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How useful PMP Certification is for Project Managers?

So, what does it take to be a good project manager? A hotly debated topic, right! Ask around and probably everyone will assert their own verdict about it. From your overall personality, to your skills, to your knowledge; each and every trait helps you to earn the stripes of a good project manager.

Now this poses a great question – How does one acquire these skills and knowledge? Is it god gifted? Rarely one out of the crowd is blessed. Does it come with experience? Yes, certainly it does! And in the last, does one need to be academically trained or more precisely – Does one need to be PMP certified? To find the answer, let”s look into some of the major aspects of PMP certification for project managers.

PMP-certificationIt beefs up your resume…

Having PMP certified mentioned on your resume does make a difference and helps you better market yourself to the prospective employers. How? According to a research done by The Standish Group, an independent international IT research advisory firm mainly into reports about information systems implementation projects in the public and private sector, the percentage of CIO’s demanding certified project managers has increased from 21% in 2005 to 31% in 2009.

This clearly indicates that employers are getting quite attentive about hiring managers who have undergone professional training. Therefore, having the credential increases your chances of getting priority over those who are not certified. Want to know more? Just Google out the term project manager jobs and you’ll see majority of the posts will show PMP certification as a requisite, as an advantage or a plus.

It helps you score more salary…

Having that PMP certified tag increases the probability of getting higher pay scale as compared to those without the certification. Search it on web and you’ll find plenty of sources indicating that PMPs make upto $10,000 per annum, whereas non-certified managers earn 10-15% less than this.

It extends your network…

Being a part of the PMP community gives you an added advantage of creating networks for better growth, both in terms of learning and job opportunities. By participating in the meetings and conferences that are held between project management professionals, you have a great fortuity to build contacts with other proficients in this field.

It demands investment…

Nothing in this world is for free, and same goes for the PMP Online Certification. In order to become a certified project manager, you need to pull some bucks out of your pocket. The cost of formal training and examination ranges from $150 to $450, which might seem to be a heavy investment to many aspiring candidates. However, a good possibility is that those who are already working as project managers can ask their companies to pay for the formal training, because ultimately this will benefit their business.

It asks for time…

You need to devote time to study for the certification for a couple of months. Those who are already into a job might find it a bit difficult to manage things simultaneously. Still, keeping track of your time can help you create a balance between your work and study. You can schedule a fixed number of hours on daily basis and note them down to ensure that the schedule is being followed.

Now that we’ve seen a few pros and cons of having a PMP certification, let’s take a look at what research has to say about this.

In an analysis, published by the Project Management Journal Study, PMP certification is being ranked as the #11 competency, out of the top 15 competencies required by a project manager. The top rated qualities in the list includes leadership, communication at multiple levels, verbal and written skills, work history, experience, and so on….

Furthermore, when considered the project success rate across these five criterions, i.e.:

  • the overall cost of the project
  • the time spent on completing the project
  • the technical specifications
  • the business requirements
  • and client satisfaction

It was found that there was hardly any significant difference in the success rate of the projects supervised by certified and non-certified project managers. From this, it is quite clear that though having a PMP certification does gives you a weightage over others, but it hardly contributes much to the success of the projects you lead.

My take

Since project management is an art, it is your inner strength, your skills and qualities that’d help you stand out of the crowd. My viewpoint is that your ability to communicate at multiple levels in the organization and the tacit knowledge of knowing when to exercise leadership are critical to eventual goal accomplishment. At the same time, we cannot deny the big benefits PMP has to offer as it keeps you a step ahead in terms of career and knowledge.

Considering all the points, you’ve to decide whether you’d want to go for a PMP certification or not. I’d love to know what do you think about the PMP. Is it worth the effort? Does it ensure project success? Are all the PMP holders in the industry good managers? Or it just gives your project management career a scientific direction?

Author Bio-

Kanika Sharma works as a writer at ProofHub. For the past 2 years, she has been writing for various technology blogs. Being an engineering graduate, her background allows her to connect with cutting edge technologies and relate them with real world scenarios. She also likes to think and pen down her thoughts towards various facets of life. When she is not writing, she can be found in the abode of Himalayas, as exploring nature excites her the most. She is an early riser and loves to bask in the morning sun rays. Kanika also enjoys sketching, cooking, dancing and spending time with her family and folks. Her future plans include joining a writing community, a vacation in Paris and riding a white horse. Follow Kanika on Twitter to know more about her.

After working as digital marketing consultant for 4 years Deepak decided to leave and start his own Business. To know more about Deepak, find him on Facebook, LinkedIn now.


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