How to Command a Higher Salary with the Right Change Skills & Change Management Experience

One of the promising careers for the foreseeable future is in change management. Organizations go through changes regularly and they’ve come to realize that without the right change management skills guiding the process, change projects can easily fail.

The need for change management professionals with the right change management experience and skills has led to the U.S. Department of Labor projecting a growth in this job field of 14% between 2018-2028, which is well above the average of 5-8%.

The salary that someone will make in a change management career can vary widely according to their change skills, certification, and experience.

For example, a Change Management Analyst with just a year or two of experience can make $62,000/year, while a Senior Organizational Change Manager with several years of experience and certification can make $100,000-$200,000/year.

change management skills

Identifying “What is Change Management Skills”

Are you considering a career managing organizational change projects? Then it’s important to know the change management skills definition of the firms you’re applying with and how much more pay you can get with the right experience.

In this article, we’ll review the typical change management skills needed to be a change management professional. We’ll also look at:

  • How change management experience impacts pay rate
  • Change management skills definition (soft skills and certifications)
  • How to make your own change management skills PDF for reference
  • Where you can get additional change management experience to boost your resume


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What is Change Management Skills?

The change management skills definition can cover a variety of different items that you’ll see in job listings and on resumes for change managers.

Change management skills on resume submissions and that employers are looking for can include any or all of the following.

Change Management Experience in Years

One of the categories you’ll find listed in a change management skills PDF or online job listing will include the years of experience performing change management activities.

Now, because project management and change management are closely related, some employers may consider experience managing projects when looking at your change management experience, so it’s a good idea to also include that on your resume.

The more years of change management expertise a person has, the more they can earn in salary.

Change Skills Considered “Soft Skills”

There are several skills required for change management that are considered “soft skills.” These are skills related to interpersonal relationships and they’re important because guiding people through an organizational change is vital to change project success.

Thus, many employers are looking for these types of change management skills on resume submissions because they directly relate to the ability to guide and lead people through a change project.

Soft change skills that employers are looking for include:

  • Being a great communicator
  • The ability to get along with a wide range of personality types
  • Leadership and mentoring skills
  • Being a team player
  • The ability to listen to the concerns of others
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Being a good negotiator
  • Excellent organizational and planning skills

Change Management Certifications & Training

One other item that some employers may put in their category for “What is change management skills?” includes any change management certifications or training that you may have.

There is a wide range of change skills training and certification programs you can seek out to boost your change management skills on your resume. Showing that you’ve taken a professional course in change management can improve your salary prospects as well as your change management expertise.

Change training and certification programs will take you through the basics of change management and how to break down a project into multiple steps. They’ll also emphasize the importance of those soft skills when It comes to the skills required for change management success.

Here is a list of the top 8 best change management skills certifications.

Here is a list of change management training options.


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What Skills Do You Need for Change Management?

Soft skills aren’t the only change management skills definition there is. Change management job applicants also need to have skills related to technology and knowledge of change models and methodology.

If you’re considering a career in change management and have been searching on “what is change management skills” to add to your resume, we have several below that are pertinent to this career field.

  • Organization: Change management, just like project management, means keeping many balls in the air at once. This means that any list of change skills should have the ability to organize multiple tasks at the top.
  • Technology/Software: Many changes have to do with technology, and while you may not need to be an expert, it’s important to have decent skills with productivity tools and understand the types of training people will need to adopt new technology.
  • Analysis: Change managers need the ability to “read the tea leaves” of organizational KPIs to identify where change would benefit a company and how a change project is progressing.
  • Communications: Another important area of change management expertise is being able to communicate effectively with employees, managers, executives, vendors, and other project stakeholders.
  • Leadership & Teamwork: Being able to both lead a team and be a contributing part of a team is another of the important skills required for change management.
  • Interpersonal Skills: Resistance management is a big part of the change management process. Being able to interface with people, listen to their objections to the change, and resolve those barriers to garner support are vital change management skills.
  • Problem Solving: As with any project, things will go wrong, barriers will arise, and things can go off the rails. It’s important to have good problem-solving skills and a steady hand to adjust as needed and keep a change project on course.
  • Education/Certification: The change management experience and expertise you pick up from education and certification are also important to employers. This can mean a B.S. degree requirement or a request for a change certification.
  • Change Experience: Often, change management skills on resume requests have to do with the on-the-job experience one gets when managing a change project. Many employers will look for the change skills related to experience managing change projects.


