In the past decade or so, no other certification has consistently featured in top 10 certifications in the world as project management. In fact, project management certifications have become the most sought-after certifications that recruiters look for in a professional across the globe. In the face of competitive and complex service based business environment, anything and everything can be a project, and in this regard project management certifications will be high on the list of professionals worldwide.
There are many project management certifications for professionals to choose from, but then they face dilemma as to which project management certification to go for? The answer is very simple; it usually depends on your learning objective, recognition and salary remuneration. Below mentioned are top 10 project management certifications that are hugely in demand by professionals worldwide.
Project Management Professional (PMP)®:
Project Management Professional (PMP) is the most sought-after project management certification around the world. It is like the ‘gold standard’ among project management certifications. The certification imparts in-depth knowledge in handling of projects with planning, scheduling, controlling and monitoring and closing out the project. PMI® the parent organization continuously works with the enterprises and academia all over the world to keep the certification relevant to address changing business demands.
According to the PMI’s “Project Management Salary Survey 8th Edition”, PMP credential holders will earn nearly 17% more salary than their uncertified counterparts.
Having a PMP credential demonstrates that you can understand the global project management language. A PMP certification is widely-recognized and is not based on one specific methodology; professionals with PMP credential are more flexible and adaptable to different industries, market segments and geographic locations.
Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)®:
CAPM is an entry-level project management certification for managers with less experience in handling projects. It is a precursor to the PMP certification and is awarded by PMI. Than jumping directly to the PMP certification, CAPM acts as the stepping stone for the demanding / uncompromising PMP certification.
According to PMI’s Talent Gap Report, close to 16 million new project management jobs will be created by 2020 in 7 project intensive industries. There is clearly a huge demand for professionals with right project management certification.
PRINCE2 certifications by AXELOS are also widely-recognized project management certifications across the globe. They are a lot more popular in the UK and other European countries, but slowly are finding more takers for these certifications worldwide. PRINCE2 Certifications are divided into three certifications in PRINCE2 Foundation, PRINCE2 Practitioner and PRINCE2 Professional. Professionals with relevant experience either choose PRINCE2 Practitioner or PMP certification. PRINCE2 stands for Projects in Controlled Environments and has its own project management methodology than the general project management knowledge like PMP.
According to “PayScale”, the highest average annual salary for a PRINCE2 Practitioner professional can go up to ~USD 100,000 depending upon their experience.
CompTIA Project+ is an entry-level certification for professionals; this certification is on par with PMI’s CAPM certification and is not that rigorous project management certification. CompTIA has a good reputation as a certification provider across the globe and their Project+ certification is widely-recognized. The CompTIA Project+ certification demonstrates individual’s communication and business skills needed to lead and direct projects with confidence, and complete projects on time and stay within the budget.
Professionals opting for this certification should have one year experience in participating, managing and directing small or medium sized project. With enterprises increasingly requiring employees with project management skills, CompTIA Project+ certification will help you expand the scope of your project management career.
Master Project Manager (MPM)®:
The Master Project Manager (MPM) certification awarded by American Academy of Project Management (AAPM), which is a direct rival to the PMI’s PMP certification. The AAPM represents itself as a ‘board certification” and works on a professional licensure model. The whole certification process depends on the board review of participant’s resume and job experience. Professionals who meet the job experience can qualify to get a certification from AAPM programs and take AAPM-approved training classes for clearing their MPM exam.
Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)®:
Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) is a very popular project management certification which is showing a great exponential growth year-on-year. Enterprises around the world are embracing Agile methodologies to achieve more for less and to streamline processes. There is an increasing demand for IT professionals who have CSM credential and can handle projects in an Agile environment. For project managers who are starting their Scrum journey, not only CSM is an entry-level credential that validates your understanding of Scrum principles and values but also gives you in-depth knowledge of implementing Scrum on projects.
There are various Scrum master certifications available, but the best is Certified ScrumMaster provided by Scrum Alliance, a nonprofit organization offering the certification to encourage the adoption of Scrum practices across the globe. Currently there are close to 400,000 Certified ScrumMasters worldwide, and the number just keeps on growing – indicating the importance of Agile project management methodologies in enterprises today.
Certified Project Manager (CPM)®:
Certified Project Manager (CPM) is a widely-recognized project management certification in the Pacific Rim regions and is provided by International Association of Project and Program Management (IAPPM). The main objective of IAPPM is to promote professional project management and demonstrate efficient usage of resources such as money, time and people in a project. Some of the other IAPPM credentials include: Certified Project Professional (CPP); Certified Project Director (CPD); and the Certified International Project Auditor (CIPA).
This CPM certification is somewhere in between the MPM and PMP certification with regards to the no. of years experience, project hours etc. The CPM certification exam focuses more towards project management skills such as IT, marketing, integration, communications, finance, HR, risk, issue management and quality management.
Project Management in IT Security (PMITS):
IT security skills are quickly becoming the most required skills by recruiters across the globe. In the face of terrorist activities and cyber terrorism, Project Management in IT Security (PMITS) governed by the EC Council addresses information security of nations at large. The PMITS credential demonstrates a professional’s ability to manage unique requirements of IT security of an organization.
To get certified in PMITS, one has to have at least two years of work experience in the IT security department and an educational background that shows focus towards security. One can also opt for EC-Council training program before taking up the PMITS exam.
Professional in Project Management (PPM):
Professional in Project Management (PPM) is a mid-level credential awarded by The Global Association for Quality Management (GAQM). The certification clearly focuses on a broad-based project management knowledge that highlights resource allocation, adaptability to change, effective communication, clear direction and provide quality deliverables at minimal risk. The target audience for this PPM certification is mid-level to experienced project managers who oversee risk and crisis management and who are involved in daily management of projects.
Certified Project Director (CPD):
The Certified Project Director is a globally-recognized credential awarded by GAQM is for senior and experienced project management executives. Considered as one the prestigious level of project management certifications in the world, it demonstrates that project executives to acquire new skills to manage today’s complex projects and programs – by managing risks, scope, quality and budget. Project managers with this credential will be able handle project teams and multiple projects with ease and carefully direct them towards successful completion.
There is a great demand for project managers across the globe and recruiters are looking at interesting experiences and well-recognized certifications than their traditional qualifications while hiring. As a project manager, you can take your career to the next level with a project management certification that suits you the best. These top 10 project management certifications are in great demand and having them will separate you from the rest of your uncertified counterparts which helps to land you a plum project management job.