MS Project Interview Questions and Answers

MS Project Interview Questions and Answers

Last updated on 14th Oct 2020, Blog, Interview Question

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If you’re looking for MS Project Interview Questions for Experienced or Freshers, you are at the right place. There are a lot of opportunities from many reputed companies in the world. According to research MS Project salary ranges from $49,000 to $147,000. So, You still have the opportunity to move ahead in your career in MS Project Management. ACTE offers Advanced MS Project Interview Questions 2020 that helps you in cracking your interview & acquire dream career as MS Project Manager.

1.Provide an explanation for what’s hyperlink undertaking in MS venture used for?


Hyperlink challenge in MS undertaking for connecting any duties in a mission.

2.Point out which is “summary undertaking” in MS challenge?


The rundown task is useful in assessing the wandering period and the period in a task and arranging the wander altogether. you could discover “summary project” below the main menu -> Insert -> precise

3.list out the types of responsibilities utilized in MS challenge.


There are the foremost four kinds of obligations:

  • Precis duties: It includes subtasks and their associated houses
  • Subtasks: it is a smaller mission that is part of a precise task
  • Routine obligations: these are the tasks that fall within normal durations
  • Milestones: these are the top precedence mission which might be adjusted to 0 lengths and are like quick-term goals in the venture

4.Mention the sorts of task links in MS mission 2013?


There are four forms of task links in MS mission

  • Finish to begin link: in this link, the second venture cannot be initiated until the first task is finished.
  • Begin to begin hyperlink: in this hyperlink, the second task can start at any time after the first assignment is initiated.
  • End to complete hyperlink: in this link, the mission does no longer should stop at the same time, the second challenge can quit every time after the first venture is ended.
  • Start to finish link: on this hyperlink, the second mission can’t finish until the first task begins.

5.Explain a way to set a work time exception in undertaking 2013?


To adjust them to be hard working hours in undertaking 2013 for a particular day, you need to change the work time exception settings. for you to do that

  • Choose the task and trade the running time.
  • At the calendar pick the day you want to alternate.
  • Click the exception tab to display it, it’ll show a column with the call cell in a blank row, kinda name for the exception, and press enter.
  • Tap the exception call you entered in step three after which click on the info button. it’s going to open an element dialog box for this exception. where you’ll make the setting consistent with your requirement like running time, recurrent sample, and range of recurrence.

6.Give an explanation for how you can evaluate budget useful resource values in MS missions?


  • Go to aid utilization view ( View -> aid usage).
  • Upload finances value, work, finances paintings, and price columns to the desk if they may be not there already.
  • Faucet on the drop-down arrow to the proper of the resource call column heading and then pick out “institution with the aid of” -> custom organization, in order to group the aid by custom resource check field.
  • Tap on the down arrow in the field call cellular in the organization through the row section, after that within the drop-down list of resource fields, pick out the name of the custom textual content subject to your budget categories and then click observe.
  • Now inside the group precise rows, examine the budget get price or budget paintings values to the cost or work values concurrently.
  • To dismantle the organization, you could select NO groups by clicking the down arrow to the proper of the useful resource call column heading.

7.What are your favorite MS task books/internet sites?


Mission making plans, estimating, tracking, and conversation is possibly the most complex, nuanced region that Microsoft’s circle of relatives of workplace-related applications hopes to aid. experienced, professional PMs have to be actively looking to enlarge their ability sets with a ramification of sources.

8.Have you ever completed any VBA automation with MS Project?


This isn’t as commonplace as Excel programming, however, it’d deliver some perception into their depth of expertise of the assignment “database”. a few oldsters automate look/feel troubles, so printouts always appear the same (consistency breeds familiarity). different uses macros for mainly intricate utilization or cost calculations. The candidate ought to be able to glibly describe the benefits and challenges of automation with this tool.

9.How do you add or delete a standard or custom column/field?


A bit of a trick question: there are many ways to add (or insert) a column/field, typically they will brute force Insert or use a macro. You should never delete a column/field that contains data; the recommended approach is to hide the column. An interviewer could drill into the candidate’s use of custom tables, views, fields, and filters. Have they set up templates? How do they manage consistency among multiple projects? Do they use automation or templates to develop standards and make incremental improvements for each project they work on?

10.How do you model meetings and non-working time on a project plan?


There are a number of different methods – including …

  • Model all resource participation at 80% available time
  • Change the default calendar to 6-hour workdays
  • Create weekly, 5-day (duration) tasks, for 1-4 (effort) hours per week, and assign everybody to this task

11.Can MS Project be used to track an agile development project, and if so, how?


There is no right answer to this question, I’ve heard opinions on both sides. However, if someone can give a cogent, detailed answer, either way, they are demonstrating their knowledge of agile and/or Project.

Cross-company management, matrix management A project manager has to liaise with other departments in the company, like the procurement, the R&D, as well as the Logistics department. Other than that, the project manager may also have to interact with customers and the company’s partners. Sometimes, the project manager may also be responsible for the invoicing and financial issues of his projects. Do you have that project management experience?

12.Tell me about a time when your stakeholders didn’t agree on a project. How did you proceed?


Interviewers asking this question are looking for stories that will prove you have these necessary soft skills for the job. Make sure to brainstorm stories about your former project management roles in anticipation of this question and use them as a confirmation that you have the mediation skills that these hiring managers are looking for.

