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What is PMP? Why Your Company Should Use PMP Certification

Why Your Company Should Use PMP Certification

PMP is an acronym for Project Management Professional. This internationally recognized certification is the gold standard in project management. This certification is awarded by the Project Management Institute (PMI) and is a widely accepted and valued designation that is utilized across multiple departments and market sectors.

We’ve all experienced at some time in an organization when an important project goes wrong because someone dropped the ball, a contingency that wasn’t planned for arose, or there was no one ensuring that everything was moving forward according to timeline and budget. No matter whether your project is constructing a new manufacturing facility or putting in an upgrade to your computer networking system, a well-trained project manager overseeing the project details is key to ensuring that everything goes according to plan.

Why PMP certification is important for companies

Beyond just the overview understanding that an employee trained in PMP and that has gone through project management certification is more likely to ensure a successful project completion, there are some important statistics and detailed benefits illustrating the importance of PMP training.

According to PMI’s “Pulse of the Profession” study in 2015, organizations waste US $109 million for every US $1billion invested in projects and programs, but those organizations that embrace, value, and utilize project management report more success, less waste, and achieve greater competitive advantage.

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Here are a few important statistics from the study:

  • When more than a third of project managers have PMP certification, it was found that organizations complete more of their projects on time, on budget and meeting original goals.
  • High performing organizations that adhere to proven project management practices meet original goals and business intent two-and-a-half times more often than those in low performing organizations (90 percent vs. 36 percent).
  • High performing organizations waste about 13 times less money than low performers.
  • On average, 64 percent of projects in organizations are successful. This offers a huge opportunity for improvement using project management training.
  • When there is a formal knowledge transfer process in place for project management, project success increases by 13 percent (70 percent success with the item, 57 percent success without).

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Components that contribute to successful projects

There are some important key components that are major factors in contributing to a successful project. Organizations and their project managers that adopt these practices are most likely to complete projects within or under budget, according to the original project goals, within the planned timeline, and successfully on all fronts.

  • Organizations fully understand the value of project management
  • Actively engaged project sponsors
  • High alignment of projects to strategy
  • High project management maturity
  • High program management maturity

What is involved with project management certification?

The process to have an employee trained as a project management professional is not difficult and Pro Learning Hub offers a straight-forward training process that is engaging for your project manager as they go through the PMP course and that will provide the needed preparation to ensure they successfully pass the PMP exam.

There are a few prerequisites for an employee to obtain PMP certification. These PMP requirements include:

Either…

  • Secondary degree (high school diploma, associate’s degree or the global equivalent)
  • 7,500 hours leading and directing projects
  • 35 hours of project management education

OR

  • Four-year degree
  • 4,500 hours leading and directing projects
  • 35 hours of project management education

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The PMP certification exam has 200 multiple-choice questions and the person has four hours to complete it. To maintain the PMP certification, the project manager must earn 60 professional development units (PDUs) every three years.

The PMP course and final PMP exam questions cover many important areas of project management and ensuring successful completion of projects. The PMP test is laid out into five main areas, and each area contains a certain percentage of the overall PHP exam questions.

Section 1: Initiating (13 percent of items on test)

Section 2: Planning (24 percent of items on the test)

Section 3: Executing (31 percent of items on the test)

Section 4: Monitoring and Controlling (25 percent of items on test)

Section 5: Closing (7 percent of items on test)

There are multiple project management related knowledge and skills that are learned in going through the PMP training, practice exam, and the final PMP certification exam. You can request a full PMP course list that lists all of them from Pro Learning Hub, but here are 10 of the approximately 47 fundamental skills that are taught.

  1. Benefit analysis techniques
  2. Estimation tools and techniques
  3. Human resource planning
  4. Workflow diagramming techniques
  5. Continuous improvement processes
  6. Interdependencies among project elements
  7. Performance measurement and tracking techniques
  8. Project finance principles
  9. Archiving practices and statutes
  10. Close-out procedures

 

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The course also includes many “cross-cutting” knowledge and soft skills that can be applied to more than just the project management professional realm. A successful PMP has to work with many different people both from inside your organization and outside it, so learning how to motivate, direct, and manage them all is important. The PMP course also teaches key management skills like:

  • Active listening
  • Business acumen
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Generational sensitivity and diversity
  • Knowledge management
  • Situational awareness
  • Virtual/remote team management
  • …among many others

Employers are learning the value of project management training

Over the last 8+ years since the global recession, companies have had to maximize their assets and learn to work with fewer resources on a daily basis. This has also caused many employers to realize the benefits of having a certified project management professional that can lower costs and ensure money isn’t wasted on projects and help choose projects wisely aligned with corporate goals.

According to CIO.com, citing a research from The Standish Group, two-thirds of CIOs (Chief Information Officers) surveyed stated that PMP certification was valuable. The number of CIOs who require their project managers to be certified grew from 21 percent in 2005 to 31 percent in 2009.

IBM is a big believer in PMP certification and is a highlighted case study at PMI. They identified project management as “the key to reliably delivering commitments” and the lack of it as “a major factor in failure, contributed to by the entire organization.”

The case study reports that:

  • 90 percent of IBM’s PMP certified project managers report that the certification helps them with their jobs.
  • The number of troubled projects with documented roof causes in project management has decreased by 25 percent.
  • Corporations they work with recognize the value of PMP certification and request that individuals with PMP credentials be placed on their projects.

Conclusion

Project management certification is not just a nice title to add to someone’s position, it’s a vital asset in today’s economy and a fundamental base of any highly performing successful organization. PMP certification provides the base of knowledge and skills needed to plan, direct, manage, and analyze multiple project types across a myriad of different departments within an organization or for their customers.

Profitability, cost control, good client relations, and ongoing growth and success are just some of the many elements for which good project management is fundamental.  A PMP certification program makes certain that your staff is prepared and trained to help your organization achieve success on multiple fronts.

 

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