Project Management Institute
The Project Management Institute, or PMI, is the world’s leading not-for-profit professional organisation for project managers. Although it was founded in the United States at the Georgia Institute of Technology, the PMI has since become a large international organisation with branches even in South Africa.
Who is the PMI and what do they do?
The PMI is an organisation dedicated to the advancement of project management as a profession. Their initial concern when they started, over 40 years ago, was to “foster recognition of the need for professionalism in project management.”
They have since put forward unprecedented efforts to turn project management into a science and establish it as a profession in its own right, rather than just a tool used by professionals in different industries.
The PMI concentrates on a number of fields in their efforts to promote and improve the field of project management:
- They conduct industrial and academic research with the aim of advancing the science and practice of project management.
- They bring out a number of leading publications to facilitate the global growth of project management.
- They compiled, and continuously update, the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge handbook that contains all the set international standards and guidelines for project management.
- They offer training programmes for new and experienced professionals. This also includes seminars, conferences, and online training sessions.
- They offer professional certification to give working project managers the credentials needed to build their careers.
- They foster the development of professional co-operation by building international networks for PMI members to belong to and to benefit from.
- They do global advocacy for project management professionalism through establishing international standards for project management in both business and government around the world.
The PMI in South Africa
The PMI has chapters in over 100 different countries, including South Africa. There are 3 PMI branches in South Africa that comprise this local PMI chapter.
For the South African branches to function as a PMI chapter, each of these small branches need to get the PMI’s approval of their business plan, vision, and direction. They are essentially responsible for promoting the PMI’s vision and values at a local level, which means that they have to advance the profession of project management in South Africa.
The South African PMI chapters are situated in:
- Port Elizabeth
Being part of the PMI in South Africa means that you primarily interact with the local chapter and its members. This allows you to network with other PMI members in South Africa and to have access to PMI’s international resources via the local chapter.
Project Management Institute membership
The PMI does a lot of independent work to advance the project management industry. However, one of their biggest priorities is to contribute to the industry by helping professionals improve themselves and advance their careers. Becoming a member of the PMI means belonging to a large community of professionals in your field and benefiting from the PMI’s resources.
“Our professional resources and research empower more than 700 000 members, credential holders and volunteers in nearly every country in the world to enhance their careers, improve their organizations’ success and further mature the profession.” – PMI
What are the benefits of PMI membership?
Belonging to the PMI means benefiting from a well-established support network and being able to draw on a number of industry-related tools and resources.
Among PMI membership benefits are:
- Networking: You belong to a community of local and international professionals with plenty of opportunities for networking.
- Career development: The PMI allows you to access their job portal, take online career-development courses, and draw on career-orientated resources.
- Leadership opportunities: As part of the PMI, you can take on community and organisational leadership positions.
- Resources: You have access to updated editions of the PMBOK Guide, as well as webinars, newsletters, and research articles.
- Tools: You have access to customisable templates and tools developed by the PMI.
- Training: You can benefit from PMI training, online courses, and workshops.
- Discounts: You pay significantly less for PMI certification and training if you are a member.
- Credentials: Besides PMI certification such as PMP, PMI membership itself might act as a credential when applying for a project management job.