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13.What projects do you not want to work on?


Everyone wants to believe they can handle every project, but the reality is that most project managers are best suited for a narrow project management role.

If you tell your future employer that you love working on everything, that communicates that:

    1. 1.You might not know what you’re talking about OR
    2. 2.You’re unwilling to communicate weaknesses.

Neither of these traits reflects well on you.

Instead, be honest. Are you more of a software development person? Do you do well with creative media campaigns? Would you rather lie down and die than work on a construction project? Let your interviewer know; both they and your future self will thank you for it.

14.How do you deal with difficult team members?


Project management flows a lot smoother when everyone is meeting deadlines with quality results. Unfortunately, you’re likely to work with some individuals who have trouble delivering. Your interviewer wants to know how you deal with these interpersonal and personnel issues.

First, look up proper approaches to dealing with difficult team members so that you’re ready to respond with the best possible answers. Provide examples of how you helped improve the work processes of team members at your previous jobs. You can always ask your interviewer to give a “for instance”; they might also have someone specific in mind.

15.Why would you embed contractor time within a Project plan? How do you do it, and where do you get the quickest information relative to contractor costs?


There are multiple reasons for contractor time, the most obvious would be the need to account for all tasks and dependencies. The candidate should also come up with a rationale around capturing cost – they need to demonstrate a focus on schedule and budget. It’s also interesting to see where in the project proposal process they bring in high-level Project plans, with resource-loaded tasks and timelines, to develop initial estimates for the inevitable cost/benefit conversations.Specifically, to get this done, you need to add contractor cost per hour on the Resource Sheet. Costs could be a blended rate (for High / Medium / Low skilled tasks) or specific rates for known resources. The candidate should be able to speak intelligently on how and why to create a blended rate – averaging hourly costs for full-time employees and contractors, the total project budget (when approved) gives you the flexibility (ie. the budget) to bring in external contractors when internal resources are occupied with other work.

16.How do you best embed resource availability within your plan?


Use a Standard calendar, noting non-working time for all resources. Then, embed out-of-office for specific individuals as needed. If you skip this step, you risk creating an inaccurate schedule, by hampering Project’s ability to extrapolate accurate future dates.You can sneak into a soft skills conversation here, by talking about the requisite negotiations for resource time within the business 

17.How would you best configure the critical path to be very obvious within your plan?


Format – Text Style – Item to Change; Select Critical Path and adjust color to Red or something else equally eye catching. Extra points awarded if the candidate is sensitive to the typical lack of color printers in many organizations – how does your Red come out now, hmmm?Here’s another opportunity to move into a soft skills conversation, with war stories about significant critical path moments in past projects, or discussing how to explain critical path to the project team.

18.Explain how Earned Value fields are used to compute Schedule Variance – and why this is important.


Schedule Variance (SV) = Budgeted Cost of Work Performed (BCWP) – Scheduled (BCWS)Cost Variance (CV) = Budgeted (BCWP) – Actual (ACWP) Cost of Work Performed
Project Earned Value is a simple concept (are we ahead of schedule? Budget?), but most folks don’t use it. It’s an indicator of how good the candidate is at tracking an active project (as opposed to just using MS Project as an estimator / high-level planner).

19.What are your favorite MS Project books / websites?


Project planning, estimating, tracking, and communication are possibly the most complex, nuanced area that Microsoft’s family of Office-related applications hopes to support. Experienced, professional PMs should be actively looking to expand their skill sets with a variety of resources.

20.List out the categories of tasks used in MS projects?


    1. 1.Summary tasks: It consists of subtasks and their related properties
    2. 2.Subtasks: It is a smaller task that are part of a summary task
    3. 3.Recurring tasks: These are the tasks that falls at regular intervals
    4. 4.Milestones: These are the prime priority task that are adjusted to zero duration and are like short-term goals in the project

21.What are the characteristics of Gantt Chart Basics?


    1. 1.In Gantt chart, each task is displayed by one row
    2. 2.Dates are displayed in incremental order like days, weeks or months as per the total length of the project
    3. 3.For each task expected, time is displayed by a horizontal bar whose left end indicates the estimated beginning of the task and right end indicates the estimated completion date
    4. 4.Task may run parallel, sequentially or overlapping
    5. 5.The chart is represented in the bar formation to a length proportional to the fraction of the work that has been completed
    6. 6.On the left of the line, you will see the completed tasks
    7. 7.Future tasks line lies to the right of the line
    8. 8.Current task are cross the line and are behind schedule when filled in section is on the left of the line and ahead of schedule when it is right of the line

22.Explain what is resource levelling?


Resource levelling is the coolest feature given by MS project; these tool schedules work without over allocating work to the employees, especially for those who are indulged in multi-task activities. For example, there is a project A and B and allotted time for this project is 3 and 2 days. When an individual uses resource levelling, it schedules the work as first 2 days for project A and later two days for project B and again on the last day it will return to project A.

23.Explain how you can create and code a WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) in MS project?


