Don't settle for the basics...
Regardless of the chosen methodology, all projects are reliant on the constraints of the project management triangle. Whilst it is important to manage and explain this core element, the triangle and many other common tools (e.g. regular status reporting, robust project plans) are the bare minimum a project manager should be bringing to the table.
For a project to be truly successful, your project manager should have a deep understanding of the change ahead, be able to empathise with users who need to adapt and be prepared to make a similar emotional investment as the rest of the project team. The changes in people, process and data need to be understood and balanced against the chosen technology.
By being directly involved and having trusted oversight on hundreds of technology projects, we have a sense of what both bad and good look like with a clear view on how to address the former and build upon the latter.
Managing risk is another core skill project managers require but often the risk register will be drafted and discarded, instead of being the organic artefact it should be. This leads to a watermelon project which upwardly reports a green status whereas a deep pool of red risks exists, just beneath the surface.
Projects must ensure sponsors retain control by factoring in decision points that align to the critical success points of the project. Traditional checkpoints tend to occur once the cost is incurred or the issue has progressed and governance groups are faced with dealing with this after the fact rather than ahead of time.
Traditional benefit articulation lacks specificity and aims to placate decision makers with promise of efficiency or transparency. Each benefit statement should have a business owner, a clear measure of success and a baseline taken prior to any change.
Project managers that excel tend to have a deep technical background which allows translation of technical complexity to senior stakeholders whilst being able to hold the "techies" to account. Talk to us about our deep software development skills and ability to assess a vendor's software development practices.