So your organization is embarking on a significant transformation? Great! 

By now, you’ve probably realized that a crucial piece of the puzzle is missing: a change manager!

Whether you find yourself stuck crafting a change manager job description or simply seeking assurance that you are on the right track to secure the best-fitting candidate, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, we will provide you with insights into what makes a great change manager, the roles and responsibilities they take on and the skills that are indispensable for managing change.

Read along and get ready to hire the expert that takes your organization to the next level! 

What does a change manager do? 

Before we dive into how to secure a change manager by crafting the right job description, let’s define what a change manager is hired for.

In times of organizational transformations, a change manager takes care of the people side of change. In other words: they ensure that a change initiative is not only implemented within the organization, but also embraced and adopted by its people.

They have many different change management tools and models at their disposal – along with their rich experience – to minimize resistance and get people on board!

This pays off big time. Projects with excellent change management are 7x more likely to meet their objectives, while also staying on or under budget and adhering to the schedule. To name just a few benefits!

So, what are the exact roles and responsibilities of a change manager?

Top 5 change manager roles and responsibilities

Want to craft a suitable change manager job description? Then let’s consider this list of roles and responsibilities!
Keep in mind that these vary heavily depending on the change challenge your organization is facing and its unique cultural dynamics.

Building a change strategy & plan

Without a plan, there is a lack of direction! Strategic planning is like the north star guiding the entire transformation process. So, a change manager has to be able to develop a comprehensive change plan with the help of structured methodologies. This plan not only outlines the steps toward change but also factors in potential challenges and mitigation strategies.

Stakeholder Management

Success in change management heavily relies on engaging stakeholders effectively. A great change manager excels in building relationships across all levels of the organization and understands the concerns and perspectives of diverse stakeholders. By actively involving key players, they create a sense of ownership and commitment and are able to transform resistance into collaboration.

Assessing the change impact

A change manager also takes on the role of assessor and analyzer. This responsibility involves conducting in-depth assessments of the current state of the organization, identifying key stakeholders, and analyzing the potential impact of proposed changes.
While the transformation is ongoing, the change manager needs to keep monitoring how people are responding to it, e.g. with the use of temperature checks. This way, they can adjust where necessary and successfully navigate the organization through change.


If you want to turn your employees into ambassadors, communication is key. First, employees need to be aware that the transformation is taking place. They need to understand why we’re doing this and what the benefits are going to be. And they need to know exactly what behavior is expected of them.

But a change manager must do more than just disseminate information; they need to engage in dialogue with employees. This involves setting up channels for two-way communication, ensuring that feedback is not only received but also addressed, thereby fostering an atmosphere of openness and trust.

Training and Development 

Change often necessitates a shift in skills and competencies, so a change manager sometimes has to wear the hat of a learning and development guru to ensure that employees are equipped with the knowledge and skills that are essential for the new landscape. 

The role of a change manager involves designing and implementing training programs, identifying skill gaps, and fostering a culture of continuous learning. By investing in the growth of individuals, the change manager can guarantee that the workforce is not just adaptable but will be able to thrive in the face of future change as well.

Skills and Qualifications of a Change Manager

To get a better understanding of the skills and qualifications of a change manager, let’s take a look at an actual vacancy text that we’ve written in the past for a senior change lead.

Personal Skills

    • A Team Player: someone who likes to collaborate with people across the organization.
    • Excellent relationship-building abilities: to manage stakeholders across different levels of the organization and establish important connections.
    • Strong interpersonal communication skills: this involves being able to take constructive feedback, mirroring, inspiring, listening, asking for the right questions, stimulating others to learn and motivating the rest of the organization. 
    • Knowing what to do to handle resistance: and exert influence without formal authority
    • Pro-active: meaning taking the initiative to achieve positive outcomes and enhance business performance.
    • Well-structured and creative: because every change initiative is different and so are its outcomes.
    • Capable of simplifying complex problems: and finding practical solutions.


      • A Bachelor’s or Master’s education in change management or communication or another related education such as organizational psychology, business administration, etc.
      • At least 5 years of demonstrable relevant work experience in the field of change management and communication in a multinational environment.
      • Knowledge and experience working with the most common Change Management theories (e.g. Prosci/ADKAR, Six Batteries of Change, Kotter, de Caluwe, Graves, Hofstede etc.)
      • Experience with setting up and executing change roadmaps to manage the change curve. e.g. conducting the most common analyses, setting up the storyline, making and executing on communication plans, planning and facilitating workshops, training and coaching, managing stakeholders, and other necessary (behavioral) interventions.

      What you need to offer

      Crafting a compelling job description for a change manager is not just about outlining expectations; it is also about showcasing what your organization has to offer in return for their expertise and dedication. 

      A couple of best practices? 

      • Always mention the salary in the vacancy (no – don’t just say it is competitive).
      • Don’t forget to show your face! Well, not literally perhaps, but let your company’s culture shine through the job offer so the reader feels an instant sense of connection. Think of fun benefits such as monthly gym memberships, standing desks or travel discounts.
      • Mental health in the workplace has never been as important as today, so recognize the importance of work-life balance in your vacancy. Highlight any flexible work arrangements, remote work options, or policies that promote a healthy balance between professional and personal life. 

      Be mindful that what you offer will slightly differ depending on whether you’re looking for a fixed or interim change manager.

      Get the right candidate for change

      The change manager role description is quite a broad one, even though it requires specific expertise. The precise nature of the role, along with the skills and qualifications you’ll be looking for, are heavily dependent on your organization’s unique context and the specific change challenge you are facing.

      Want to make sure that you get the right candidate for the job? In a 25-minute Discovery Call, we’ll dive into your specific change issue, figure out what type of support you need and craft the perfect job profile!