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Change Management Skills on Resume | How to Boost Your Chances

When it comes to change management skills on resume submissions, it’s important to match how you describe your skills to what employers are looking for.

A good approach to this is to review several change management job listings and job descriptions and make a list of the common change management skills being mentioned the most. You can call this your “hot list” of change skills.

Use these to guide how you list your own change management skills definition on your resume. Of course, make sure you have the skill or change management experience level before listing it.

Here are some tips to boost how your change management skills on resume submissions show value to the interviewer, which could get you better pay for the position.

  • Match how you describe your skills to change management skills requirements in job postings.
  • If you have Microsoft 365, use Resume Assistant to view change management profile descriptions on LinkedIn for more ideas.
  • Include any project management experience you have (many projects involve change elements).
  • Be sure to highlight your soft skills and “people” skills, which are important change management skills that employers look for.
  • Include any leadership or team-related extra-curricular or volunteer experiences you’ve had that speak to these change skills.
  • Take a change management training course online so you can add to your change management experience and knowledge value.


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Where Do I Gain Change Management Experience?

What do you do if you don’t have enough change management experience for the position you want or would like to start a career in change management and don’t have any experience?

There are several ways you can build up your change management skills and experience to allow you to have a better chance at a healthy pay rate in the change management industry.

change management experience Ways to Gain Change Management Experience

At Your Current Job

If you’re in a different position and you want to move into change management, see if there are opportunities to assist with changes happening at your organization.

Even if you work for a smaller organization that doesn’t have a formal change management program, you can ask to help get people on board with a new team messaging tool or help facilitate a change in workflow of another kind.

By practicing change management on a smaller scale at your current job, and studying change management basics, you can gain valuable change management experience to add to your resume.

Non-Profit Volunteer

If you’re unable to get change management experience at a current job or if you’re finishing school and would like to add change management skills on resume submissions after you graduate, you can look for volunteer opportunities.

Non-profit organizations often rely on volunteers to help with multiple facets of their operations. This could offer you an opportunity to volunteer to work on a change project, which would give you some change management experience to add to your resume.

Interning or Entry-Level Position

Whether you’re just entering the workforce or are changing careers mid-stream in your life, taking an entry-level change management position or interning at a change consultancy can be a way to gain experience.

There are many organizations, both large and small, that provide change management expertise to projects as consultants. These organizations often hire interns or entry-level change assistants to train.

You can find a list of change management consultants here to check out.

Training & Freelance Projects

Another way you can build up your change management skills and experience level is to go through online or in-person training in change management and then offer change management services on a freelance basis.

There are always smaller companies out there looking for change management skills for their projects, but that also needs an economical option. So, they may be willing to work with someone new to the field, allowing you to gain important change management skills and experience to add to your resume.


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How Much Value Does Change Management Expertise Have?

What’s the value of getting a change management certification? Which change management skills offer the best salary prospects?

We’ve reviewed multiple change management job listings to give you an idea of what the value of change management experience and skills are when it comes to better pay and income.

Of course, every position is subject to the needs of the employer, but this information will give you an idea of what to expect.

Overall salary range:  According to Salary.com, the annual salary range for a change management specialist is between $96,378 and $170,564. The median change management salary is $127,672.

Multiple factors go into the skills required for change management, here is a breakdown of several change skills areas.

Change Management Education & Experience

What can you expect according to your level of education and change management experience? These are median change management annual salary estimates based on education and experience.

  • High School Diploma/Technical Certificate, 0-1 years experience: $118,381
  • High School Diploma/Technical Certificate, 5-6 years experience: $120,337
  • College Degree, 0-1 years experience: $121,071
  • College Degree, 5-6 years experience: $123,515

Certification in Change Management

In reviewing job listings on sites such as LinkedIn, we found that approximately 30% of change management jobs request a certification, with Prosci certification being the most requested.

However, there was no distinct difference in the pay rates offered for change management positions, whether certification was included in change management skills on resumes or not.

