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PMP: How New Generation Engineers and Developers Jumpstart their Career
  • By: Lisa
  • 01 Jun 2015

PMP: How New Generation Engineers and Developers Jumpstart their Career

In the business world, projects are a universal term. As a new-age engineer or developer, you can take the help of a PMP certification to make these projects successful.
 
In the competitive scenario that you find yourself in today, professional growth isn't something that can be ignored, especially in the tech industry. Even though Project Management Professional Certification, which is an industry-recognized certification relevant for project managers, might not necessarily serve as the first certification for programmers or engineers, it is surely advantageous for those desirous of moving ahead! 
 
According to Victor Carter-Bey, spokesperson of the Project Management Institute, "Project management in and of itself is similar when you think about a project being a temporary endeavor that's used to undertake and create a new product or an offering”, he added, "It's very much aligned [with engineering and development] from that perspective, because it's all about the creation of a product."
 
The results of a study from the same Project Management Institute reveals that approxmately15.7 million project jobs in the field of management will be created globally through 2020. Today, with IT being one of the fastest-growing sectors, those carrying the PMP certification would earn 16 percent more on an average when compared to their peers who fail to possess the same credentials. According to PMI sources, there exist few requirements for gaining a PMP certification. It is essential to have either, "A secondary degree (high school diploma, associate's degree, or the global equivalent) with at least five years of project management experience, with 7,500 hours leading and directing projects and 35 hours of project management education” or "A four-year degree (bachelor's degree or the global equivalent) and at least three years of project management experience, with 4,500 hours of leading and directing projects and 35 hours of project management education."
 
Once the application has been approved, aspirants have up to twelve months in hand to take the multiple choice exam that comprises of 200-questions. This examination can be attempted up to three times in a year. Successful cracking of this certification exam showcases that the applicant is capable of navigating the different phases of project implementation and development in successful ways. While the exam fees are to the tune of $555 for non-PMI members, it’s $405 for members. It’s important to note that the processes related to Course preparation may run up the total bill. Additionally, some employers may agree to bear the cost of getting the certification for their employees.
 
So, why is it a significant decision to go the PMP route?
 
Matt Brosseau, CTO of Instant Alliance and Director of recruiting said, "Almost any software development or maintenance project is going to follow a project life cycle." This effectively means that regardless of the nature of the industry, it is important for projects to be completed under given constraints and circumstances.
 
Kirsten Lora, associated with Global Knowledge said, "It is a set of practical techniques to help identify the scope of work that needs to be done, and then an effective management of the efforts to make sure that the work is done correctly, on time, and within the budget that you have planned."
 
If you are still wondering what is in store for those who are currently finding themselves in the  roles of programmers and engineers, the overall idea is not to make a shift to the position of a project manager. By merely obtaining the certification, you will obviously not qualify automatically as a candidate for such an upper level role. However, if you happen to be in possession of the PMP certification, then it is understood that you are serious about long term career prospects, thereby placing yourself in an advantageous position. 
 
"Developing their experience and education skills so that they can be eligible for the PMP is a way to identify themselves as strong potentials for future leadership roles," Lora mentioned. In other words, the PMP Certification helps in establishing the candidate as a credible leader.
 
Some of the important soft skills that require careful consideration at this stage are communication, leadership, negotiation and so forth. Carter-Bey opines that these are the key skills required for the role of a project manager. "That person can be an engineer, a software developer, but as a project manager, those skills are important," he confirms.
 
A per Brosseau, for engineers and programmers looking for a job, the PMP certification acts as a signal to hiring managers that the applicant has attained a certain grasp of importance and function of projects. "Working to obtain additional certification and expanding on one's skill set is always a positive quality in a potential hire," he adds, "Though a PMP certification will in all likelihood not qualify someone for a seasoned project management role immediately, the desire to become a more well-rounded technologists certainly won't hurt anyone's chances in the job hunt."
 
Carter-Bey also threw light on the monetary risks undertaken by the companies across the various stages of their projects. A section of the Pulse of the Profession report published in 2014 by PMI reveals that for every billion dollars invested into a specific project, $109 million of the same is put at risk. Under the circumstances, companies on the brink on initiating complicated and long-drawn projects would prefer going ahead with certified candidates for mitigating their risks.
 

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