    1. 1.Inserting Tasks: If you forgot to insert task in the list you can add by clicking the place where you want to add a task and go to “Insert>New” task or press “insert.”
    2. 2.Outlining Structure: You will be creating an outline of the project by assigning the project name. In respect to do that you have to select all deliverables underneath the heading and then click the Indent button. They will all line up, and the deliverable will appear in bold
    3. 3.Assign numerical code to tasks: Once you have created a work breakdown, you can assign a numerical code to it. In respect to do that go to “tools” in the task bar. Under “options”, you will see “outline options”, under this you have to click on check box with the option “show outline number”. You will see that the task list will have a numerical code in front of it.

24.How does MS Project determine a task is on the critical path?


If total slack is <= 0 it’s on the critical path. Depending on the version this can be configured.

25.What is the critical path?


It’s the longest path of tasks to either a deadline or the last task in the project.

26.Explain what a link task in MS project used for?


As the name suggests, link task in MS project is used for linking any two tasks in a project.

27.Mention what are the new features available in MS project 2013?


  • Improved reporting tools: MS project 2013 offers advanced reporting tools and easy accountability for organizations
  • Office 365 Integration: Easy integration of office 365 to the MS project data
  • New Project Templates: The new MS project provides project templates that can be compliant to your requirement like marketing, construction, business, software development plan, etc.
  • Better Presentation Tools: The timeline view gives better view of the progress of your project and helps to schedule your project accordingly
  • Task Path: This feature can be handy for a project manager handling large and complex schedules. It allows the user to see the path for a specific task including Successors, Driven successors, Predecessors and Driving Predecessors.

28.Explain what is a constraint in MS projects? What are the types of constraints available in MS project 2013?


In MS project, constraint is used for scheduling the task and setting a due date for the task.  The types of constraint available in MS project are

  • As soon as possible
  • As late as possible
  • Must start on
  • Must finish on
  • Finish no later than
  • Start no later than
  • Start no earlier than
  • Finish no earlier than

29.Mention how to set a deadline in MS project?


To set a deadline in MS project

  • Double-click a task -> it will open a task information dialog box
  • Now, click on the advanced tab
  • Then click on the arrow in the deadline field to show the calendar and then choose a date
  • Now save this by clicking on the save button

30.Explain how you can move tasks in project 2013?


You can move tasks in MS project 2013 by two techniques

    1. 1.Move the task with drag and drop method
    2. 2.Move the task with the cut and paste method

31.Explain how you can remove resources from your project?


To remove the resource from your project, first filter the task list to view only the tasks to which the resource is allocated, and then you can edit or change each task to replace that resource.

  • Choose a task-oriented view like Gantt chart and hide the summary tasks, this list will show only work tasks and milestones
  • Under View tab’s data section, click on the filter drop-down list and then select “Using Resource.”
  • In the “show tasks using” drop-down list, select the resource and delete it that you don’t want and then click ok
  • To replace the resource, select “Assign Resources” under the resource tab’s assignment section. Select the task from the table you want to re-assign, and then, in the Assign resource dialog box, choose the resource you want to replace and click replace
  • Click the format tab, and turn the checkbox back on for “Show Summary Tasks.”
  • Click resource sheet in the view tab’s resource view section and now you can delete the resource

32.Explain what is the use of work contour in MS projects? What are the different types of contours you use in MS projects?


In MS project work, contour displays the distribution of working hours over the duration of the task.  The graph will show the peak according to the work distribution over the week.

  • Flat: Such contour signifies an even distribution of work
  • Back-loaded: It will show the peak activity at the end of the project
  • Front-loaded: It will show the peak working activity at the opening of the project
  • Double peak: It will show two major periods of peak activity
  • Early peak: It is same as the front loaded but with the rise to peak activity
  • Late peak: It is same as a back loaded contour with a ramp
  • Bell: It shows a single peak in the central of the project
  • Turtle: A bell with a ramp up and down

33.Explain how you can format a Gantt chart on MS project?


To format a Gantt chart on MS project

  • First you have to click on Format icon from main menu bar
  • Click customize quick access toolbar, which is last on the corner above menu bar
  • -> click on more components ->  select on, comments not in pattern
  • -> click on Gantt Chart Wizard and then click add and ok
  • Once Gantt chart wizard is set up, it will open a window that displays various settings like standard, critical path, baseline and other for your Gantt chart. You can select option according to requirement and click next
  • Likewise, you can also set information like resources and dates, resources or dates alone
  • Once you exit wizard, basic formatting like color, font size and appearance can be changed from the main menu ( FORMAT) itself

34.Explain how you can link tasks in MS project 2013?


You can link or connect any two tasks in a project to manifest their relationship, also referred to as dependency. Dependency drives  the project schedule and once you change the tasks, every change you make to one alters the task of another, which affects the next and so on.  To link the task, you have to

  • Click View -> Gantt Chart
  • Hold down Ctrl and click the two tasks you want to link
  • Click on Task -> Linked the selected tasks

35.Mention the types of task links in MS project 2013?


There are four types of task links in MS project

    1. 1.Finish to start link: In this link the second task cannot be initiated until the first task is completed
    2. 2.Start to start link: In this link, the second task can begin at any time after first task is initiated
    3. 3.Finish to finish link: In this link, two task does not have to end at the same time, the second task can end anytime after first task is ended
    4. 4.Start to finish link: In this link, the second task can’t finish until the first task begins.
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36.What should you be aware of before importing excel files to MS projects?


