Clinical Project Managers Stuck Betwixt and Between

Why today’s project leads need to evolve their role as part of strategic contract research organizations

To keep pace with new expectations, sponsors demand that their CRO project managers (PMs) have next-level competencies. In the past, PMs followed defined processes to complete clinical activities on time and within the scope of the sponsor’s objectives. They worked according to simple management practices, adhering to the triple constraints of time, cost, and quality.

Now, PMs must add new responsibilities for risk management, governance, innovation, and return on investment (ROI). They must have the management skills to communicate and engage with larger internal teams, external vendors, and customers. In addition, PMs must be proficient in analyzing larger subsets of data to pinpoint the outliers and report results to sponsors.

Rather than putting out fires, new expectations include proactively identifying key risk indicators that can affect trial results. Taking the role of “CEO” of the project, these leaders must look at the entire project cycle to ensure objectives are aligned with sponsors’ goals, while finding new opportunities to decrease cost and speed time to market.