Most Popular Project Management Certifications including Agile.
Learn the differences between traditional and agile project management and discover what is the right certification for you.
Do you want to become the best project manager you know? An excellent project manager can make a huge difference in an organization as it contributes immensely to its core structure. Since technology and businesses across the world are incessantly developing, there is a need for qualified project managers that can harness the power of modern technological advancements. To do that successfully, you must have skills you can apply and benefit from. The best way to become a project manager is to get certified. In this post, we have shared some of the best project management certifications you should consider.
Why should I get certified as a Project Manager?
Although project managers go through vigorous training modules before taking on a project, the modules don’t help them maneuver or handle a wide variety of challenges they will eventually face in their industry. These project management certifications allow project managers to handle the workforce and drive them to achieve the set milestones. They are well-acquainted with the terminologies, potential risks, challenges and can handle the pressure of working through laborious tasks within the life cycle of a project.
Which are the best Project Management Certifications?
We have created a list of the most common certifications, from the traditional project management or waterfall; to the agile methodologies. But first, we want to make something clear for the beginners:
1) Waterfall is the traditional project management style that focuses mainly in a comprehensive plan). It is called waterfall because if we visualize the structure of the project we will see four main phases (initiation, planification, execution and closure) and we only start one once the previous phase is finished.
2) Agile is not scrum, scrum is a framework that follows the agile manifesto (the main principles that define agile), like other frameworks such as Kanban, Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) or Extreme Programming (XP).
3) There is not such a thing like the best certification, but the best for you, according to the industry you work in or the size of your team.
We recommend you to have an overview of all of them to understand what is best for you and to understand what is demanded in the market. Once you understand the whole picture, you can focus on one.
Here the list of the most popular certifications:
Starting with the traditional ones…
PMP (Project Management Professional from Project Management Institute (PMI)
Accredited with the Project Management Institute, PMP is a challenging course that helps project managers identify loopholes in a project. You will require a minimum experience of 3 years in project management. But that is not all, also 5 years of practical experience and at least 35 hours of education in project management.
If you have all the requirements demanded, then you can apply to take the exam. In total you will need a budget of around $500.
The PMI is an american organization and therefore this certification is quite international and specially popular in the United States.
PRINCE2 (Projects IN Controlled Environments)
This advanced tier degree in project management will make you a highly reputed certified project manager in the concerned field. PRINCE2 certification requires the candidate to have any of the IPMA Level A to B certifications, CPMA certification, PMP certification and must have completed the PRINCE2 foundation course.
Price is the most popular certification in the United Kingdom and has an approximate cost of $900.
IPMA (International Project Management Association)
If you are based in Europe, you might want to check the International Project Management Association. IPMA has spread from Europe to Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Australia, and North and South America.
IPMA offers a four-level competence building model – Level A, B, C, D. The basic level is D, also called Certified Project Management Associate. Level C is called Certified Project Manager. Level B is another Project Manager certification that denotes you have been managing complex projects for at least five years. Level A certification is to become a Certified Project Director.
The prices vary depending on the certification at a range in between €500 and €2.500.
Let’s get more agile…
If we talk about Agile methodologies, here a we have a list of the most popular ones. Keep in mind that an official certification for Kanban or OKRs does not exist, as it is not regulated for a specific institution that offers an exam or a certification. However, you can always get a diploma is academies like e-Bloom after finishing a course.
PMI-ACP (Agile Project Management)
ACP or Agile Certified Practitioner is a project management certification that is accredited also with PMI. It follows the Agile concepts to help you learn how to identify core problems in a project and eliminate them using the given resources. You will need to have a high school diploma, associate degree, or equivalent experience. You must also have prior experience in agile work teams.
You can do it in 24 hours at a cost of around $500.
In this case, we can get certified in Scrum in two different institutions: Scrum.org or ScrumAlliance.org. Both organizations offer different certifications for different levels. Starting with the CSM (from Scrum Alliance) or PSM (from Scrum.org) to learn the Scrum master fundamentals. The other certifications are more specific as Product Owner or Scrum Developer.
In any case, we encourage you to start from the beginning. Learn the fundamentals of Scrum and how to get prepared for the exam with Scrum.org with our online courses that you can learn on the go and take the exam for €150.
So… Where to start?
That’s the most crucial question. You need to take the best foot forward in your journey to become a qualified project manager. To help you with that, we have prepared an introductory course called “From Waterfall to Agile” to understand the background of Project Management, why we do work with Agile methodologies nowadays and what is best for you.
We highly recommend you take on these certifications through our course and get things rolling.
Have questions? Shoot them down in the comments section! Don’t forget to check out other informative posts on the blog!