Before you import excel file, you should be aware of following things

  • Make sure which excel file fields will be mapped to which MS project
  • Not necessary that all fields in the excel should be imported to MS project, you have the opportunity to choose the field you wanted to import
  • Make sure that your import file has a column header
  • Blank fields in the excel will be imported as a blank field the project
  • Start and finish date in excel will be imported in the MS project start and finish field as start no earlier than constraints for the tasks
  • If the map has to be imported then, it should be in Global.mpt file format on your machine, if it is not in that format then the import wizard will nod show the map as a selection choice.

37.Explain the path for importing excel into the MS project 2013?


Path for importing the file into MS project:

At the end of the run wizard, it will ask how you want to import the file

  • As a new project
  • Append the data to the active project
  • Merge the data into the active project

After selecting any of the above options, you can click next to finish importing excel file to MS   project.

38.Explain how you can compare budget resource values in MS projects?


  • Go to Resource Usage view ( View -> Resource Usage)
  • Add budget cost, Work, budget work and Cost columns to the table if they are not there already
  • Tap on the drop down arrow to the right of the Resource Name column heading and then choose “Group by” -> Custom group,  in order to group the resource by custom resource test field
  • Tap on the down arrow in the Field Name cell in the Group By row section, after that in the drop down list of resource fields, select the name of the custom text field for your budget categories and then click apply
  • Now in the group summary rows, compare the budget get cost or budget work values to the cost or work values simultaneously
  • To dismantle the group, you can choose NO groups by clicking down arrow to the right of the Resource Name column heading

39.Explain what are the settings you have to insert while entering Project Information into Project 2013?


To enter project information into project 2013, it includes information like

  • Start and Finish Date: For a project that is scheduled forward from the start date, enter only the start date, while enter the finish date if you like to schedule backward from finish date
  • Schedule From: You can select the finish date or start date whichever way you want to schedule your task
  • Current Date: By default this setting matches the computer clock settings; however it can be configured according to your requirement
  • Status Date: To track the progress on the project you can the current date status. This will show the status of the project as of the current moment
  • Calendar: From this drop-down list you can choose the base calendar template to use for the project calendar
  • Priority: By using this field you can prioritize your work and decide which work has to be delayed and which has to be done immediately

40.Explain how to set a work time exception in Project 2013?


To alter the available working hours in Project 2013 for a particular day, you have to change the work time exception settings. In order to do that

  • Start and Finish Date: For a project that is
  • Select the project and change the working time
  • On the calendar choose the day you want to change
  • Click the exception tab to display it, it will show a column with the name cell in a blank row, type a name for the exception and press enter
  • Tap the exception name you entered in step 3 and then click the details button. It will open a detail dialog box for this exception. Where you will make the setting according to your requirement like working time, recurrent pattern and range of recurrence.

41.What, according to you, is an important skill for a project manager to succeed?


Well, if you are a project manager you might already be thinking that there can’t be one skill that is enough to be successful. And, you are right. Your answer could be leadership skills, communication skills, or time management skills. What the interviewer is looking for is the justification for the answer.  So, before you blurt out anything, have your reasons ready.

42.How do you begin a newly assigned project?


Through this question, the interviewer is essentially trying to check your clarity of thought. He/she wants you to describe the important first steps you need to take to ensure the success of a project. A good manager would try to understand the ‘what’ of the project before ‘how’. What it means is you first try to understand what is the objective or purpose of the project before diving into how to achieve the goals of the project. Hence, anything on the above lines would get you some brownie points. 

43.Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?


This is a top project manager interview question. The answer shows whether you have realistic expectations from the job you are applying for. It helps the interviewer check if your personal goals align with that of the company. 

If you are applying for an entry-level position, it might be too ambitious to say ‘I want to be the CEO of this company’. It helps to research the employee growth in the company and estimate where you could reach with your best performance in the next 5 years. On the other hand, if you are applying for a senior position, you can talk about how you wish to take the company forward and what your contribution towards that would be.

44.How important is it for a project manager to be ‘proactive’?


By very nature, projects are unpredictable. Hence, it is essential that a manager anticipates problems that can occur and plans ahead. Your answer then has to reflect the importance you attach to proactive project management. Show the interviewer that you can handle risks and rise to the challenges that can occur during the course of the project.

45.What are the knowledge areas relevant to doing a project?


This is a kind of question for which you need to have the answer ready. PMBOK guide describes 10 knowledge areas. Read about them in detail and try to paraphrase in your own words. 

46.Describe all the steps involved from the time of project initiation to project completion.


The best answer for this question would be scenario-based. Sometimes, the interviewers themselves give a hypothetical project and ask you how you would handle it. 

For each stage phase the project follows, briefly mention the following:

The main objective of that phase

The key people involved

Your role in each of those phases

47.What qualities are required to be an effective project manager?


This question is different from the one in which you are asked to name only one skill. Apart from technical skills, mention leadership skills, time management skills, decision-making skills, prioritization skills, risk management skills etc. The follow-up question can be about how a certain skill helps. So, do prepare a justification for each of the skills you talked about.

48.Did your colleagues or your manager ever challenge your decisions?


