UK £156bn ‘hidden profession’ revealed …

Who’d be a Project Manager? Successfully delivering change, in almost any industry, is a complex balance of task management, awareness of the impact of technology, and psychology – at least. And it’s not what you’d call an easy job, nor one that often gets thanks. For most, it involves pushing people, altering priorities, being tough and resilient, and accepting that timely success and having lots of friends may be mutually exclusive.

It’s comforting therefore to see this report from the Association for Project Management, together with PwC, who have published this report on the contribution of project management to the UK industry. It’s an easily digestible 15 pages and worth a read -

Let us share some of the highlights that stood out for us, as specialists in this PM industry:

…highlights how deeply the contribution of the project profession is woven into the fabric of society”

…a profession that far out-weighs other established business services such as marketing and law” [by revenue]

…the project profession employs 1 in 12, or 8% of the UK FTE, and makes a financial contribution of £156.5 billion of annual Gross Value Added (GVA) to the UK Economy each year”

40% predicted growth in project-based activity” [over the next 3 years]




32% of those surveyed see getting access to enough people with the right PM skills and capabilities in the UK as one of their top challenges over the next three years

The report also expresses a compelling and positive story about a future anticipated growing demand for the profession flagging the possibility of a corresponding future skills gap. This last point makes clear that professional standards (such as those provided by APM) are essential — because as ‘The Golden Thread’ highlights, relying on amateurs or ‘accidental project managers’ in times of scarcity of supply of experienced project professionals is a grave mistake, and can greatly jeopardise project success.”

Having fought to find the best PMs and having been called in to numerous project recoveries, we could not agree more …