If you want to make a career out of project management, you can’t go wrong by investing in PMP certification – the most highly sought after qualification in this profession. Read on to find out exactly:
- What PMP stands for
- How it can help you
- What you can do to get PMP certification
What is PMP Certification?
PMP stands for Project Management Professional. It is a general project management credential issued by the Project Management Institute (PMI) to professionals working as project managers.
PMI’s certificates are designed to improve the general standard of project management as a profession. PMP certification consequently has strenuous exam entrance requirements to make sure only suitably skilled and experienced project managers are able to earn PMP credentials.
Why go for PMP Certification?
Although obtaining PMP certification does not in and of itself make you a better project manager, it does give you a valuable qualification. PMP certification will help you get better, higher-paying work more easily.
Why do certified professionals earn higher salaries?
As stated previously, certification does not entail any training that would make you more skilled at your job, so why is it such a significant qualification?
PMP certification validates your expertise and experience as a project management professional. It thus proves to employers that you are a highly-qualified project manager. Employers are consequently willing to pay large salaries in order to have proven project managers at the helm of their large and expensive projects.
Writing the PMP exam and getting certified
To get PMP certification you must qualify for, write, and pass the PMP project management exam.
|Here is some information on the particulars of the exam:|
|Exam format||1 exam (200 questions, 4 hours)|
For more information on the exact requirements of certification and all the rules and guidelines set out by the PMI, you can download the PMP Handbook for free here: PMP Handbook.
How to prepare for the PMP certification exam
As can be seen above, the PMP exam is very long. This means that it is also a very tough exam to write and that you will need to prepare sufficiently. You will have to study for the exam, and also prepare for the actual writing of the paper.
The PMP exam covers the content of the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide), a project management handbook published by the PMI.
The PMBOK Guide is the PMI’s definitive guide to professional project management and is used by project managers across the world. The PMBOK Guide contains all the set standards, guidelines, terminology, and practices of project management as defined by the PMI.
The content of the PMBOK Guide is divided into:
- The 5 Process Groups of project management
- The 10 Areas of Knowledge of project management
You can download the complete PMP exam content outline here: PMP Exam Content Outline
There are numerous books and study aids, besides the PMBOK Guide, that can help you pass your exam:
- PMP Exam Prep, Eighth Edition: Rita’s Course in a Book for Passing the PMP Exam, by Rita Mulcahy
- The PMP Exam Made Easy: Your 24-Hour Study Guide to Passing, by Ron Ponce and Christopher Scordo
- Head First PMP, by Jennifer Greene and Andrew Stellman
There are many more books you can also read to help you prepare for the exam. However, while books like these are all useful, you still need to read the PMBOK Guide at least once – twice if possible!
Exam preparation courses
You can enrol for a number of exam preparation courses or workshops to help you prepare for the PMP exam. The great thing about doing this is that it also contributes to the 35 hours of project management training you need for your exam application.
You can even enrol for online webinar classes (online videos) or a podcast training course.
Click here to view the PMP exam preparation course offered by Oxbridge Academy.
Before the actual exam, you will also need to practice writing the PMP exam itself and learn how to answer the specific questions.
The following book can help you with that:
- PMP Exam: Practice Test and Study Guide, by J. LeRoy Ward and Ginger Levin
You can also subscribe to online exam simulators for a monthly fee, such as:
There are also free mock exams you can use for preparation:
PMP exam example questions:
To give you an idea of what the exam will be like, here are a couple of example questions supplied by the PMI that you can go through:
Starting your journey
With a requirement of at least 3 years’ experience to write the exam, PMP certification might be a long way off in the future for you. So if you aren’t at that point in your career yet, or if you have just started out in project management, remember that everyone has to start somewhere.
You need to get your basic project management training; get an entry-level job; get intermediary certification; and build yourself up to that high-paying position through eventually writing your PMP exam.
Take a look at the following Oxbridge Academy project management courses that will help you get your career going in the right direction:
- Oxbridge Academy Certificate: Principles of Project Management
- Oxbridge Academy Skills Certificate: Project Management