Many people think that it’s better to say ‘no’ to this question and move on to the next. But, disagreements in projects are quite common. So, it is extremely unlikely nobody disagreed with your decisions (Especially, if you are a senior project manager). So, it’s better to say yes and go on to describe how you handled the situation. Show that you are a person who can take feedback constructively and can take everybody along with you in a collaborative manner.

49.How do you ensure your team stays on track to meet project deadlines?


A sample answer can be ‘I clearly communicate what the expectations are before the team starts to work on the task. I regularly take updates on the progress and if there is a lag anywhere I make myself approachable for the team members to discuss their problems. Also, I appreciate and give feedback once the project is completed to keep them motivated’

50.Do you know anything about Pareto principle/analysis?


This is again a knowledge-based question. The Pareto principle states that 80% of the results come from 20% of the actions. This is a statistical analysis that is used by project managers to prioritize work. If you have enough experience as a project manager, most likely you have used this principle or at least a variation of it.  Apart from explaining what it is, talk about how you used it in your previous job (if you did)

51.Do you think integrity is an essential quality of a project manager?


Of course, you have to say ‘yes’. Go on to describe why it is so. Any company wants an employee who shares the values and principles of the company. If you are in a responsible position such as a project manager, you are expected to show the way for others to follow. Earning the respect of your team members and the trust of your bosses can only happen when you are ethically upright. 

52.If the customer is not happy with the result and does not accept the product. What would you as a project manager do?


Keeping customers happy is important for the companies. Hence, your answer should showcase that you value customers as well. You can start by explaining that during the course of the project you regularly interact with the customers so that they are on the same page as the project team. Despite this, if the customers are unhappy with the result, say that you will try to clearly understand what modifications they want and try to incorporate them. In case the changes cannot be made, you will try to convince and explain to the customer that the project fits in with the agreed scope. 

53.How should a project manager communicate a failure to his team?


A good project manager is optimistic. The way you handle failure reflects the true leader in you. If your team worked on a project and it ultimately failed, they are bound to be unhappy. But as a manager, it is your duty to ensure that failures don’t affect the morale of the team. You can tell the interviewer that instead of blaming a particular person or a group, you make it a collective responsibility. Also, mention that you communicate to the team members to learn from the mistakes they made in this project and not repeat them in the future.

54.What is the difference between Project, Program, and Portfolio?


An endeavor undertaken to produce a unique product or solutionA group of interrelated projects that are managed togetherA collection of projects and operations managed under one group to achieve a strategic goal
Temporary in nature with defined start and end pointTemporary in nature but lasts longer than projectPermanent in nature that keeps on changing and is aligned with the strategic planning
Follows the project-level plans with the main focus on detailed deliveryFollows the high-level plans that are backed up by detailed plansFollows the ongoing processes that prioritize and align the portfolio to achieve strategic objectives
Has a narrow and defined scope with no changesHas a wide scope can change with time-based on client requirementsHas the widest scope with the strategic perspective of the whole organization

55.What is your understanding of Project Management?



6 P’s of Project management – Project Manager Interview QuestionsProject management is the discipline that helps in implementing various processes, methods, knowledge, skills, and experience for achieving the objectives of a unique project. Project management is nothing like the usual management. One key factor which differentiates these two is that project management has a final deliverable and a definite timeline whereas management is an ongoing process. A project manager must always follow the 6P rule of project management which is Proper Planning Prevents Poor Project Performance.

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56.Elaborate on the Project Management Life Cycle process?



The Project Management Life Cycle is a series of various activities/tasks that are crucial for accomplishing project objectives or targets. This helps in structuring the efforts and simplifying them into a series of logical and manageable steps. The Project Management Life Cycle consists of four simple phases which are listed below:

    1. 1.Initiation- It’s the first and most vital step in the life-cycle of your project where the initial scope of the project gets defined and resources are committed. This process group ensures the success of your project.
    2. 2.Planning- In this process group, an appropriate level of detail is jotted for the project to plan time, cost and resources. It estimates the work needed and manages risk effectively.
    3. 3.Executing- This process group consists of the processes which are used to complete the work defined in the project management plan. It’s about achieving the project’s objectives. It also involves tracking, reviewing and regulating the performance of the project. Also, you need to identify potential problems quickly and take corrective actions.
    4. 4.Closure- This process group is an important part of project management, performed to finalize all project activities to complete the project. This means finishing all activities across all the process groups, disbanding the project team and signing off the project with the customer using the project closure report.

57.What are the most important skills that a Project Manager should possess?


Most important skills that a Project manager must possess are:

    1. 1.Communication
    2. 2.Leadership
    3. 3.Team Management
    4. 4.Negotiation Power
    5. 5.Personal Organization
    6. 6.Risk Management

58.How will you start your job as a new project manager?


When you start your job a project manager first few things that you need to take care of are:

  • Listen, observe and learn
  • Understand your client’s needs and wants
  • Know your team and their personalities
  • Take the opportunity to learn some new skills
  • Help out around the workplace
  • Try to master the tools your company possesses

59.How will prioritize tasks in your project?


Prioritizing tasks in a project is very important and especially if it is an extensive one. It helps in ensuring successful and timely completion of your project. In order to prioritize the tasks you should follow the below pointers

    1. 1.List the tasks and responsibilities
    2. 2.Distinguish between urgent and important
    3. 3.Assess the value of each task
    4. 4.Order the tasks by estimated efforts
    5. 5.Stay flexible and ready to adapt
    6. 6.Know when to say NO

60.What is your leadership style?


