Role of Project Managers in Agile projects

The role of Project Manager in agile projects is different from that of traditional ones. Usually, in Traditional projects, the project manager “manages” the entire flow of the project, right from planning, execution till closing. In Agile projects, the project manager plays more of a facilitator, coach and plays an important role in communication, stakeholder management, risk mitigation and so on.

Stakeholder management

In traditional projects (read. waterfall), the stakeholder involvement is very minimal and limited. They involve more during the project kickoff while signing the contracts, during Project StartUp meeting, while drafting BRDs (business requirement documents). Then the project kicks-off, the PM usually monitors the execution of the project for the specified project duration and reach out to clients back for User Acceptance, Release planning and other closing formalities.

In Agile projects, the development team works along with business(read Product Owner, Product Management) on a day-to-day basis. The project manager plays a key role here in establishing effective communication between the team and business. Assist and guide the team in converting business requirements to Epics, Features. Assist the product management to set up Product Roadmap, Product Vision, System Vision for the train and owners to do effective product backlog maintenance (estimation and ranking). They also play a key role in guiding ArchCop team for maintaining their architecture runway, design guidelines. They maintain the ROAM board where Risks at program and train level are listed. They review the risks at least once in a sprint with POs, PMs, RTEs and assist the team back in mitigating the potential risks.


Establishing clear communication channels, defined process matrix is very very crucial for agile projects. The project manager in an agile project ensures that communication between team and business is clear, transparent. They encourage using proper channels like emails, MS teams rather than private chats. 

It is the duty of the project manager to effectively communicate any impediments for the team or any blockers causing potential show-stopper, to the business team , so they could adjust their sprint accordingly.

Teams’ progress

Project manager of an agile project monitors the team progress with burndown, burnup, cumulative flow diagrams, analyze them for improvements, interpret teams’ progress and if needed, present them to stakeholders. They also involve actively in Sprint reviews, Sprint demos to collect feedback from business , so the team can adjust their upcoming sprints towards PI-objectives.

Continuous Improvement

They play an important role in various process, technical improvement initiatives within the train. Optimizing the current workflow, improving the overall system, taking up the initiatives with business, hosting problem solving workshops for redundant problems and coming up with action items are few important activities of a project manager in agile projects.

To conclude,  project manager of an agile project should not only have leadership and technical skills, but effective communication, stakeholder management , problem-solving skills are key to have the technical team and business team in harmony.

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