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Regardless of the industry you work in, or aspire to have a career in, taking industry accredited qualifications is the ideal way to enhance your skills and knowledge, in order to take the next step in your career.

Project management is an illustrious career path with great growth potential, however, it is a career that is continuously evolving and changing, along with the methods it follows. Due to that, it is vital for project management professionals, and aspiring ones alike, to gain the right training, while also refreshing what knowledge they already have, to stay aligned with the practices taking place in the industry.

Whether you are only at the beginning of your project management career, or are simply looking to take the leap and seek a higher position, taking a professional qualification will undoubtedly help you showcase to employers that you are capable of leading projects with success.

This blog, therefore, compiles the best project management course to help set you apart from the competition, as well as equip you with the right knowledge and skills to excel.

PRINCE2 Qualifications

PRINCE2, PRojects IN Controlled Environments, is a popular project management methodology, pioneered by the UK Government in 1989 and is widely used across the world

With over a million registered practitioners, PRINCE2 is used by leading public and private sector companies, while for many project management roles it is a requirement, as it provides a common, consistent and controlled approach to managing projects.

Double accredited by PeopleCert and AXELOS, it really is no surprise why PRINCE2 is the preferred and most sought-after industry qualification for the training of project managers. Having one of these qualifications showcases your practical skills and professional knowledge to employers, helping increase your hiring potential.

PRINCE2 Foundation:

  • An entry-level qualification designed for those looking to launch their project management career, with no previous experience,
  • It introduces learners to the basic principles, themes and processes of the PRINCE2 method. 

PRINCE2 Practitioner:

  • Aimed towards seasoned professionals with industry experience,
  • Perhaps the most advanced project management qualification available,
  • It provides a more strategic, advanced understanding of how to apply the framework to projects of varied sizes and complexity levels,
  • After completing this qualification, you will be eligible to apply for the PRINCE2 Registered Practitioner status.

PRINCE2 Combined:

  • The perfect course for those with no prior experience or knowledge of working in a project management role, who still wish to become PRINCE2 Registered Practitioners, It
  • combines the PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner courses into one, enabling learners to complete both levels consecutively.

Association for Project Management (APM)

The Association for Project Management is the UK’s chartered project management body, that offers a wide range of qualifications to suit different levels of industry experience. 

The Project Fundamentals Qualification (PFQ):

  • Designed for individuals who are new to the industry, with little to no experience,
  • Provides an understanding of the basics of project management, with a greater focus on the profession’s principles. 

The Project Management Qualification (PMQ):

  • The ideal next step for those who hold the PFQ looking to forward their career,
  • Targets professionals that want to work in projects of all sizes, 
  • Requires some pre-existing project management knowledge or experience.

The Project Professional Qualification (PPQ):

  • Aimed at project management professionals looking to take the next step in their career, who already hold the PMQ
  • For those looking to become a full member of AMP and achieve the Chartered Project Professional status (ChPP),
  • Helps showcase your expertise and proficiency in project management,
  • Assesses your capability in delivering professional projects.

APM’s approach is based on two key resources: the Body of Knowledge (BoK) and the Competence framework. The APM BoK is essentially a guide which covers the contect, delivery, people and interfaces of projects in 57 varying topics. 

The Competence framework, on the other hand, revolves around detailed research and the knowledge experience project managers have. A clear set of standards is provided across three different domains: technical, behavioural and contextual, which constitute a total of 46 individual competencies. 

Professional in Project Management (PPM)

The Professional in Project Management Qualification is provided by the Global Association for Quality Management (GAQM) and it is the ideal qualification choice for mid-level management professionals wanting to climb the career ladder.

The course explores the essential aspects of project management, such as resource allocation and effective communication, as well as more enhanced concepts, including risk and crisis management. 

This qualification holds no prerequisites, however, the GAQM advises candidates to study the association’s materials that are available online, including an e-course, to prepare for the exam. The exam itself is a multiple-choice exam consisting of 150 questions, where a 75% score is required to pass. 

Nonetheless, is it important to be well-prepared for the qualification’s exam, as many in the industry consider it to be one of the more difficult project management courses to complete successfully. 

Qualifications from Project Management Institute (PMI)

A not-for-profit professional membership association for project and programme managers, the Project Management Institute helps empower and train project management professionals to excel in industry projects. Established in 1969, PMI currently has over 2.9 million professionals worldwide.

Providing courses for professionals at every stage of their career journey, with globally recognised standards, PMI provides future and current project managers with the tools and skills they need to succeed. It also assures employers that individuals who hold a qualification by the PMI are trained and qualified to manage projects of any nature. 

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM):

  • An entry-level course designed for less experienced learners seeking to gain practical industry experience,
  • For individuals with no experience, an initial course in Project Management Basics must be completed before taking on the CAPM to introduce them to the theories that will be explored in greater depth through the CAPM qualification. 

Project Management Professional (PMP):

  • Targeting professionals with years of experience in leading projects,
  • It recognises skilled project managers who have proven their project leadership experience and expertise in delivering successful projects,
  • The CAPM is the perfect stepping stone towards achieving the full Project Management Professional (PMP) qualification.

CompTIA Project+

Designed by CompTIA, the world’s leading tech association, the CompTIA Project+ qualification targets entry-level project managers or professionals working on smaller, less complex projects.

The qualification employs multiple frameworks, while it promotes information and feedback from government bodies, the IT industry, independent experts and research institutions, in order to deliver learners the fundamentals of project management. 

Through the course, aspiring project managers will learn how to manage a project’s cycle, document a project, coordinate with stakeholders and improve their communication skills. 

For those interested in enrolling on this course, at least one year’s worth of experience participating in small or medium sized projects is recommended, while the exam consists of 95 multiple-choice questions and requires a minimum score of 710, on a scale of 100 to 900, to successfully complete this qualification. 

Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)

In the world of project management, Agile and Scrum methodologies are used by many companies, especially by those in the tech industry. 

The Certified ScrumMaster qualification, conducted by the Scrum Alliance, a non-profit organisation which aims to change the world of work for the better, enabled project management professionals to better manage projects using the Scrum method. This allows for faster and more accurate communication between project team members, ultimately saving time and costs that could potentially accelerate a project’s completion. 

This course can lead to effective task prioritisation, with larger tasks being broken into more manageable chunks, helping therefore boost employee morale and productivity, through the framework’s streamlined communication and collaboration. 

To gain the qualification, the successful completion of a 35-question exam is expected, while the exam must be retaken every two years by certified professionals to renew their Scrum Alliance membership and keep their certification. 

When deciding which qualification to enrol in, it is vital for aspiring project management professionals to reflect on their goals, the time they can commit to their learning and the skills they are aiming to gain or enhance. Having a clear understanding of these will enable them to choose the right course for them and their professional aspirations. 

However, considering that the project management industry is an ever evolving one, with new methodologies and tools being continuously introduced, staying up-to-date with the latest training available is essential in increasing their hiring and earning potential. 

If you are interested in developing your project management career, enrol on a 100% online PRINCE2 qualification with Acacia Learning today.