PMI Publishes Navigating Complexity: A Practice Guide

Navigating ComplexityLast week, PMI announced availability of a new publication on managing complexity in projects, programs, and project portfolios. Called “Navigating Complexity: A Practice Guide,” it is now available for download in PDF format at no cost, for a limited time. The print version will be available in mid-March.

The Guide organizes the causes of complexity into three categories, including human behavior, system behavior, and ambiguity. The need to align people, programs, and projects to manage complexity is addressed through organizational support structures, and useful practices in four areas: scope, communications, stakeholders, and risk. Principles are demonstrated via several scenarios, each with suggested actions. Key considerations in developing, implementing, and managing an action plan are included. An extensive literature review is included as an appendix, along with a glossary.

The PDF file is 113 pages, and includes an assessment questionnaire. The questionnaire is available as a separate download, along with a companion resource gap analysis and skills assessment. Additional resources, including white papers and case studies, are available on the same complexity program page as the downloadable files.

Software Extension to the PMBOK Now Available

Software ExtensionThe Software Extension to the PMBOK Guide Fifth Edition is now available. According to the PMI web site, “This standard, developed by PMI jointly with IEEE Computer Society, provides guidance on the management of software development projects, and bridges the gap between the traditional, predictive approach described in the PMBOK® Guide and iterative approaches such as agile more commonly used in software development.”

“This groundbreaking work … draws upon the wisdom of programmers, IT professionals, and working project managers from around the globe. Designed to be used in tandem with the latest edition of the PMBOK® Guide, this comprehensive volume closely follows the PMBOK® Guide’s approach to style, structure, and naming, while providing readers a balanced view of methods, tools, and techniques for managing software projects across the life cycle continuum from highly predictive life cycles to highly adaptive life cycles.”

If you are a current PMI member, you can download a complimentary PDF copy here. Scroll down to the PMI Standards Extensions section and expand the section related to the Software Extension. If you’re not a member, or you just want a paper copy, you can order it here. The price for non-members is $52.95. PMI members get a 20% discount.

PMI Announces a New Professional Credential for Portfolio Managers

PMI has announced that they are developing a new professional credential: Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP).  As you might guess from the name, this certification is directed toward project portfolio managers. For more information on eligibility, check the PfMP Certification page on the PMI web site.

PMI says that the PfMP Exam Content Outline will be made available later this month, and they expect that the pilot test will be available late in 4Q13.  At a guess, the Standard for Portfolio Management, Third Edition will likely be a key resource.  However, I expect that PMI will list a number of other references.

Note that nearly four years after it was introduced, there are only 939 active holders of the Program Management Professional (PgMP) credential.  I don’t know how many portfolio managers PMI expects to attract with this credential, but I’ll bet the initial interest will come almost entirely from people who already hold two or more PMI certifications.  I’ll report on this again later in the year, as news becomes available.