Project Management

The Growth of the PMI-ACP Certification

Southern Alberta Chapter

Mike Griffiths is a consultant and trainer who help organizations improve performance through shared leadership, agility and (un)common sense. He maintains the blog

It is not often we get a chance to watch the growth of a new certification as it occurs. The PMP credential started in 1984 and will be marking its 30th birthday next year. It now has over half a million active credential holders, but it did not start like that--in the early years, the growth was very slow. The PRINCE2 credential was launched in 1996 and celebrated its one millionth exam taken in September of 2012. However, not everyone passes the PRINCE2 exam and not everyone who does pass maintains their credential--so that statistic is a little misleading and makes direct comparison between the PMP and PRINCE2 certifications problematic.

I have some better insights into the PMI-ACP because I worked on the steering committee, authored a book to help those studying for it and recently received data about the counts for the last 12 months. The PMI-ACP is the new Project Management Institute’s (PMI) Agile Certified Practitioner (ACP) credential. The credential was launched with a pilot program at the end of 2011 and then a formal launch in 2012.

For many people, PMI is not noted for its development or promotion of agile methods. As an agile practitioner myself, the PMI’s traditional style of project management was pretty much what I had been rebelling against for the last 20 years. However, PMI recruited a team of subject matter experts including the likes…

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"We cling to our own point of view, as though everything depended on it. Yet our opinions have no permanence; like autumn and winter, they gradually pass away."

- ChuangTzu