Leadership is a quality that every project manager must possess. Every leader has his own leadership style to guide his team. The leadership style refers to a leader’s characteristic behavior while directing, motivating, guiding, and managing his team to bring the best out of them. In a project, they hold the responsibility to motivate others for better performance, creation, and innovation.


There are basically four types of leadership styles and your leadership style should be situational, depending on the type of team you are working with and the importance of the tasks involved in the project. Below are the four leadership styles:

    1. 1.Delegate
    2. 2.Supportive
    3. 3.Directing
    4. 4.Coaching

61.What is your ideal project?


Before you decide on your ideal project, you must consider the following questions. These questions will help you in narrowing down your choices while making sure that your productivity maximizes.

  • What type of work do you enjoy the most?
  • How much do you want to and are allowed to show your creativity?
  • Under what type of deadlines do you work best?
  • How comfortable are you with trying new things on a project?
  • Do you prefer to always receive full credit for your work?
  • Are you okay with working as part of a team, or do you prefer to work alone?

62.What are the processes and process groups in the project management framework?


A process in the project management framework is a defined way of doing tasks that are involved in the successful completion of a project. These processes define the actions to be taken along with their sequence. There are around 49 processes in the project management framework embedded in various process groups. Process groups are a collection of processes that are applicable through various stages of a project.



63.What are the knowledge areas and how relevant are they in a project?


Knowledge Areas are the core technical subject matter that are vital for effective project management. All the 49 processes are primarily part of these knowledge areas where they are grouped based on their commonalities. Below I have listed down the 10 knowledge areas of project management framework:

  • Project Integration Management
  • Project Scope Management
  • Project Schedule Management
  • Project Cost Management
  • Project Quality Management
  • Project Resource Management
  • Project Communications Management
  • Project Risk Management
  • Project Procurement Management
  • Project Stakeholder Management

64.How would you handle a difficult stakeholder involved in your project?


Since stakeholders hold a high authority and are an integral part of a project having their consent is very important. But sometimes they can be little difficult to handle, in such cases should:

  • Accept their authority without fighting
  • Remove all the negative emotions
  • Understand their issue
  • Ask for advice and listen to them
  • Be tactful and honest with your decisions
  • Praise them and try to establish the connection
  • Improve your communication

65.What is RAID in Project Management?


RAID in project management stands for Risk, Assumptions, Issue, and Dependencies. These are very important items that a project manager must have knowledge about.

  • Risks are the potential problems that can have either a positive or negative impact on the project resulting in a deviation of the final result from the original plan.
  • Actions are the task that you perform throughout the project.
  • Issues are the hurdles that you might face in the course of the project which must be successfully resolved or it might derail the project or cause the project to fail.
  • Decisions are your choice of actions/tasks in the project.

66.When you consider that your project is off track and what will be your steps to ensure that it finishes within the given timeline?


To detect whether your project is on track or falling behind the agreed timeline, you must check the below pointers:

  • Budget is under control or not
  • Is it consuming too much time
  • Does the project scope keeps changing
  • Original goals are still present or not

If the answers to these pointers are true then, your project is definitely off the track and you must take immediate action to bring it back on track. Few steps that you might take are:

  • Discover the root cause
  • Put in more time and efforts to catch up
  • Try to follow the original goal or vision
  • Re-adjust resource management (resource, finance, human etc.)
  • Keep open communication with client and stakeholders

67.Which project management methodology do you prefer following in your projects?


Not a single methodology can be applied to all types of projects. The selection of project management methodology must be based on the following criteria:

  • Strategic goals and core values of your organization
  • Key business drivers of your project
  • Constraints (if any) in the project
  • Stakeholders involved in the project
  • Risks that might occur
  • Level of complexity of the project
  • Estimated size and cost of the project

68.What are the tools mostly used for improving the process activities?


Majorly used tools in the industry:

  • Comparing and Baselining a Process
  • Flow-charting
  • Value-Stream Mapping
  • Cause and Effect Analysis
  • Hypothesis Testing

69.How will you manage the team members who are not working to their full potential?


To bring the best out of your team members, you must:

  • Try to avoid any type of emotional confrontation with the team and stakeholders
  • Encourage them to think and act in their own ways
  • Help your team members in developing their decision-making abilities
  • Develop their performance tolerance threshold
  • Strengthen the potential of weak employees by surrounding them with those even stronger
  • Understand what motivates your employees
  • Show your employees where they fit in the company mission and vision
  • Arrange a proper follow-up process
  • Reward and appreciate their improvement to encourage them more
  • Be ready to let them go if there is no scope of improvement

70.Being a project manager how will you gain your team agreement for results?


Trust and agreement is a key factor that facilitates proper communication and coordination in a team. that brings out the best outcome. To gain agreement from your team members you must:

  • Keep your expectations clear from the very beginning
  • Build achievable milestones so that they don’t feel pressured
  • Collaborate and maintain team trust throughout the project
  • Agree on the terms with the team & ask for their opinions as well
  • Schedule frequent accountability meetings
  • Establish outcome results and consequences
  • Clear out any conflicts among the team members as soon as it arises

71.Explain Ishikawa/ Fishbone diagrams?


