Guide to top project management certifications

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Project management isn’t for everyone. There’s pressure. There’s stress. A successful project manager should have a wide range of technical, interpersonal, and organizational skills. You should be able to lead, motivate, manage complexity, have excellent communication skills, be able to bring business and IT teams together, be detail and process oriented, and be adaptable and unflappable when things go wrong.

On the plus side, project management can be rewarding, especially when you deliver a project on time and under budget that provides a significant business boost to the organization.

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Project management is also one of those fields with long-term growth potential. According to the Project Management Institute’s (PMI) Job Growth and Talent Gap report, employers will need 87.7 million people working in project management roles by 2027, indicating a steady increase in the need for skilled and experienced project and program managers.

Project management isn’t for everyone. There’s pressure. There’s stress. A successful project manager should have a wide range of technical, interpersonal, and organizational skills. You should be able to lead, motivate, manage complexity, have excellent communication skills, be able to bring business and IT teams together, be detail and process oriented, and be adaptable and unflappable when things go wrong.

On the plus side, project management can be rewarding, especially when you deliver a project on time and under budget that provides a significant business boost to the organization.

project management thumb IDG

Download our guide to project management certifications. 

Project management is also one of those fields with long-term growth potential. According to the Project Management Institute’s (PMI) Job Growth and Talent Gap report, employers will need 87.7 million people working in project management roles by 2027, indicating a steady increase in the need for skilled and experienced project and program managers.

Why project management is important

There might have been a time when a company could have shrugged off a failed software update or lived with a project that came down with a bad case of scope creep. But no more. Companies are launching time-sensitive digital transformation projects in which the very survival of the company is at stake. That’s why the historically high failure rates for IT projects are no longer acceptable, and why project management has become so critical.

“As companies pursue digital transformation, IT departments must collaborate with more areas of the business than ever before,” according to the Robert Half 2019 Technology Salary Guide. “This trend is driven by a desire to create new products and services, enhance the customer experience and generate revenue. Shifts like these are creating challenges for technology leaders, including increased project volume and a critical shortage of technology workers to address it.”

And the very definition of a successful project is changing in light of these heightened business pressures. The classic project management failure scenario is a project that hits all the metrics of time and budget and scope, but flops in the end because the end users reject the new app. So, today, the bar for project management has been raised to go beyond simply getting the train into the station on time. A successful project also has to be well received by all stakeholders and deliver measurable business benefit.

No wonder that salaries for certified project managers are going through the roof. For example, in Global Knowledge’s list of 15 top paying certifications for 2019, Google Cloud Certified Professional Cloud Architect is tops at $139,529, followed closely by Project Management Professional (PMP) at $135,798 and Certified ScrumMaster (also a project management position) at $135,441.

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Insider Pro Guide to Project Management Certifications