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Whitley Kerr - PMCertDC

What is the Project Management Professional (PMP)

And How Do I Earn It?

This is, believe it or not, one of the biggest questions I get when I am at a networking events and wear my “PMCertDC PMP Training” shirt. Buckle up, I am going to explain it all here!

First, what does it mean for you? As a certified practitioner, you can demand an average 20% more in salary from being certified.

While the tech industry has already embraced certification, This is especially true in the construction field as they are the most impacted by traditional project management (aka Waterfall) yet seem to be the latest to really start demanding certification.

And why wouldn’t they? Million dollar projects going over budget and behind schedule can be disastrous.

In the United States, a certified practitioner earns an average of $108,000 per year. If you are reading this from Australia, you command an average salary of $134,658 USD per year! Either way, you are in demand and will almost always be ahead of your peers in the job search arena.

So what does getting certified entail? I will begin this answer with what I tell my students. “If it were cheap and easy, everyone would be a PMP. But then it wouldn’t mean anything!”.

The first step in getting your PMP is to determine if you qualify. If not, you can learn about the entry to mid-level CAPM certification here. To qualify, you will need to have the following:

For those with a Bachelor’s Degree or higher, it requires a minimum of 36 months or 4,500 hours or more of leading or directing a project plus the 35 contact hours of project management education (which you attain through our courses).

For those with less than a Bachelor’s Degree, it requires a minimum of 60 months or 7,500 hours of leading or directing a project plus the 35 contact hours of project management education.

The second step is to garner the required 35 contact hours of project management education. Some may get some of these hours through specific college courses.

But even those who do will usually sit for an exam preparation “boot camp” similar to those offered by us in-class or online at pmcertdc.com. These courses will more than satisfy the 35 hours needed. (For more information on how you should choose the right training company, click here.) Plus our boot camps will teach you exactly what you need to know to pass this very tough examination.

The third step is to apply and pay for the exam on the PMI website. The costs vary depending on whether or not you choose to be a member of PMI or not.

Hint: There are many benefits to becoming a PMI member. But if you are paying out of pocket for the examination, the first year membership will more than pay for itself as you will see below. The PMI membership for the first year is $129. The examination fee for members is $405 whereas non-members pay $555.

With these costs in mind, it is imperative that you choose the correct training company that will get you a pass on the first attempt!

The final steps are to pass the examination and to maintain the credential by earning 60 professional development units (PDU’s) every three years. This is not a test you ever want to have to retake.

The test is four hours in length, taken at a testing center (usually ProMetric) and consists of 200 multiple choice questions where 175 are scored. It is all multiple choice, however many of the questions are situational.

To learn more, I urge you to take our course. Email me at nathan.kerr@pmcertdc.com or call (443) 487-6697 or click the blue button below.

We have three convenient locations in Urbana/Frederick, MD, Tysons, VA, or Washington D.C. Additionally, all of our in-class courses are also offered live online at www.pmcertdc.com.

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