question of project manager vs. project coordinator, it's essential to understand the key differences between the two positions. 

Moreover, an insight into project manager vs. project coordinator responsibilities helps to choose the one that best fits your abilities, hobbies, and professional goals.

What is a Project Coordinator?

The project coordinator is the person in charge of ensuring that the project is appropriately organized and running seamlessly at all times. The primary responsibilities of the project coordinator are providing administrative or communication support to the project manager. A project coordinator is responsible for carrying out the technical duties needed to plan, manage, and complete a project. They are in charge of making sure a project runs smoothly and keeping everyone on schedule. Additionally, they work collaboratively with clients to ensure everyone is informed on the demands and goals.

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What Does a Project Coordinator Do?

Understanding the project manager vs. project coordinator role helps one choose a suitable career for oneself. The project coordinator performs the following tasks on a regular basis:

  • Monitoring the project timeline and setting goals.
  • Organizing all the resources needed to finish the project, such as the vendors, materials, and workers.
  • Evaluating the potential pitfalls and addressing them prior to their escalation.
  • Keeping team members' deliverables on track and informing stakeholders of the status
  • Coordinating team members' communications, including setting up regular team meetings and sending emails to keep everyone informed.
  • Taking charge of all project administration tasks, such as budgeting, ordering, and planning logistics.
  • Keeping track of all project documentation and materials in one place, including meeting notes, status updates, action items, and due dates.
  • Making the work schedules of the team members.
  • Creating PowerPoint presentations for the project presentations.
  • Responding to phone calls for the project manager.
  • Taking up the responsibilities of the project manager when they are not present.

Project Coordinator Job Description

The comparison of project manager vs. project coordinator gets easier when you go through the job descriptions of the two. 

The project coordinator will coordinate the project's budget, risks, challenges, and schedule. Their responsibility is to ensure that the project management framework is properly set up and works as planned. The project coordinator's role is to manage the day-to-day details of a project so that the project manager may concentrate on bigger-picture concerns and potential difficulties. Coordinators occasionally increase the scope of their duties to cover several projects or transition into project management positions with greater authority. The project coordinators also need to ensure that various divisions of the company are on the same page for a particular project.

Project Coordinator Responsibilities

The major responsibilities of a project coordinator include the following:

  • Keeping track of and maintaining project timetables, work schedules, budgets, and expenses.
  • Organizing, going to, and actively engaging in stakeholder gatherings.
  • Keeping track of significant choices and activities that were made during meetings.
  • Preparing the presentation materials that are required for meetings.
  • Ensure that project deadlines are achieved.
  • Deciding on project revisions.
  • Provide administrative support.
  • Taking up project duties as needed.
  • Proposing a good project strategy.
  • Ensuring that frameworks are followed and that every detail of a project is documented and kept up to date.
  • Analyze project risks and problems and, when necessary, propose alternatives.
  • Ensure that stakeholder opinions are managed in order to arrive at the best solution.
  • Preside over meetings, encourage them, and provide project team members with minutes.
  • Create a project planning calendar to track progress toward each goal and objective.

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Skills of Project Coordinators

The basic skills required to be a project coordinator are as follows:

  • Need good verbal, written, and presentation skills
  • Need technical skills such as data entry, Microsoft office, using software needed for projects, handling emails, etc
  • Ability to work under strict deadlines
  • Good leadership skills
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Have good commercial knowledge
  • Organization and management skills
  • Problem-solving

What is a Project Manager?

A project manager is accountable for the successful completion of a project. They ensure that teams comply with the project scope, schedules, and budget throughout the duration of the project. They are also in charge of organizing the team, making timetables, keeping in touch with everyone on the team, and monitoring progress to ensure that objectives are met. They are in charge of making sure that a project is successful and meets the standards of superiors like CEOs and accountants. Project managers are in charge of making sure a project is effectively completed and that all essential goals and requirements of the client are met. And if a project gets off track, they must get it back on track.

What Does a Project Manager Do?

The daily tasks of a project manager include:

  • Making a project timetable.
  • Creating a project budget.
  • Forming a project team and maintaining team motivation.
  • Obtaining approval from supervisors and other stakeholders.
  • Evaluating and managing the risks associated with a project.
  • Interacting with the high management of the company.
  • Reviewing project deliverables and work results.
  • Providing updates to top management (via conducting board meetings).
  • Making important decisions.
  • Managing unforeseen challenges and changes throughout the project's lifecycle
  • Establish and oversee project objectives and goals.
  • Plan, schedule, oversee, and keep an eye on the progress of the project, including how the budget was being used.
  • Make sure team members have the toolkits they need to achieve their objectives.
  • Control all project-related aspects, such as stakeholder involvement, risk management, and quality assurance.
  • Senior management should receive regular updates on the status of all your activities.

