Top 7 Project Management Certifications in 2016

Project Management Certification might be the missing key on your resume to help land you on your dream job in Project Management. These certifications are beneficial to professionals as it will give them an edge in the competitive market. Project Management Institute (PMI) is headquartered in Philadelphia, and it is considered to be a market leader for management certification. Their certifications have set a standard in the Industry. PMI offers a total of 8 Certifications (PMP, CAPM, PMI-ACP, PMI-RMP, PgMP, PfMP, PMI-SP, PMI-PBA). There are few more certifications which are valued from CompTIA, AAPM, IAPPM, Axelos, IPMA and more.

Listed below are 7 Project Management Certifications that will help you in 2016:

Project Management Professional (PMP)

This certification is very popular in the management industry, and is the highest level of certification provided by PMI. This certification has become a benchmark for companies to appoint or promote project managers. There are professionals in almost 190 countries who are certified in PMP.

The PMP certification is a meticulous procedure, and it is intended for those who are highly experienced in the Project Management industry. The eligibility criteria for an aspirant to take PMP examination is 35 Contact Hours Certificate, which acts as a credential to show PMI that you have spent a minimum of 35 Hours in preparing for the PMP Examination. When all the documents are filled for the PMP Exam, PMI does an audit on random applicants. Refer the PMP Handbook for more details.

Project Management Professional Exam Structure

The PMP Exam is for 4 hours and consists of 200 Questions, among the questions there are 25 questions which will not be scored. The exam is based on the Project Management Body of Knowledge 5th Edition (PMBoK5).

PMP Certificate is valid only for 3 years , in order to renew it you need to earn Professional Development Units (PDUs) These show that you have not only practiced but also learned new things in Project Management. PMP Requires 60 PDUs to be earned in over 3 years.

The PMP Examination cost for PMI Member is USD405 and for non-member is USD555. The PMI membership cost is USD129, the membership grants you access to Job portal where Companies look for recruitment and people can look for job opportunities.

Certified Associate Project Manager (CAPM)

This certification is taken by those project managers who do not meet the eligibility criteria for PMP but want to get a head start in the Industry. CAPM also comes with an eligibility criteria which is much easier to meet. You can have a Secondary Degree or a High School education or have 1500 hours of leading/directing a project or a 23 Contact Hours Certificate.

The CAPM Exam is for 3 hours and has 150 questions in which there are 15 questions which are not scored. The exam is based on the PMBoK 5th Edition. For more information refer the CAPM Handbook. For the PMP Certification needs to renewed every 3 years, where as in CAPM the certification is valid only for 5 years. The Exam cost for a PMI Member is USD225 and for a Non-member is USD300.

Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) Project+.

This certification is provided by CompTIA which has around 13 certifications. This certification is suitable for professionals who work with Projects. There are over 19,000 certified professionals in CompTIA Project+. This exam covers knowledge on project life-cycle, roles and skills necessary for initiating a project and managing efficiently through its delivery date. You are required to have a minimum of 1 year of experience in managing / directing/ leading projects. The projects can vary from a small scale to a large scale.

CompTIA Project+ Exam Structure:

CompTIA Project+ exam duration is 90 minutes with 100 questions to attempt. The total score is out of 900, you are to score a minimum of 710. This ensures that you have the skill to successfully manage projects and business initiatives. The CompTIA Project+ exam voucher is for USD277.

Master Project Manager (MPM)

MPM is conducted by the American Academy of Project Management (AAPM). This exam can be taken by professionals who posses 3 or more years of project management experience. MPM has trained over 50,000 professionals across the globe. The MPM Exam cost USD300.

Projects IN Controlled Environment (PRINCE2)

Prince2 exam is mainly recognized by the United Kingdom Government. This is managed by Axelos has certified partners who conduct the exam across the globe like APMG, PEOPLECERT and more. This is a method to help you manage projects in a consistent framework.

PRINCE2 Exam Structure:

There are 2 levels of qualification PRINCE2 Foudation and PRINCE2 Practitioner. In the Foundation level you learn the basic term and principles of PRINCE2. Then in the Practitioner level you will learn how to apply PRINCE2 in projects. There is no eligibility criteria for PRINCE2 Foundation level certification, whereas for the PRINCE2 Practitioner level you need to be a PRINCE2 Foundation certified or a PMP certified. The cost of the exam varies depending on the provider from USD200 to USD500.

International Project Management Association (IPMA)

IPMA is a 4 level certification program. IPMA has trained over 250,000 professionals across the globe. The four levels are:

Level A for Certified Project Directors,

Level B for Certified Senior Project Manager,

Level C for Certified Project Manager and,

Level D for for Certified Project Management Associate.

Among the 4 level of certifications the IPMA level D certification is taken the most of the professionals. This is the first step for a professional in a project management role. The level D shows that the individual has the ability to understand and demonstrate the basics of project management. The 4 levels of IPMA certification (A, B, C & D) have their own eligibility criteria. The cost of the IPMA certification levels are from USD350 to USD1,990.

Choosing the right project management certificate can be a daunting task as there are multiple certifications available, each with its own advantage to help you boost your career. You can decide which certificate to take based on your position and your future goals.


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Stella Morey