7 Easy steps to become a certified Project Management Professional (PMP)

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7 Easy steps to become a certified Project Management Professional (PMP)

PMP Certification is most sought credential in the industry irrespective of the domains. Here are 7 Steps to succeed to get PMP Certified.

Project Management Professional (PMP) certification is considered as one of the golden benchmarks in the Project Management field. As a result, the process of getting certified with PMP involves various steps. On earning PMP Certification, professionals are acknowledged for their acquired skills, in-depth understanding of project management and vast experience in handling projects. The certification is recognized universally, thereby benefitting the organization and individuals.

Here is the step-by-step process for earning the certification:

1: Read the credential handbook:

Project Management Institute (PMI) has issued a handbook designed specifically for certification. This handbook consists of the processes involved in taking the PMP exam and becoming a certified PMP. A 20-minute read lets individuals decide whether taking up the certification is meant for them.

2. Meet eligibility requirements:

Before proceeding towards the application, ensure that the eligibility requirements are met. The requirements include:

a. High school diploma or an associate degree or global equivalent, 5 years of non-overlapping professional experience in project management which is spent performing project-related tasks and 35 hours of formal education training for Project Management Professional certification, or

b. Bachelor's degree (or equivalent), 3 years of professional management experience that does not overlap and is spent on carrying out project-related tasks, and 35 hours of formal education training for PMP certification.

Only if these requirements are met an individual can proceed towards the application process for earning PMP credential.

3. Membership with PMI:

This step is not mandatory to be fulfilled. However, individuals can apply for membership with PMI by paying a certain amount. On becoming members of PMI, they are entitled for lesser examination and certification fees compared to the fees paid by non-members. The membership program includes being part of the elite community of project management professionals who can assist pursuers of the certification with their experience and knowledge of project management.

4. Application for PMP exam:

The certification portal within the PMI website takes you through the application form which has to be filled and sent for approval. On getting the confirmation letter, candidates can schedule their exam. It is recommended to schedule the exam 3 months away from the present date. As the testing is conducted by Thomson Prometric, there are chances where a candidate has to travel for quite a bit for taking up the exam. Therefore, it is good to plan the exam date well in advance.

5. Study hard:

Pursue the formal PMP Certification Training Course to gain a comprehensive understanding of the key elements - people, process and business environment. Besides the training course material, it is a must to go through the PMBOK Guide as the exam questions are chosen by referring to the guide. The studying process includes planning the day-wise schedule, dedicating a few hours in a day for PMP and commitment to achieve the credential.

6. Attempt the exam:

On the day of the exam, arrive an hour early to avoid unforeseen circumstances. Ensure to carry the identification form with the photo. Don’t skip the tutorial shown on the computer before the test. Take the exam and double-check your answers. Once candidates have completed the exam, preliminary results are shown by the testing center indicating whether the candidates have passed or failed.

7. Acquiring the certification:

On securing passing marks, candidates will receive their original certificate within 4-6 weeks. The certificate is valid for 3 years. At the end of the third year, candidates have to renew their certification by submitting proof of their dedication to the project management field.

Earning the certification itself demonstrates that the certified professional has acquired the skillset required for a project manager. With this certification, PMP certified professionals can even advance in their career within the current organization or other firms beyond the borders of their home country.