Project Manager

Project Management Chicago, Illinois


Description

Position Overview: The Project Manager leads the execution of deliverables for projects and programs. This individual is responsible for the creation of the project plan based on information provided by the clients and creative / strategic briefing materials. He or she owns the process inception to completion, including participation in budget determination, creation of project schedule, managing resources for deliverables, raising red flags as issues arise and ensuring adherence to the approval process.

 

Responsibilities:
Project Specific

  • Work with account management to determine the scope of the assignment.
  • Develop and maintain project schedule, internal weekly status and Program Captain statuses.
  • Assemble the project team by coordinating with Director of PM and Creative Resourcing (as needed) as well as the creative leads
  • Complete project set up activities including the intake process and documentations
  • Open jobs via the Aura system.
  • Set up folders on shared server to house all program and project documentation.
  • Communicate schedule to project / program team. Working with account to gain client buy in and approval.
  • Communicate budget implications working closely with producers.
  • Input project information into all PM documents (resourcing reports, status, etc.).
  • Schedule and lead project kick-off meeting (as it relates to schedule, job level, folder structure and location, scope of assignment, creative assets, etc.).
  • Initiate and conduct formal internal review meetings to secure creative approvals.
  • Initiate and conduct formal team status meetings, document risks and issues for internal purposes.
  • Maintain daily communication with team members on all projects; inclusive of account, production and creative.
  • Work closely with the team to determine and understand daily project status and generate daily hot-sheets.
  • Ensure that issues and risks are anticipated, identified and properly escalated and resolved. Seek final resolution on all issues so projects do not stall or fall out of scope without warning.
  • Conduct internal copy/layout reviews with core team and ensure all assets are routed internally, with specific attention to required creative and proofreading approvals.
  • Ensure adequate amount of time, whenever possible, for the routing and review of materials.
  • Identify out-of-scope activities per defined schedules and assist with contingency planning.
  • Manage change/edit requests initiated by the account team to ensure delivery and completion by full team.
  • Manage the financial tracking process for the project (create job status report, attend accounting meetings, maintain the estimate by reallocating hours as necessary, flag overages, identify delays that may affect budget, etc.)
  • Coordinate and ensure quality processes and flag opportunities for improvement to Project Management and Account Leadership.
  • Prepare for and lead an internal post-mortem team meeting and record findings.
  • Maintain documented history of job.
  • Ensure every necessary step and approval to complete the project to the agency’s standards.

Agency Specific

  • Ensure that the agency’s Project Management standards (processes, tools, milestones and approvals) are followed on all projects.
  • Provide regular status to full project team and Director of Project Management and Creative Resources on project timeline progress current resources’ progress, as well as scope, job level, and spend and its alignment with the timing.
  • Enforce processes and systems (Approvals, Project Change Orders, postmortem, etc.).
  • Motivate and guide the team as needed to encourage positive energy and generate high-quality work.
  • Win the confidence of the team, of other PMs, and of management.
  • Develop resource plans by working with department leads and larger Project Management team to ensure appropriate resources are in place throughout each project.
  • Provide industry-specific insights and subject-matter expertise, recommendations and guidance across the agency and to the client when appropriate.

KNOWLEDGE & SKILLS:
The Project Manager will:

  • Manage multiple projects, keep things moving forward and running smoothly.
  • Successfully communicate with team members.
  • Possess strong oral and written communication, analytical and interpersonal skills.
  • Possess strong negotiation skills with an assertive approach.
  • Be comfortable managing and influencing people who are not direct reports, as well as director-level personnel.
  • Have excellent multitasking and problem-solving skills.
  • Thrive in a high-volume, deadline-driven environment.
  • Give strong attention to detail.
  • Be highly adaptable and able to anticipate issues and needs before they arise and take the necessary steps to alleviate.
  • Confidently lead, motivate and influence project progress.
  • Proactively make decisions.

EDUCATION & QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred (but relevant work experience will be considered).
  • Experience assembling and managing budgets and schedules with multiple dependencies.
  • A professional presentation and strong personal presence are required.
  • Must possess outstanding interpersonal skills as well an articulate, friendly, “whatever it takes” attitude, along with a strong work ethic.
  • Must possess high energy and a solid confidence level.
  • Ability to establish and build productive relationships with diverse personalities.
  • Familiarity with graphic design tools (Photoshop, InDesign, etc.)

LEVELS:

  • 3–5 years of project management experience – preferably from a traditional advertising agency setting (for candidates outside agency only).
  • Basic to expert understanding of one or all production disciplines: print, digital, broadcast (multi-media) and live events production.
  • Experience working on broadcast production projects strongly preferred.
  • Self-motivated, proactive, quick and assertive.
  • Extremely detailed oriented and organized.
  • Exceptional time management skills.
  • Excellent writing and communication skills.
  • Cool, calm, collected and collaborative.
  • Strong sense of design and experience with industry leading creative output.
  • Proficient in MS Office applications, Adobe Acrobat Professional.
  • A working knowledge of Screen Dragon, MSProject, InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc., a plus.

 

 

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