Tuesday, June 13, 2017

PMP Protein: How To Prepare And Submit PMP Application

By Manas Das, PMP

What is PMP Certification?
The Project Management Professional (PMP®) is the most important industry-recognized certification for project managers. One can find PMPs leading projects in nearly every country and, unlike other certifications that focus on a particular geography or domain, the PMP credential is truly global.

The reach of this certification can be gauged from the fact that there are over 770,000 certified PMPs worldwide as of April, 2017. The main reference guide, the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®) guide, has over 5.5 million copies in circulation.

Figure – PMI Fact File, Source - PMI

Why Take the PMP Exam?
Preparing to take the PMP exam is a journey which can help someone expand himself and his abilities. In preparing for the exam, you have an opportunity to become a better project manager, not just pass the exam. This opportunity to learn is one of the best reasons to get the PMP certification. 

Requirements for PMP Certification
To take the exam, one must meet the requirement outlined by PMI®. The requirements are described in the below table.

Applying to take the Exam

Following are the steps to fill up your application. 
  • One must submit an application to PMI to take the exam. 
  • Applications may be submitted by mail or online. Suggest to submit online if possible since PMI’s response time is faster for e-submission. In addition, the online application process makes it easier to document the Project Management hours and experience while adhering to the application guidelines. 
  • While filling up application form, be careful and sincere in your filing. Pay close attention to what will be considered as project. Many confuse it with operations.
  • It is a good practice to check a few sample applications from successful PMPs and then fill up your own application. 
  • Before filling up online, take your time to do it locally – may be a spreadsheet, to have your experience notes with respect to the performance domains or the process groups. 
  • Once submitted it takes about a week time for the application to be approved. Sometimes, few applications require audit from PMI for more inputs for validating and approving the application. 
  • Post approval one will receive a notice authorizing to make an appointment to take the exam. 
  • There will be one year time from the date the authorization is received from PMI.

Membership and Exam Fee
PMI Membership Fee – $140 (PMI offers free PMBOK guide to members)
Exam Fee - $405 for PMI members and $555 for non-PMI members

PMP Certification credentials are valid for 3years from the data of passing the exam. One need 60 PDUs (Professional Development Units) to renew the credentials for next 3 years.

1 PDU is equivalent to 1hour time spent towards Project management contribution in form of writing blogs (like this one), attending or conducting training session etc.

What is the PMP Exam Like?
PMP exam includes 200 multiple choice questions with four answer choices per question. Table below breaks out the percentage of scored questions in the exam.

PMI has not published what it considers to be a passing score. But I would suggest that target to score above 80% to successfully get through. The questions are randomly generated from PMI database containing hundreds of questions. The questions may jump from topic to topic. There is no penalty for wrong answers. Hence, it’s advisable to answer all the questions.

Written by Manas Das: 
Manas Das is a Project Manager with Infosys Technologies Ltd, India. He can be contacted at manasdas82@gmail.com. His linkedin profile is at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/manas-das-0670a02b/ 

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