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Project Manager Job Description

Project managers usually work with numerous internal teams, external contractors, and clients as they plan, execute, and oversee the execution of every component of a project. To ensure they have a comprehensive understanding of the client's desired goals and outcomes, project managers may participate in early talks with a client and higher management. They develop plans for each stage of implementation after determining what tools, techniques, and other supplies will be required to finish the project on schedule. The project manager is ultimately in charge of the project's quality, ensuring that it is completed on schedule and to the client's satisfaction.

Project Manager Responsibilities

The project manager of a company is responsible for the following tasks:

  • Coordinating with the various inter-department members of the team to ensure that all members are on the same page concerning the project's requirements, deadlines, and schedules
  • To conduct team meetings to identify and address concerns together
  • Quality check and assurance of the project deliverables
  • Assembling, evaluating, and summarizing relevant data to create status reports
  • Establishing and ensuring the execution of efficient project communication plans
  • Facilitating change requests to make sure that everyone is aware of the effects on budget and schedule
  • Coordinating the introduction of user guides, training materials, and other papers as necessary to enable the process or system's smooth implementation and handover to the clients
  • Researching and generating new opportunities with consumers
  • Getting customer approval for project delivery
  • Keeping track of customer satisfaction during the project's transition
  • Evaluating the results of the project and identifying its good and bad components
  • ERP project management

Skills of Project Managers

The basic skills required to be a project manager include the following:

  • Having good management, leadership, and interpersonal skills.
  • ERP management.
  • Deliver quality projects.
  • Manage project teams of various dimensions.
  • Budget handling skills.
  • Time management.
  • In-depth knowledge of project management methodologies.
  • Experience in certain project management.

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UMass PCP Project ManagementExplore Course
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The Difference Between Project Coordinators and Project Managers

Explore the differences between the two to know the key points in project manager vs. project coordinator.

A project coordinator handles all of the day-to-day tasks that are required to keep a project going successfully. They coordinate the activity of other team members to ensure that everyone is working to achieve the same goals on the same timeline. Project coordinators guide other team members, but the project manager is fully responsible for the project's success. Project managers need to make recommendations to their managers. As a result, project managers hold a more senior position and may collaborate with several project coordinators.

While each position has pros and cons, project managers usually are under a lot of pressure. Project deadlines are often incredibly tight, and the workload might be enormous. It is for this reason that effective project coordinators can be so beneficial to a manager, as they may help in reducing some of this stress and pressure.

How to Move From Project Coordinator to Project Manager?

If you are currently working as a project coordinator and want to climb up the ladder and become a project manager at your company, then you need to follow certain steps to get the position:

1. Improve Your Soft Skills

Compared to project coordinators, project managers require stronger leadership, problem-solving, and communication skills. They should know how to conduct extensive research before making significant decisions, and they should be capable of convincing superiors and teammates to follow their advice and use their ideas. They ought to be self-assured, come up with original ideas for issues, and, when necessary, take risks. 

Observe the daily tasks being performed by project managers nearby and adopt their routines (especially with regard to communication and leadership). The important thing to remember is that you can't ask to be a project manager until you truly behave and think like one! Strong, soft skills must be reflected in your working style, and you must be able to communicate well at all levels.

2. Ask for Some Additional Responsibilities

You can get some additional duties from your manager and demonstrate your great work ethic and also gain relevant experience. You can coordinate team activities or projects from budgeting to execution and delivering good results. You can fill in for a certain project manager and handle their team and projects.

3. Earn Certifications in Project Management

You can add extra credit to your skill set by getting project management certifications. These certifications can give you an upper hand in getting promoted to the position of project manager. Some certifications which you can get are:

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PMP Certification Essential for Senior-Level Roles

4. Apply for Project Manager Positions at Your Company

The company where you are employed can be a great place to apply for the role of project manager. When any position opens up at an organization, they tend to hire internal people over external applicants. Make sure to apply when a job opens up at your company for your desired position.

5. Apply for Jobs at Other Companies

Instead of traditional job advertisements, networking will help you find many project management employment. Typically, before employing people, hiring managers search for competent candidates in project management groups and forums. Always be on the lookout for these chances. You might eventually get one that will allow you to demonstrate your abilities and become a well-known project manager. 

Project Manager vs. Project Coordinator: Final Verdict

Now that you know the details of project manager vs. project coordinator, you must be clear on the fact that project coordinators and project managers are both important managerial positions. Both are involved throughout the entire project life cycle. Despite the differences in their areas of responsibility, they both are responsible for the major components of every project. Project coordinators and project managers are always in demand across all industries and sectors due to the importance of project management to organizations. Getting a job in project management gets easier if you have certification in certain skills required for this job. Simplilearn offers easy and elaborate certification courses to help you get the proper skills and knowledge for your job in project management. 

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Our Project Management Courses Duration And Fees

Project Management Courses typically range from a few weeks to several months, with fees varying based on program and institution.

Program NameDurationFees
Professional Certificate Program in Project Management

Cohort Starts: 26 Jul, 2024

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PMP® Plus7 weeks$ 1,849
PMP® Renewal Pack Bundle: Earn 60 PDUs3 weeks$ 649