Salary and Market Trends Survey 2019

Project management salaries in the UK

Project management salaries have remained stable since 2017, but this could have led to a squeeze on household budgets as the cost of living increased in the past 12 months.

Since the last survey there has been an uplift of respondents at both ends of the pay scale, with 24 per cent now earning up to £35,000 and 18 per cent commanding more salaries than £70,000 per year.

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Salary calculator

Our project management salary calculator allows you to benchmark yourself against others in the profession based on your job title, work location and experience. See how you measure up.

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Average base salary of project professionals

The average salary has remained the same as last year at £47,500, comparing favourably with the UK average full-time annual salary of £29,574.

Experience is rewarded within the profession as two thirds of those who commanded a salary of at least £50,000 had more than 10 years’ project management experience.

Developing project management skills and knowledge can lead to an increased salary. Forty-six per cent of those who held a project management qualification earned more than £50,000, compared to 32 per cent of those without.

Salary by sector

The highest average salaries could be seen in the legal and telecoms sectors.

It was also the telecoms companies that experienced the highest level of employee retention, with 66 per cent of respondents saying they had been with their employer for more than five years.

Salary by region

Salary by region

Those working in the capital, along with project professionals outside the UK, remained the highest earners. A quarter of those in London and 35 per cent who work abroad earned more than £70,000 per year.

Project professionals working in the West Midlands saw the largest growth in average salaries, with an increase of nearly 12 per cent to £47,500 since the last survey.

Salary by role

Salary by role

The profession continues to offer excellent starting salaries for those in junior roles, who reported earning above £25,000. Looking at more senior roles, programme and portfolio managers exceeded an average salary of £60,000, while heads of projects/programmes earned £82,500.

Salary by age

Salary by age

Pay has remained stable across the age brackets since the last survey. The profession continued to offer attractive starting salaries, with 43 per cent of 18-to-24 year olds saying they earned between £25,000 and £34,999.

It was 25-to-34 year olds who were more optimistic about their pay and benefits package, with 77 per cent expecting an increase in the next 12 months. Job security could be important to 35-to-44 year olds, as 90 per cent of respondents in this age group had a permanent role with their employer.

Key findings:

  • On average project professionals earned £47,500

  • Forty-six per cent of project management qualification holders earned more than £50,000

  • Forty-two per cent of contractors earned more than £70,000, as opposed to 16 per cent in a permanent role

  • Half of the respondents to the survey earned between £30,000 and £54,999

Salary and Market Trends Survey 2019

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Impact of APM membership

Being a Full member of APM (MAPM) can help your earning potential, as more than three quarters reported a salary over £50,000, as opposed to 56 per cent of non-members with the same level of experience (five years or more).

Those who were members of APM were more likely to work on larger projects. The average project size across all membership grades was £10m, compared to £5m for non-members of APM.

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Impact of APM membership

What's next?

Thinking about your career development?

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Take an APM qualification

The range of qualifications developed by APM offers a progressive structure for your career development, from courses offering the ‘fundamentals’ of project management through to ‘management’ and ‘professional’ levels of understanding.

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Search the best project manager roles in your industry that match your criteria. Our job posts have full descriptions to read through, so you can find the role that is the right one for you. 

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