What Does a Delivery Manager Do? (With Duties and Salary)

Updated 16 July 2023

A delivery manager, also known as an information technology (IT) service manager, is a professional who helps coordinate a project team to develop and deliver a product. These professionals typically gain employment in the technology industry, developing computer software. Understanding the role of an IT service manager can help you gain insight into the process of project development. In this article, we discuss what a delivery manager does, provide a guide on how to become one and explore some managerial skills.

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What does a delivery manager do?

When understanding the answer to, ‘What does a delivery manager do?’, it can be important to know that the main purpose of this profession is to ensure the quality and timely production of software. To fulfil that purpose, a delivery or service manager may have several of the following responsibilities:

Ensure the quality of products

Throughout developing technology software, IT service managers may review and alter the production methods. They usually change the project's style of production to maintain the quality of the software. A delivery manager may regularly conduct software tests to ensure the product aligns with the project's goals. They often utilise quality control systems (QMS) to help manage the testing and evaluation of products. A QMS can also help a project leader clarify their production procedures and document the project's progression.

Work closely with a project manager

A delivery manager shares responsibilities with a project manager, but their primary goal is usually different. The project manager oversees the entire project, while a delivery manager oversees the project team. A delivery manager typically informs the project manager of the team's progress and performance. Both managers work together to form strategies, budgets and production processes.

Maintain the efficiency of production

A delivery manager helps manage a project team to ensure the smooth development of products. They often achieve production efficiency by listening to the needs of team members and providing them with the tools to succeed. These managers can review the project to identify potential blockers. The term blocker in project management usually refers to anything that might halt the production of the product. An IT service manager may implement a solution to remove the blocker and reduce the number of obstacles in the production process.

Set project goals

Most projects have goals to reach which are set by a project manager. Service managers may help set these goals, but they usually focus on providing targets to team members. Targets are typically short-term plans that can help an individual or team reach a goal. By setting team targets, delivery managers can inspire their team members to work hard and develop quality products.

Create management strategies

Depending on the project, an IT service manager may implement several types of management strategies. The agile management strategy is often a popular choice. Agile management is setting incremental targets and goals for the project. This can help a manager adapt the production process to suit the project. They may start the project with a broad strategy, but as the development progresses, they can refine the strategy to make it more specific. This management process can allow teams to learn and adapt to project conditions.

Keep the workplace culture positive

To ensure the successful completion of a project, a delivery manager may use their management skills to improve the team environment. When team members enjoy working with their colleagues and have a logical goal, the team can work efficiently and productively. A delivery manager can improve the workplace culture by rewarding team members for their commitment and resolving workplace conflicts efficiently.

Related: 10 Examples of Positive Manager Behaviour (With Benefits)

How to become an IT delivery manager

Here you can find a helpful guide with steps on how to become an IT delivery manager:

1. Gain industry skills

Hiring managers typically search for candidates with skills in management and computer software. You can take many pathways to improve your delivery management knowledge. An effective method may be to complete a bachelor's degree relating to management or software development. A bachelor's degree usually takes three years to complete. Depending on your chosen degree, you may learn a variety of management strategies and software developing processes.

Related: How to Become a Consulting Project Manager (with FAQs)

2. Learn Agile management

Learning the Agile management strategy can show potential recruiters that you understand the process of delivery management. You may also consider becoming Scrum certified. Scrum is a specific style of agile management that hiring managers may value highly. There may be a variety of online courses and organisations that can provide you with Scrum and Agile certifications. The length and prerequisites for becoming certified can depend on the certification you choose.

Related: Certification for Project Managers: 15 Qualifications

3. Apply for an IT delivery career

Once you have the skills and certifications, you may apply for a career in delivery management. Depending on your potential employer, the requirements may vary. You may gain employment with software development companies. You can apply for an IT service role using the Indeed Job Board.

Related: How to Write a Service Delivery Manager Resume in 8 Steps

Delivery management leadership styles

To be a successful delivery manager, you may require specific leadership skills. The leadership style might be a combination of participative leadership and delegation leadership. Below you can find more details on the two styles of leadership and how they may assist you:

Participative leadership

A leadership style that focuses heavily on democratic principles is participative leadership. A manager with this style of leadership utilises the ideas and feedback of their team to make informed and beneficial decisions. This type of leadership can help a team feel valued by their management, which may lead to an increase in efficiency and production.

As an IT service manager, you may practice participative leadership by communicating with your team members. This can provide you with information on processes they may require assistance with. One of your main goals may be to ensure the team has the equipment and resources to complete their job. Discussing your team's needs and considering their input can help you make decisions that benefit the entire team.

Delegative leadership

A leader who has a delegation leadership style usually avoids micromanagement. People also know this style of leadership as laissez-faire. Leaders who manage a team with this method of leadership typically trust their team to conduct themselves professionally and complete their responsibilities. Delegative leadership is often an effective way of creating a positive work environment because the team members feel trusted.

You can consider incorporating a laissez-faire leadership style in the management of your team. When managing your team, your responsibilities may focus more on what resources the team requires, rather than on the individual actions of team members. By using the delegation leadership style, you can encourage your team to be proactive and innovative.

What is Scrum and why do project teams use it?

Scrum is essentially a management tool that allows teams to work together efficiently. The Scrum process allows for project teams to apply their knowledge and create adaptive solutions for project blockers. The process for scrum management is to identify opportunities, understand goals, evaluate solutions and deploy strategies. Scrum management is typically a globally recognised management framework.

How much does a delivery manager earn?

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at the time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

The average national salary of a delivery manager is $124,797 per year. Project size and the company you potentially gain employment with can determine how high your salary is. The state you live in might also determine how much you earn as an IT service manager.

Below you can find the average national salary of a delivery manager in different cities:

  • Sydney, NSW: $138,456 per year

  • Perth, WA: $148,213 per year

  • Melbourne, VIC: $130,688 per year

  • Brisbane, QLD: $120,785 per year

  • Canberra, ACT: $113,267 per year

  • Parramatta, NSW: $142,208 per year

  • Newcastle, NSW: $117,373 per year

Skills in delivery management

Below you can find some of the useful skills that can benefit an IT service manager:


Adaptability can allow a delivery manager to change their management and leadership style to suit the project. By changing strategies as the project develops, a manager can maintain a consistent level of production. You can improve your adaptability by learning from your mistakes and following the examples of adaptable leaders.


An innovative mindset can help a service manager create unique and effective strategies to improve the team's performance. Innovative thinking can also assist them when creating solutions to production issues. You can improve your innovation by increasing your industry knowledge and considering the opinions of friends and colleagues.

Computer skills

IT service managers usually focus on the management aspects of a project, but they can still benefit from having a basic knowledge of computers. They typically manage a team of software developers, so it can be beneficial for them to understand technical terminology. You can improve your computer skills by completing training programs or education in technology.

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