Junior Project Manager and Senior Project Manager

Date: 19/09/2023| Category: FAQ|

The role of Project Manager is now one of the most widespread not only in the IT sector but in many companies of all sizes and environments. However, even today there is little clarity on the differences in roles and responsibilities between Junior and Senior figures.

Junior Project Manager

Without specific references to a particular work environment, a Junior Project Manager (or simply “Project Manager”) is generally responsible for planning, organizing and directing operations related to ongoing projects in his/her team.

Know the applied methodology

In order to work within a team, the Junior Project Manager must first be aware of the working methodology applied in the management of projects by the entire work group and thus be able to “speak the same language”. This is the fundamental pre-requisite to be included effectively in a team.

Manage the team

One of the main tasks of a Project Manager is to manage the work team and coordinate its evolution. For this reason, having a common methodology can prove fundamental: the Project Manager must be able to manage the team without slowdowns or misunderstandings.

Draw up plans and reports

Project Management activity, especially if you work following a methodology, requires the drafting and constant updating of plans and reports that are extremely important for the success of a project. Following the actual implementation of all these documents is one of the tasks of the Project Manager.

Helping the Senior Project Manager

It may seem obvious, but one of the fundamental tasks of a Junior PM is to support the Senior figure in many activities: from maintaining contact with customers to solving imminent problems up to updating data and making presentations on the progress of the project.

Junior Project Manager VS Senior Project Manager

The main differences between these two roles which sanction the transition from a junior to a senior professionalism can be identified in the following points:

  • Experience
  • Leadership VS management
  • Problems VS solutions
  • Strategic vision
  • Outputs VS outcomes


It may be trivial, but the first criterion that differentiates a Junior figure from a Senior one is undoubtedly the experience and in-depth knowledge of the work tools and applied methodologies. This is without a doubt the first criterion to distinguish a Junior PM from a Senior PM.

Leadership VS management

A Junior Project Manager ensures that resources are best managed in order to successfully conclude a project while a Senior Project Manager leads his/her work team. Junior figures often tend to be too focused on the operational part, forgetting the overall vision of a project within a group or an organization, a mistake that a senior figure does not make.

Problems vs solutions

Finding a solution can also be done by trial and error, while identifying a problem requires understanding what is happening: only after dealing with many accidents, errors and delays are you able to identify problems before they occur. Knowledge, competence and lessons learned are fundamental for a senior figure.

Strategic vision

Certainly one of the skills that most distinguishes a Junior figure from a Senior one is strategic vision. A Junior PM will simply “get the job done” in the best possible way and in the shortest amount of time without knowing how to fit it into a strategic box, on the contrary, for a Senior PM, each project is nothing more than part of an overall vision in which the team and organization are inserted.

Outcome vs output

A recent trend sees Junior PMs focus more on outputs, i.e. the results produced by a project (products or services), while Senior PMs are increasingly focused on outcomes, i.e. the change introduced by the result of a project.

For further information, read also: Output, outcome, project benefits: what is the difference?

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