Project Management Central

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Practice Areas: Agile, Career Development, Scrum
PMI-ACP vs. PMP as the "Standard Bearer" for certifications

With PMI heavily emphasizing agile project management, do we think that the PMI-ACP certification will replace the PMP as the "standard bearer" for PMI certifications? In other words, we will see in the next few years more people earn the PMI-ACP first, and then earn the PMP?
Also too, does one think that the requirements to earn the PMI-ACP will change to reflect agile project management importance?
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I have both. And I am working with the PMI to create all related to both certifications (as volunteer, one more in the group). Both are totally different. And the first mistake is to add Agile as an adjective to any related to project management. I mean, things like Agile project management does not exists. What exists is performing project management in the "PMI way" (PMBOK Guide) inside an environement using a practice like Agile where you can add tools that are not stated into the PMBOK. That is because the PMI-ACP and the next Practice Guide for Agile that will be delivered in september.

Obviously, the PMI-ACP designation is all things Agile. I view the PMP designation as geared towards the Waterfall methodology.

The PMP designation requires the certificate holder to understand a wide range of tools and techniques for managing projects in general. A seasoned professional will review these tools and techniques and guide the sponsors in selecting the appropriate ones to be applied to a specific project.

Just as the PMP should be able to determine if and when PERT is the better estimation technique, the seasoned professional should also be able to determine if SCRUM is the preferred approach to delivering business value. Whether it’s experience with the technology or an inability to fully articulate business requirements; the project’s complexity should drive the methodology decision. This places agile methodologies alongside the other tools and techniques a PM has at their disposal.

At this time experience with agile within the profession is still immature. Fortunately, I can rely upon the experience of those who have used the agile methodologies for many years, to help me in the learning curve. Until the majority of professionals have gained at least a firm foundation in Agile, a separate PMI-ACP designation signals comprehension of the non-waterfall world. It’s a way of saying the PMP has the additional knowledge of Agile. It is my hope the day will come when the PMP designation and the PMBOK framework covers waterfall AND the agile methodologies.

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