The Association for Project Management (APM), the UK member association of the International Project Management Association, has developed their own credential, The APM Registered Project Professional (RPP). With 17,500 individual and 500 corporate members, the APM is the largest professional body of its kind in Europe.
Based on “a broad understanding of project management” as defined in the APM Body of Knowledge, Fifth Edition, achievement of “successful outcomes through responsible leadership,” 35 hours of continuing professional development over the past 12 months, and adherence to the APM code of professional conduct, the RPP assesses both knowledge and experience across a range of different competencies. According to the APM web site, “Candidates will complete an online application and e-portfolio of evidence which includes:
- Short statements providing evidence of competence in the critical competences
- A project-based CV to support the statements of competence
- A record of CPD carried out in the previous 12 months
- Named referees who can confirm a candidate’s suitability
- Evidence of academic and professional qualifications
“The applications will be assessed and successful candidates will be invited to a 45 minute professional discussion,” presumably at their headquarters. This new credential is intended to “recognise all professionals across projects, programmes and portfolios including specialists,” and will be rolled out in early 2011. It’s not clear how the APM will market this new credential to “all professionals,” or to employers, but it joins a crowded field of certifications and credentials:
- Project Management Professional (PMP) from PMI. With over 400,000 credential holders word-wide, it is the most widely recognized project management credential
- CAPM, PgMP, PMP-SP, and PMI-RP, the “other” PMI credentials
- PRINCE2, from the Office of Government Commerce in the UK, in Foundation and Practitioner levels, with exams administered by the APM Group
- Project+, from CompTIA, the IT industry trade association
- Advanced Project Management Certification (APMC), from the International Institute for Learning (actually just a package of five online courses)
- Master Project Manager, from the American Academy of Project Managers (“Advanced standing is given to those with recognized degrees and MBAs, members of the Military, and Veterans with Project Management experience and training”)
- Certified Project Manager, from the International Association of Project and Program Management
I’ve only been able to find numbers of current credential holders from PMI, but that’s probably more a reflection of my luck in finding the data than anything else. Still, to paraphrase David Lowery, what the world needs now is another project management credential like I need a hole in my head.