A fishbone diagram is also known as a cause and effect diagram or Ishikawa diagram. It is a visualization tool that is used for categorizing the potential causes of a problem in order to identify its root causes. A Japanese quality control expert named Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa invented this fishbone diagram in order to help employees to avoid solutions that will merely address the symptoms of a much larger problem.


72.Explain the entire team forming process you follow for your team.


Developmental stages of the team generally consist of:

  • Forming: In this stage, the entire group unites for the first time where the focus is to build relationships within the team and clarify the mission or vision of the project.
  • Storming: In this stage, team members get more comfortable in sharing their opinions with the team and with a possibility of internal conflict within the group.
  • Norming: In this stage, the project team receives the clarity and support on the tasks to proceed with the project.
  • Performing: By this stage, the team members learn to trust and accept each other. Each of the team members become competent, autonomous and is able to handle the decision-making process without anyone’s supervision.
  • Adjourning: This is the final stage of the team forming process, which takes place after project completion. In this stage, the team is broken up and resources are released.

73.What is the process of calculating the three-point estimating method?


There are two ways in which you can calculate the three-point estimation:

  • Triangular Distribution E = (P+M+O)/3
  • Beta or PERT Distribution
    E = (P+4M+O)/6

where P = pessimist, O = Optimist, M = most likely.

74.Explain the Work Breakdown Structure (WBD) and its effect on the work estimates of tasks/activities?


Work breakdown structure defines the work activities that are required for the project completion and the sub-activities of each of those work requirements. It has a hierarchical structure in which concrete/ main activities are segregated into logical sub-activities. There are two approaches:

    1. 1.Top-down approach
    2. 2.Bottom-up approach

75.Differentiate between risk and issues.


Issues are more of present focusedRisks are more of future focussed
These always tend to be negative in natureThey can be either, positive or negative
Issues are generally documented in “Issue Register”Risks are generally documented in “Risk Register”
The response to an issue will be “Issue workaround”The response to risk is based on “risk response planning”
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76.Why does a Project Manager need to be proactive?


Proactive Managers have higher chances of finding out the risks and implementing solutions in order to minimize them. Being proactive lets them have more control over their project tasks and resources. They can keep a better track of all tasks and issues to work towards implementing small changes and improvements for higher productivity and efficiency. Organizes frequent meetings for developers to talk about their problems, brainstorm solutions, share best practices etc. Compares the actual costs and time spent on tasks on a weekly basis with the planned numbers.

77.What is the difference between Risk Impact and Risk Probability?


Risk Probability is the chance that a risk will occur whereas Risk Impact is the cost when a risk does occur.


78.Which communication style do you prefer using in your projects?


Type of communication you use in your project will completely depend on the type of project you are working on and the type of team you have. Types of communication styles that a project manager uses:

    1. 1.Written
    2. 2.Electronic
    3. 3.Face-to-Face
    4. 4.Responsive

79.What do you understand by time & material contract?


It is a type of contract that is a hybrid contractual arrangement containing aspects of both cost-reimbursable and fixed-price contracts. Time and material contracts resemble the cost-reimbursable type arrangements where they have no definitive end. This contract is generally used in projects whose accurate project size can’t be estimated or when it is expected that the project requirements would most likely change.

80.What will you do if any of the customers are not happy with the quality or results of the product by the end of the project?


To handle an unhappy customer, you must:

  • Show the customers that you value them
  • Understand why they are not happy
  • Figure out what modifications they want
  • Try to incorporate the modifications if possible
  • If not possible try to convince and explain to the customer that the project fits in with the agreed scope

81.Explain the triple constraint triangle in project management.



Triple Constraint Triangle is a combination of three key components which acts as the most significant restrictions on any project. Following are the three constraints in this model:

    1. 1.Time
    2. 2.Cost
    3. 3.Scope

Each of the constraints forms the vertices of the triangle with quality as the central factor.

82.What are the major types of risks you might encounter in a project?


Majorly encountered risks in a project are:

  • Cost Risk
  • Schedule Risk
  • Performance Risk
  • Resource Risk
  • Technology Risk
  • Market Risk
  • Legal Risk
  • Strategic Risk
  • Governance Risk
  • Operational Risk
  • External Risk

83.What was the biggest challenge that you faced while working on a project?


‘I didn’t have the right team’. ‘I don’t deal well with changes’. ‘My boss wasn’t very supportive’. These would be bad answers to give your future employer. As a project manager, you are expected to manage people and handle risks. So, don’t tell your interviewer that you fall short in those two areas. Give an example of a situation in which the challenge was due to the external factors. It can be about when the project was abruptly shelved or when the funding for it has been stopped. Don’t forget to mention how you handled the situation and what you learned from it. 

84.What kinds of projects interest you the most? Why?


The one word that you need to focus on for this pm interview question is ‘relevance’. Do your research about the company and the role you are applying for. Your answer for this should be about the kind of projects that the company can offer.

85.What are different kinds of project management tools you worked with?


When the interviewer asks this question, it is to know whether you can use Lean, Kanban, Agile etc. If the company uses particular project management software, read up on it. Further, do mention how your knowledge of a specific project management tool can help their company. 

86.What kind of people do you find difficult to work with?


