What Does a Project Planner Do?

Apr 1 / Virgil Andrei
A project planner is responsible for planning, coordinating, and monitoring the activities for assigned projects. 

What Does a Project Planner Do?

  • Developing and implementing procedures to ensure the project team follows guidelines and adheres to company policies
  • Writing status reports, conducting cost/expense analysis, and strategizing techniques to maximize team productivity and efficiency
  • Identifying opportunities to improve project workloads and adjusting procedures as needed to meet goals
  • Using tools like Earned Value Management for cost control, forecasting, and generating reports for management
  • Determining specifications, material requirements, and initiating procurement requests
  • Coordinating with project managers, troubleshooting ERP systems, and managing budgets, cost controls, and schedules
  • Assessing risks and establishing mitigation strategies

How to Become a Project Planner

The typical path to becoming a project planner involves:
  • Earning a bachelor's degree, often in a field like engineering, construction management, or business
  • Gaining 1-2 years of relevant work experience, potentially while finishing the degree
  • Completing less than 1 month of on-site training and 6-12 months of on-the-job training

Key skills for project planners include project management, project planning, using project management software, cost control, scheduling, risk assessment, and stakeholder management.
Certifications like the Project Management Professional (PMP) can also make candidates more competitive

Career Outlook and Salary
The average project planner salary in the US is $86,926 per year or $42 per hour, with salaries ranging from $63,000 to $118,000
The project management field is expected to see continued growth, with the need for project managers and planners increasing as companies undertake more complex projects, especially in areas like construction and engineering.

Project planning is a well-defined career path with good earning potential for those with the right education, skills, and experience.
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