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Top 9 Project Management Certifications To Advance in Your Career in 2020

Md Mohsin Ansari

As we have stepped into 2020, it’s important to know about the different project management certificates and courses that can help aspiring entrepreneurs in advancing their careers.


Since the field of project management is rapidly evolving, new certifications and courses that teach new tools and techniques are in great demand among candidates seeking project management jobs.


As a project manager, you must be well-equipped with what’s trending, what can help your team succeed, how to avoid common pitfalls, and how to complete the projects on time.


Achieving a project management experience and qualification can provide you with these many benefits:


Achieving a project management qualification can provide you with these many benefits:

  • Additional project management knowledge, skills, techniques, and tools
  • Enhances career development prospects
  • Get a wide benchmark of project management competence
  • Demonstrates your desire and commitment to learn
  • Become a better mentor
  • Project Management Value
  • Improve your organization’s project management method
  • Gain External recognition of your project management capability and a core level of embedded understanding
  • Project Management Salary 

If these benefits are not lucrative enough, check out these statistics captured from a PMI report on project management:

We’ve compiled the list of best of the project management certificates and their latest information in this article:



1. PMP Certification (Project Management Professional)

The PMP Certification is considered as a gold standard certification in project management jobs. Since it has been demanded and recognised by the majority of organisations across the world, PMP validates a candidate's competence at performing different roles as team leader or project manager. 

Average Cost:

  • US Resident: US $405.00
  • Non-US Resident: US $555.00

Why the PMP:

  • PMP certification salary in the U.S is 25% higher than those without it
  • CIO Magazine recognized PMP as one of the top management certificates
  • It facilitates real-world project management success

Who can take the PMP:

  • A four-year degree
  • 3-years experience in leading and directing projects
  • 35 hours of project management training or education


  • A high school diploma
  • An associate degree or any equivalent degree
  • 5-years experience in leading and directing projects
  • 35 hours of project management training or education


2. CAPM: Certified Associate in Project Management

Certified Associate in Project Management, offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) is the precursor of PMCs. To those professionals who lack a professional project management experience, the CAPM acts as a catalyst in bridging them to robust experiences.

CAPM is a great pick for professionals who don’t have a college degree and those candidates who want to achieve their PMP certification in steps.

Average Cost:

  • US Resident: US $225.00
  • Non-US Resident: US $300.00


Why the CPMP:

  • CPMP is a great choice for candidates who are interested in managing larger projects
  • With CPMP you can get entry-level project management jobs
  • It is recommended for professionals aiming to gain more responsibility by adding project management skills in their current role

Who can take the CPMP:

  • Enrolling for Project Management Basics (an online course by Project Management Course), that prepared the students for the certified associate in Project Management Exam.
  • Secondary Degree


  • A high school diploma
  • An associate degree or any equivalent degree
  • 5-years experience in leading and directing projects
  • 23 hours of project management training or education completed by the time you take the exam


3. CompTIA Project+ certification

CompTIA Project+ certification is one of the high-demand project management IT management certifications that give professionals, outside & inside of IT, a basic understanding of successful management of medium to small-sized projects.

CompTIA Project+ certification is designed for professionals who require management of small, less complex projects. CompTIA Project+ is more versatile than other similar certifications since it covers the essentials of project

Average Cost:

  • US $329.00

Why the CompTIA Project+:

  • It extensively summarises the properties of the project, roles and responsibilities, phases, schedules, and cost controls.
  • Predicts the possible impact of different influences and constraint variables throughout the project
  • Explains the risk of activities and strategies
  • Develops an understanding of the appropriate communication method that influences change control processes
  • Compare & contrast different project management tool

Who can take the CompTIA Project+:

  • At least 12 months of cumulative project management experience



  • One-year equivalent education of project lifecycle
  • Communication skills
  • Ability to manage resources and stakeholders
  • Project documentation


4. CMP: Certified Project Manager

Certified Project Manager Certificate is for those candidates who have a basic knowledge of project management, and are looking for opportunities to enrich those skills.

IAPM (International Association of Project Managers) is an international certification unit that offers CPM certification that provides a state-of-the-art experience and clear competitive advantages to the professionals who enroll.

It is specially designed for those candidates who seek to effectively implement different scales of projects and effectively manage it. A certified project manager is a representative of theoretical project management knowledge.

Average Cost:

Why take the CPM (Certified Project Manager):

  • IPCM validates contemporary best practices in project management
  • Instant & online (via LinkedIn) validation of certificate authenticity
  • Provides a highly rigorous baseline of knowledge, transferable baseline of skills and experience
  • Prepares the candidates to become critical thinkers, project leaders, innovators, and problem-solvers
  • Prepares the candidates to handle challenging projects

Who can take the PMP:

  • No requirements as such
  • There are a couple of workshops for self-study
  • Take a self-test once you feel prepared
  • Must achieve a 65 percent on the exam to pass


5. CSM: Certified Scrum Master

A certified Scrum Master helps the scrum team to perform at their highest best. Apart from increasing the efficiency of the teams, CSM also protects the teams from distractions, whether they be internal or external.

By utilizing the certification process, a Scrum certified person gets an understanding of team roles, artifacts, and events, and learns the Scrum framework as well.

