Is AI going to replace project managers?

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A couple of weeks back, ChatGPT saw the light of day; we were thrilled about its initial possibilities. On the other hand - we immediately began to wonder if we would soon become redundant. Can the AI tools develop an app or go in the project manager's shoes?

Before answering this bothering question, let’s check how project managers, scrum masters, and product owners can benefit from AI.

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Project Manager and Scrum Master perspective

1. Algorithms. All the projects we need to manage goes hand with a huge amount of data. In waterfall methodologies, we had, for instance, a project journal. It was a mine of knowledge about the project that could benefit future ones - having data from the past could help project managers to make better decisions, mitigate risks and be more accurate in decision-making. Agile methodologies also use data for the project's calculations, e.g.: velocity, estimations, burn-down charts, and cumulative flow diagrams. AI algorithms help project managers to analyze large amounts of data. It could benefit in identifying patterns and managing risks and projects schedule.

2. Automation. All project managers know that there are repetitive project parts, so automating some tasks could bring more efficiency to the project and give project managers more time for other project activities.

3. Tracking and monitoring. Project management tools that use AI can be helpful for project management tracking and monitoring. Real-time updates about project progress or identifying potential blockers before they will actually arise would be a perfect help.

4. Communication. AI can be used to schedule meetings automatically, listen during the meeting, and at the end, provide a summary with action points after discussion. Moreover, providing translations on-fly is also a helpful option. AI-powered virtual assistants can automate stand-up meetings, save time and reduce the administrative burden on the Scrum Master - but within this option, I’d be very cautious.

5. Continuous Improvement. AI algorithms can help identify areas for continuous improvement within a Scrum team. For example: identifying inefficiencies in the process or areas where team members need additional help or training.

6. Sprint Planning. AI algorithms can assist in sprint planning by suggesting the most efficient sprint plan based on the team's capacity, project requirements, and past performance.

Product Owner perspective

7. Customer data. From the perspective of Product Owners, AI algorithms could help analyze customer data and behaviour to provide valuable insights into customer needs and preferences. This information would be perfect for Product Owners to help them decide about possible features and capabilities to prioritize.

8. Market Trends. Thanks to AI, Product Owners can stay up-to-date on market trends, new technologies, and emerging competition. With this information provided, Product Owners could be more efficient in creating product strategies and ensuring that the product stays relevant and competitive in the market.

To sum up, AI can be a perfect and robust solution for Project Managers, Scrum Masters, and Product Owners. It can automate and bring efficiency in areas such us: 2. Project scheduling and budgeting 3. Data analysis from existing and historical projects 4. Administrative tasks associated with a project 5. Setting KPIs 6. Project task management and prioritization 7. Task automation 8. Risk prediction and mitigation 9. Resource allocation 10. Team collaboration 11. Support documentation
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Why is it so important?

If we want to present the Project Manager role in one sentence, we can say that he has to take care of the project triangle: budget, time, and scope. It's usually not an easy piece of the cake, and around 60% of projects can fail:


- 21% of projects were cancelled before being delivered or were never used;
- only 37% of all projects succeeded in delivering the required functionality on time and budget;
- 46% of projects were over budget ;
- 63% of projects were either challenged or failed; and
- 71% of projects were delivered late.


If bringing AI to the table could reduce this appalling number and, at the same time, take the weight off the Project Manager's shoulders, I believe it's a massive opportunity for improvement than a danger.

Why won’t AI replace project managers?

Apart from all the analytical and paperwork parts of the PM’s job - an equally significant part of it is working with people and communication. I believe Project Managers (or even Scrum Masters and Product Owners) have leadership skills and public speaking skills and should be able to maintain good relationships with the teams and customers.


Moreover, they are often negotiators with excellent communication skills that so far can’t be replaced by AI. Taking care of your team and responding to their individual and personal needs is not a job for AI, but it requires human input with emotional intelligence.

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Written by: Karolina, on March 31, 2023
Project Management