PMP stands for Project Management Professional. It is a prestigious Project Management credential awarded by the Project Management Institute (PMI), and is often seen as the most important industry-recognised project management certification. PMP certification is recognised globally, and PMP certified project managers are in high demand.
The PMP credential is awarded to those who have the necessary educational background and experience, and have passed the PMP exam. Its value lies in the fact that it is a way of showing to employers that you have the skills, knowledge and experience to lead projects of any size to successful completion. The PMP is also not industry-specific, which means that it is relevant to project managers across all industries.
Who is PMP certification aimed at?
PMP certification is aimed at those who want to further their careers as project managers. It is particularly relevant to people who already have experience as project managers and would like to formalise this experience by becoming certified. Obtaining the PMP credential is also a good way to improve your marketability, credibility and earning potential as a project manager.
For those who do not yet have much experience in project management, or do not meet the minimum eligibility criteria for the PMP, there is the option of the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) credential, which has less stringent entry requirements. It is always possible to apply for the PMP later.
Requirements for the PMP credential:
In order to qualify for the PMP credential, you need to meet the minimum eligibility criteria, after which you need to apply to PMI to take the PMP exam, which you will need to pass before you can be certified. The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions.
The minimum eligibility requirements for entry to the PMP exam are:
- You must hold a secondary degree (high school diploma, associate’s degree, or the global equivalent), and have at least 5 years of project management experience with 7500 hours leading and directing projects, and 35 hours of project management education
- You must hold a four-year degree (bachelor’s degree or the global equivalent), and have at least 3 years of project management experience with 4500 hours leading and directing projects, and 35 hours of project management education
Further information about these and any other requirements can be found on PMI’s website.
Once you have obtained the PMP credential:
The PMP credential is one that needs to be maintained. What this means is that, after you have become PMP certified, you need to follow the PMI’s Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR) programme in order to keep your certification. If you do not meet the CCR, your PMP certification can be suspended.
For the PMP credential, the CCR requirements are that the PMP holder must earn 60 Professional Development Units (PDUS) in every three-year cycle. One PDU equates to roughly one hour of involvement in an activity that counts as a PDU. The purpose behind these requirements is to make sure that PMP holders remain up to date with current developments in project management and that the certification stays relevant. It is also a way to make sure that PMP certified project managers are seen as having updated and relevant knowledge and skills.