The program coordinator job description is one of the most complex in the industry. From organizing to communicating, planning and executing, including budgeting and other financial responsibilities, this professional has to do it all.
The aspiring candidate for the program coordinator job must possess a number of certain personal qualities and skill sets. While he must also fulfill the necessary educational requirements and some mandates related to experience also have to be met.
Job Overview: What Does a Program Coordinator Do?
The program coordinator job description usually involves a lot of billing and scheduling. Building business relationships with other groups is also a part of the job. Working primarily in the field of healthcare, in universities, or in non-profit settings, the program coordinator job description also involves a wide array of HR (human resources) and administrative tasks.
This professional’s duties include tasks from monitoring the working hours, workloads, and vacation times of staff members to tracking billing payments, and raising the necessary funds for the program. As well as making sure the project remains on track, both time-wise and money-wise. This job description is an extended one with a variety of tasks to be completed.
Program Coordinator Job Duties
Depending on the type of setting in which the job takes place, the usual responsibilities that befall anyone with the program coordinator job description change drastically. Primary responsibilities for this job vary greatly depending on the type of project the professional is handling.
- Scheduling and caring for patients.
- Mentoring the staff and organizing paperwork.
- Monitoring staff workloads and productivity.
- Communicating with administrators and other higher-ups.
- Rallying the members and raising funds.
- Spreading information about the organization and forming collaborative partnerships.
- Implementing new curriculum programs and coming up with long-term and short-term plans.
- Being the link between all members of the organization and initiating talks with other organizations.
- Managing university policies and performing outreach tasks.
- Organizing and coordinating fundraisers.
- Making sure that the goals and curricula are met.
- Recruiting faculty and students.
- Communicating and collaborating with alumni and with outside professionals: other universities, community businesses.
Program Coordinator Job Essential Skills
There is a number of personal skills and qualities everyone aspiring for the program coordinator job description should have and include in their program coordinator resume.
Leadership Skills. A great program coordinator must have excellent leadership skills in order to manage his projects and team properly. Being adaptable when working with different types of people is also important. He must have social grace and self-motivation in order to fulfill all tasks.
Organizational Skills. A well-organized program coordinator must always pay attention to details and think ahead. Being a critical thinker and being able to work under stress prove are also important for this profession.
Administrative Skills. This professional must be good with numbers and must have good office and clerical skills. Also, being a problem solver is very important.
Interpersonal Skills. It is mandatory to have active listening skills, as well as the ability to relate to the people they interact with. Excellent verbal and written communication skills are equally important for the job.
Becoming a Program Coordinator
Officially speaking, a high school diploma is the minimum amount of education which one needs in order to get the program coordinator job. However, in the current job market, most employers want more from their future employees than just to have graduated high school.
Most people working in the field, whether they have the youth program coordinator, the residency program coordinator, the education program coordinator, or the academic program coordinator job description, have to manage budgets, track schedules, and implement the programs.
Qualifications and Training
In most cases, it’s normal for the program coordinator job description to require a bachelor’s degree or at least a technical specification in a certain discipline. These disciplines usually vary depending on the type of setting the aspiring program coordinator is going for.
While it’s still optional, any candidate with one of these specialties and certifications has a far better chance of getting the job after an interview compared with a junior that has no experience in the field. However, most Universities offer related classes, which any new high-school graduate can take.
Most employers prefer their candidates to have at least some experience in the industry in which they want to get hired. So, usually a candidate with any amount of experience in an industry has a better chance of getting a job than a candidate that worked as a program coordinator before, but in a different industry.
It is not all that difficult to get experience relevant for the position. Many internships offer potential employees the possibility of getting their necessary job experience. For example, somebody can start off having some clerical duties thus gaining enough skills and experience to become a program coordinator.
Since program coordinators are the ones that are responsible for the entire team’s schedule, they can usually dictate their own working hours – to a certain degree, at least. The program coordinator work week is usually around 30 or 40 hours long. Although it can change depending on the state of each project.
The 30 or 40 hour work week can be far shorter during off season. While a particularly intense period of large workloads can even yield a 50-hour work week. There usually are no working weekends or holidays, and over time depends on how well the program is being coordinated.
Job Outlook & Advancement Opportunities
Being in the age of innovation more and more people are developing their entrepreneurship skills, therefore more program coordinators are needed to manage newly implemented projects.
In fact, the projections are so good that the rate of employment will go up 21% by 2022. And with the low levels of education required for the program coordinator job description and the ability to get experience on the job, the prospects for this job are positive for the future.
With one of the most versatile positions in management, anyone with the program coordinator job description can expect a lot of responsibilities and hard work to go into their day to day work. With a positive career outlook and great job opportunities, getting a job as a program coordinator has never been so easy and lucrative. For future promotions, this professional can aim to become a program manager or a project manager.