Average Cost:

  • Approximately $995 to $1,395

Why take the CSM:

  • Expand your career opportunities in different industry sectors by adopting the most-demanded agile practices
  • Engage with leading agile practitioners who are committed to continuous improvement.
  • Demonstrate your determination and attainment of core knowledge of Scrum
  • Learn about the foundation of the scrum and also the scope of this role.

Who can take the CSM:

  • Any candidate who has a general understanding of Scrum and aiming to achieve IT management certification
  • A candidate who can assure regular in-person attendance in16-hour course which is taught by a Certified Scrum Trainer
  • Once the course is completed, the applicant will need to take the CSM test, consisting of 50 questions. He must answer at least 37 questions correctly within 60 minutes.
  • After passing the test, accept the CSM License Agreement to complete your Scrum Alliance membership


6. PRINCE2 Foundation/PRINCE2 Practitioner

PRINCE2 is split into two different levels of qualifications: PRINCE2 Foundation and PRINCE2 Practitioner.

The foundation level is designed to introduce candidates to the PRINCE2 principles, processes, and themes, and it teaches them to deliver projects within the stipulated time and budget, mitigate the perceived problems, and resolve the risks.

The Practitioner level of PRINCE2 teaches the candidates to apply the learnings and tailor PRINCE2 thoroughly to address the problems and requirement of a specific project scenario.

PRINCE2 Foundation course is a process-based course for providing candidates with effective project management knowledge, and enrich them with fundamental skills they need in order to become a successful project manager.

PR stands for Project, IN Controlled Environments. The course PRINCE2 is recognized as a completely scalable, and one of the most recent updates for professionals, which means it can also be customised to each project you undertake.

Average Cost:

  • PRINCE2 Foundation: US $200
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner: US $340

Why take the PRINCE2 Foundation/Practitioner:

  • To increase the project management skill, competencies of the organization
  • To learn ways to control any deviation from the actual plan
  • To assure that the project has a business justification
  • To embody only a proven and best practices in project management
  • To encourage formal recognition of project responsibilities
  • To add improved communication and flexibility
  • On completing PRINCE2 Foundation course, you can get entry-level project management jobs

Who can take the PRINCE2:

  • A candidate who has taken any one of these courses:
  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • IPMA certification.
  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
  • Or Any course of similar metric


7. APM: Associate in Project Management

As the name implies, the Associate in Project Management is mainly an entry-level certificate in the Project Management Framework. It is one of the most important and internationally recognized credential in the field of project management that allows the candidates to demonstrate that they have basic knowledge in the field.


APM conforms to the entry-level of project management is one of the most suitable certificates for candidates aspiring for entry-level project management jobs. This entry-level examination comprises a total of 50 MCQs, out of which a candidate needs to answer at least 35 correct (70%)  to qualify in the examination. 


Remember that the APM certificate will not take you to an administrative position, but only to an associate’s position.

Average Cost:

  • US $300

Why take the APM:

  • It’s a globally recognized credential for candidates entering as a project manager \
  • It demonstrates that the applicant has sufficient knowledge to work as an associate, if not the manager
  • It’s apt for candidates with limited knowledge

Who can take the APM:

  • No formal education required
  • No formal experience required
  • Enroll in an E-course is recommended before taking the actual exam


8. MPM: Master Project Manager:

The Master Project Manager, conducted by American Academy of Project Management, issues certificates to those applicants who meet their requirement of experience, education, industry knowledge, training, ethics, and also continuing education.

Other than the project manager, individuals who wish to gain technical and business project management qualities can also enroll for this certification.

Average Cost:

  • US $300

Why take the MPM:

  • Understand the usability and value of project management principles like initiating, planning, and executing
  • Understand the leadership skills
  • Learn about ways to avoid common pitfalls in managing complex projects
  • Learn about the art of decision making and creating solving of problems faced by project leaders when undertaking a complex decision model
  • Salary of MPM certified candidate is the same as PMP salary

Who can take the MPM:

  • A high school diploma
  • An associate degree or any equivalent degree
  • 5-years experience in leading and directing projects
  • 35 hours of project management training or education

9. PPM: Professional in Project Manager

Professional in Project Manager certification course, consists of different project management modules including the modules on project executions, planning, controls, and completion.

The core focus of Professional in Project Manager course is helping the candidate acquire key trends in project managing the learning about the demands of a project manager.

Professional in Project Manager Certification comes useful for developing project measures, scheduling projects, and creating approaches of project management.

Average Cost:

  • US $300

Why take the PPM:

  • It’s a globally recognized credential for candidates aiming to enrich their project management skills
  • It leads candidates to the assimilation of new techniques in project management
  • It helps the candidate acquire recognition as a professional and boosts their self-confidence
  • Covers aspects of construction certifications

Who can take the PPM:

  • Mandatory E-course Completion
  • An associate degree or any equivalent degree
  • At least one year of experience in leading and directing projects
  • 23 hours of project management training or education


Final Words

There you have it - the complete list of best project management certificates that can help you advance your career as a project manager. Use this list to understand what you can expect with these courses, whether or not you’ve the prerequisite to take them, and how much you’d need to spend in order to acquire the certification.


With these certifications, I’m sure you’ll enrich your skills, benchmark your success rate, and also get an understanding of how your competitors are using different project management tools and techniques.


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