This is a potential trap. ‘I get along with everyone’. Say this and you will open a floodgate of questions. Focus on why you are being asked this question. They want to check your people management skills. You can talk about how you are strictly professional and do not let your emotions get the better of you while working with people. Bring out your maturity, emotional quotient while answering this question.

87.Are there any projects that you do not want to work on?


If you say you are fine with any project, it might imply that you do not know yourself enough to answer this question. Instead, it is better to be honest and communicate your preferences. But, if you are applying for a software project manager position and say you hate software development, slight chance you will get the job. So, be a little smart. 

88.How do you keep your team members motivated?


One of the important roles of a leader is to keep the morale of the team members high. Show the interviewer that you are a team player and work collaboratively. Tell the interviewer that you would like your team members to look up to you for advice. Also, they should feel free to share their ideas and suggestions with you. Instead of imposing decisions, you allow the team members to contribute and make it a collective effort. 

89.How do you monitor and review the delegated responsibilities?


This is an extension of the question on how you ensure that your team members meet deadlines. Talk about clearly defining the responsibilities, arranging regular meetings, empowering the team members to approach if there is any concern and constant updates on the progress of the work. 

90.What motivates you to give your best to your projects?


The answer varies from person to person. But responses can be ‘I like to be out of my comfort zone and hence love challenging projects’. ‘Projects which help me learn and evolve, pushing my potential’. ‘I am attracted to success and achievement. The thought of reaching the project goals within the stipulated time motivates me’. Think about the answer that you want beforehand so as to justify your statements with real-life examples. 

91.How do you deal with changes to your project?


Changes and modifications are a part and parcel of most projects. An employer wants a project manager who is flexible and adaptable to changes. The best answer can be about how you actually put in place a change management process even before the changes occur. At the same time, showcase that you are not a person shy to say ‘no’ when you feel that a certain change is not suitable for the project.  

92.How good are your communication skills?


Project managers need to have good communication skills. So, don’t be too honest and say that communication skills are your weakest area. The answer has to be either ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. But, don’t sound overconfident while saying so. If they ask for examples, be ready with two or three examples in different settings to justify your point.

93.What is your work style?


It is another question to check if you fit in with the company’s culture. It also indicates whether you are self-aware to communicate your work style. Though it sounds vague, this question provides an opportunity to show how you can be an asset to the company. You could talk about your emphasis on speed and efficiency, how you like to work collaboratively, your way of communication etc. Further, you can mention how you organize your day and how many hours you work. 

94.How do you improve your knowledge regarding project management?


Companies want their employees to be fully invested in the jobs that they are applying for. There are many software tools coming up and many processes being invented regularly in the project management landscape. Hence, project managers need to continually upgrade their skills to be relevant. Basically, tell your interviewer about what you are doing to grow in your field. It could be certification courses you are taking or workshops/courses you are attending. Also, you can talk about your interactions with project managers and people in the field to stay up-to-date with the latest. 

95.Why do you want to work with this company?


You need to go prepared for this interview question. If their working style suits yours, you can discuss it. If the job you are applying for is the next logical step for your current job, tell them that. Or, even something like you being attracted to their work culture or vision, can be a good response. Better yet, you can say how the job and the company align with your personal growth. This shows that you are looking for a long-term collaboration with the company. 

96.Did you face any problems with your co-workers in your previous company?


You might or you might not have faced issues with your former colleagues. But, if you mention that you did, don’t be too negative. You can discuss the problem. However, put your emphasis on what you did to resolve the problem. Give it a happy ending. You can also talk about what has been learned and how you would handle similar kinds of people in the future. It shows your leadership skills.

97.What is Global.MPT? When is it used?


Global.MPT is a planning template file that contains a collection of settings that are applied to all Projects.

98.What changes are applied to the Global.MPT file?


Typically, any changes you make to views, tables, filters, calendars, reports, and forms are local and apply only to the active project file, and any changes you make to toolbars, menus, and import/export maps are global. Global changes are made to the global file immediately and apply to all project files on your computer. When you open a new project file, it reflects your customized toolbars and menus.

99.Can I add/remove/update the contents of Global.MPT?


Yes. You can use Tools | Organizer … to copy the elements from one project file to global file and vice-versa.

100.Where is the Global.MPT file found?


By default, it should be found under the \\Microsoft Office\OFFICE11\1033 folder. Or else, you can run regedit.exe and do a search for Global.MPT to know the folder location.

101.Global.MPT is a local file. I don’t want everyone to maintain their own global file but want everyone to use a common Global.MPT. How can I do it?


Project checks the current folder for Global.MPT. If it is present, use it, otherwise look in the default installation folder and load the Global.MPT in background. To change this procedure, follow the below steps:

1. Copy Global.MPT to shared folder (like \\myshare\project)

2. Ask each user, to create a short-cut of Project on their desktop

3. Edit the shortcut and set the Start In folder to be shared folder

4. Now, the user launches Project using this shortcut, Project checks the Start In folder rather than current folder.

102.What is the significance of Set as Default button in Tools | Options dialog, Tracking | Set Baseline dialog?


The general options are all local settings, and apply only to the active project. If you want to make these settings the global default for all new projects, click the Set as Default button.

103.What are Enterprise Project Types?


Major components of EPTs are Workflows(Phases & Stages), Project Plan templates, Project Site templates & PDPs (Project detailed pages)

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