But, if you do have a certification, it means you qualify for more positions than someone that doesn’t have one. It can also provide you a way to balance out a lack of real-world change management experience.

Most Requested Soft Change Management Skills

Which soft skills for change management will give you the best chance at a higher pay offer?

We’ve reviewed multiple job postings on Indeed for change management positions. Listed below are the top three soft skills we found.

  1. Communication skills and ability to develop communication strategies/presentations
  2. Ability to work well with a team as well as independently
  3. Strong problem solving and analytical skills

Bolstering your command of these skills and including them on your resume can increase your value to an employer.


List of Change Skills to Copy/Paste for a Change Management Skills (PDF)

When creating or updating a resume for a job in change management, it’s helpful to have change management skills (PDF or Word) of all the top change skills being requested.

Below, we’ve included a list of change skills that you can use. Just copy/paste this list into a word processing app and export to PDF to make your own change management skills PDF document to reference when building your resume and necessary skills.

Business & Soft Skills – Change Management

  • High-stress tolerance
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Excellent decision-making
  • Problem resolution
  • Organizational and task management
  • Enthusiastic about change management
  • Works well with a team or independently
  • Ability to train and mentor
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Customer service skills
  • Leadership/management capabilities
  • Ability to interface well with executives, employees, customers
  • Self-starter, independent thinker
  • Active listening skills
  • Influencing skills/ability to inspire others
  • Strong oral, written, and presentation skills
  • Training program development
  • Project management skills
  • Willingness to travel
  • Knowledge of structured change management approach

Software Experience or Proficiency – Change Management

  • MS Word
  • MS Excel
  • MS PowerPoint
  • MS Project
  • SharePoint
  • Microsoft 365
  • Yammer
  • Visio
  • Workday
  • Human Resource systems
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • PeopleSoft ERP
  • ERP systems

Change Management Certifications

  • Prosci certification
  • PMP® certification
  • ACMP CCMP™ certification
  • Other change management certification


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Conclusion | Skills Required for Change Management Jobs at Higher Pay Scales

When it comes to finding a good-paying job in change management, there is plenty to choose from and the career field is expected to continue growing.

There are multiple change management skills that employers review when choosing a job candidate and when deciding how much to offer in salary.

Knowing which skills required for change management can help you get a leg up on the competition and that can add more value to your resume is import if you want to get the best job offer possible.

We hope that this AGS article explaining change management experience and skills requirements has provided you with valuable insights and will help you in achieving your income goals in your chosen change management career path.

Change Management Skills FAQ

What are the 5 key elements of successful change management?

There are many change management skills needed to be a successful change manager. Five of the key elements for successful change management are:
1. Communications
2. Leadership
3. Resolving resistance to change
4. Training & mentoring
5. Reinforcing a change after the project is complete

What are the change management skills?

The definition of change management skills can cover a variety of different items that you’ll see in job listings and on resumes for change managers. They will typically include a combination of soft skills, business skills, experiential skills, and skills learned through change management training or certification courses.

Is change management a good career?

Yes, change management is a good career. The U.S. Department of Labor projects a growth in this job field of 14% between 2018-2028, which is above the average of 5-8%. The average annual salary range for a change management specialist is between $96,378 and $170,564.

What do you mean by change management?

Change management is a framework by which an organizational change is planned and managed. It focuses largely on the people being impacted by any change and incorporates elements such as resistance management, training, communications planning, and more to ensure a change is executed successfully.


Authors: Ogbe Airiodion (Senior Change Management Lead) and Francesca Crolley (AGS Cloud Content Producer)
Content on Airiodion Global Services (AGS)'s Airiodion.com website is copyrighted. Questions? Contact Airiodion Global Services (AGS) .

Best Change Management Toolkits & Templates

Get Yours Today...


Free & Downloadable Change Management Plans (Excel, PDF, PPT)

Get Your Copy Today

Free Change Management Plan and Template - Airiodion Global Services (AGS)-min


►► FREE Change Mgt Strategy Playbook and Toolkit ◄◄


►► Change Impacts Assessment Toolkit ◄◄


►► Change Readiness Templates & Toolkit ◄◄


►► Change Management Toolkit | All You Need ◄◄


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