Now that we have decided that it is time for us to move forward in obtaining our Project Management Certification we need to see what types of certifications are available and see which one is best suited for me as an individual and which one(s) will best fit my career goals.
There are different flavors of Project Management and different entities that that offer some level of certification:
·        Many Universities offer “Project Management Certificates” that provide a great foundation to project management and many are highly recognized programs.  I will let you do the research on the many different programs.
·        There are “International” Project Management Certifications that are great if you are working with International companies.  Some examples are:
o   Prince2 – This is primary used in the UK by the government and commercial businesses
o   Australian Institute of Project Management – This certification is based on international best practices and used primarily in Australia
o   International Project Management Association – is geared towards national project management associations world-wide.  This Swiss organization has been around the longest in the project management field.
·        There are “specialized” types of project management or process management certifications which deal with different business sectors:
o   Agile – This is primarily for Software Development but in recent years has been adopted for many different types of projects. One of the most popular forms of Agile Project Management is SCRUM
The Agile Manifesto is as follows:
We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it. Through this work we have come to value: Individuals and interactions over processes and tools Working software over comprehensive documentation Customer collaboration over contract negotiation Responding to change over following a plan That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.”
o   ITIL –  ITIL stands for IT Information Library and as its name implies it is a set of process improvement best practices used to improve IT Service Management
o   There are other specialized certifications and forms of Project Management as well.
·        The most prevalent and widely recognized Project Management certification organization in the United States is the Project Management Institute (PMI).  They have several different Project Management Certification tracks that potential candidates can apply for:
o   Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) – This is a valuable entry – level certification for project practitioners.
o   Project Management Professional (PMP) – The most industry recognized certification for project managers.  Globally recognized, the PMP certification demonstrates experience, education and competency to manage and lead successful projects.
o   Program Management Professional (PgMP) – This certification recognizes the advanced experience and skill of program managers.  Globally recognized, the PgMP certification demonstrates proven competency to oversee multiple, related projects and their resources to achieve strategic business goals.
o   PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI – ACP) – Recognizes knowledge of agile principles, practices, tools and techniques across agile methodologies.
o   PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI – RMP) – Fills the need for a specialist role in project risk management.  Recognizes the expertise and competence in accessing and identifying risks, mitigating threats and capitalizing on opportunities.
o   PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI – SP) – Fills the need for a specialist role in project scheduling. Recognizes the expertise and competence to develop and maintain project schedules.
Now that we have looked at several options of project management certifications, I will focus on PMIs different certifications.  Join me next time for “The Ins and Outs of CAPM certification”