Project Management Certification

Project Management Certification Overview

Project Management Certification
For most people, there comes a point in their career when they begin thinking about how to take the next step forward.
If there's one set of skills that has remained high on the Organization radar for the past decade or so, to the point where they've become almost as sought-after and every bit as valuable as other top-level credentials, that has to be project management.
Looking for a way to stay ahead of the pack in today’s competitive and chaotic global economy, companies are turning to project management to consistently deliver business results.

An Economist Intelligence report showed that 80 percent of global executives believed having project management as a core competency helped them remain competitive during the recession

A survey by consulting giant McKinsey & Co. found that nearly 60 percent of senior executives said building a strong project management discipline is a top-three priority for their companies as they look to the future.

Is Certification Necessary
However, some people are concerned with the question should they get certified at all. If this is in your mind and wondering why this should be the case, think about what project management means and involves for a moment. It has everything to do with planning, scheduling, budgeting for, and then executing and reporting on projects of all shapes and sizes. Because almost everything that and Organization does can be understood or handled as a project of some kind.

Advantages of a Project Management certification
  • Looks great on a resume
  • PM certification proves that you have project management experience
  • Certified Project managers make more money than non-certified project managers
  • Being a Certified PM can lead to networking opportunities and potential job opportunities
  • Certification indicates that you have a commitment to the profession of project management

Will Certification make me a better project manager?
Now many will have a question that if a certification will make a professional a better project manager.
As discussed earlier, once a person achieves a certification it indicates that he has gone through the rigorous process of learning, training and ultimately clearing an exam. Doing this he imbibes into him the knowledge of best practices of project management.
However, to be an effective project manager one has to apply the knowledge gained in the process of certification.
Having knowledge is not enough, to be a better project manager performance through application is essential
Also, since project management involves working with a team, with people, personal attitude matters a lot.
As well as Interpersonal skills (Motivation, Leadership, Conflict Management) & Management skills (Decision making, budgeting, negotiation, awareness of political and cultural knowledge) are important

Which Certification is useful?
There is also a question of which certification should they go for, as there are several options. In most cases the debate is between: PMP from PMI and PRINCE2 from Axelos.
On the point of selecting the right project management certification to go for, this is a topic that occasionally spurs debates and discussions.
With this point in mind, we often think around the following:

  • Is it recognized worldwide?
  • Is it valued by employers in India?
  • Which one is best for me depending on the industry and job roles?

PMP Vs PRINCE2
Summary of PMP

  • Provides the all round guidance on project management
  • Lists the tools and techniques that can be used in a specific process
  • Guidance organized by Process groups & Knowledge areas
  • Knowledge on specific aspects of the project such as Contract management, Quality management
  • Provides guidance on leadership, motivational skills and other interpersonal skills
  • Guidance on Reporting techniques such as Earned Value Management for effective reporting
  • Guidance on the professional code of conduct of a project manager

Summary on PRINCE2®

  • Provides a complete step-by-step methodology on how to set-up and run a project
  • Emphasis on Business Case and Benefits
  • Detailed description of responsibilities of the project management team
  • Knowledge is organized around Principles (7), Processes (7), Themes (7)
  • Tailoring guidelines
  • Managed by Stages i.e. only one stage is committed at a time
  • Focus on Products
Criteria
PMP®
PRINCE2®

Recognition

Worldwide

Worldwide

Popularity

North America, Canada, Asia

UK, Western Europe, Australia

Reference Book

PMBOK®Guide

PRINCE2® Manual

What is it?

A Best Practice Guidance that can be tailored and modified

A methodology that defines the step-by-step approach on managing projects

Architecture

5 Process Groups 10 Knowledge Areas 49 processes Input / Tool / Output for each process

7 Principles 7 Processes 7 Themes Guidance on Tailoring Templates Roles & Responsibilities

Differentiator

Descriptive

Prescriptive

Defined Responsibilities

Only for the Project Manager

For the entire Project Management Team including Executive, Assurance, Team Managers, Project Manager, Supplier, User, Support

Techniques

Described what techniques can be used and when

Techniques are left to the users to decide

Scalable

Yes

Yes

Direction & Guidance from the Sponsors / Management

Some guidance in the beginning in the form of Project Charter

One entire process is dedicated to Direction and Ad-hoc guidance and approvals – Directing a Project

Tailoring Guidelines

Not provided

Provided in the Manual

Specialist Aspects such as Requirements Gathering, Costing, Reporting, Quality Techniques

Covered

Not Covered

Pre-Project

Techniques on Project Selection

Detailed description on how to start up a Project in a controlled way before committing to it

Post-Project

No such guidance

Creates the Benefits Review Plan

Governing Body

PMI®, USA

Axelos

Authorised Training Organization

R.E.P.

ATO

Eligibility – Expert Level

35 hours of Contact Training4500/7500 hours of Project Management Experience

None – although Experience is Recommended

Exam Format

Online – Computer based

Paper based

Exam Conducted By

Prometric

ATO on the last day of Training

Duration

4 hours

2.5 hours

Pattern

Multiple Choice Objective Type

Multiple Choice Objective Type

Number of Questions

200

Foundation 75Practitioner 9

Result Declaration

Immediate

Foundation - Immediate | Practitioner - approx 4 weeks

Re-Certification

60 PDU’s in 3 years

Re-exam after 5 years

Official Information

PMP® Handbook

PRINCE2® Qualifications Scheme

Official Exam Reference

Guide to PMBOK – Sixth Edition

Managing Successful Projects PRINCE2® 2017 Edition

Conclusion
PMP®; PRINCE2® are both recognized and respected across the world. Doing PMP® helps in developing the project management skills whereas PRINCE2® helps in understanding more from the project point of view. Whilst PMP® is recognized more in the US and US dominant countries, PRINCE2® is recognized in the British and their influenced countries. Having both definitely compliments and improves the marketability of a project manager!