Friday, 24 March 2017

Factors that could affect Project Manager PMP salary



As with most jobs, there are many factors and criteria that can affect a PMP project manager’s salary. According to sites like Pay Scale, Glassdoor and the PMI website, there are several variables:

Years of Experience: A PMP certified project manager with five and ten years of experience will make an average of $25,000 (approx.) more than one who has been working under five years. Someone with more than ten years’ experience will, in turn, make an additional $15,000 (approx.)

Industry: As discussed above, some fields like technology and insurance/finance pay more than non-profit’s or travel industry project manager PMP positions.

Supply and Demand: As with any workforce skill set, there can be a glut in one area and a shortage in another. In India, for example, a sharp increase in the demand for PMP project manager’s means that professionals in the field there, are making 45 percent more than their counterparts who lack certification.

Geography inside the U.S.: Salary ranges are higher for PMP project manager’s in big cities and along the West and Northeast coasts, according to some popular websites. In Washington, D.C., PMP’s can make upwards of $130,000 a year.

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Thursday, 23 March 2017

Why Is “PMP certification” worth 20% hike in salary?




Why is it that this PMP certification carries such weight in organizations and companies? Our senior training faculty has to say this - “Project management is a way of doing things. It’s because it codifies what a project manager is and how a project manager works”. The PMP gives you a framework.

There are 5 phases of a project, which anyone with a PMP certification will know how to perform, irrespective of organization and industry he or she works for.

Initiating a project: The project manager should ideally play an active role in the initiation and prep work for any project before kick-off.

Planning: A PMP project manager will know how to take a critical look at the project from the beginning and throughout its lifecycle and request the appropriate resources such as people or equipment.

Executing: This is where the work begins and gets done. The project manager will guide the team through accomplishing project tasks and hitting milestones.

Controlling and monitoring: Change will affect every project. The PMP teaches project managers how to keep project deliverables on track and how to adjust course, if things change.

Closing: The project manager delivers the assets of a project to the stakeholders or clients, wraps up the budget and does any necessary follow-up.

Since PMP certification ensures that a project manager knows what needs to happen in each of these five phases to ensure consistent delivery of a project on time and on budget, the certification has earned its value, say our expert panel of trainers.

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Wednesday, 22 March 2017

“10 Common mistakes in Project Management”




To err is human and Project Managers are no different when it comes to making mistakes. However, knowing which mistakes are quite common might help you prevent a failure. Below are 10 common mistakes most often made by leaders and Project Managers that can put the success of your client’s project at risk.

1. Mismanaging Team Member Skill Sets 

Your team resources are crucial. Matching them to do the right work is critical for the success of a project. A good leader knows how to get the optimal results out of the people working for him (or her), and they know exactly how to best match team members’ skills and abilities with the task at hand. For example, it’s no longer enough to know that you have three web developers on your team that are “jack of all trades”. Knowing their strengths and weaknesses between database development, business layer coding or user interface (UI) scripting will allow you to optimize your team’s abilities.

2. Inexperienced Project Manager in-charge 

Taking charge of a project is hard. It’s even harder if the person in charge doesn’t have enough experience. For highly visible projects, projects with complex activities or projects with more than 10 team members; it’s best to have a Project Manager who is experienced in everything from status meetings to managing risks and expectations. Do not compromise on Project Manager experience when it comes to critical project activities. If the project at hand is a complex web development activity, do not assign a Project Manager with zero technical experience. In theory, a competent Project Manager should have the ability to execute across subject matters. In reality, successful Project Managers frequently have a background in a specific expertise.

3. Mismanaging Project Scope

Scope doesn’t always have to be set in stone. It does sometimes require compromise and project managers should have a scope management process in place for handling requests that change scope; and know and understand exactly how the request will impact everything from budget to schedule. A project manager then needs to make a call on whether or not the request can be accommodated. Contrary to popular belief, the most common issue in managing a project’s scope is NOT accepting unplanned requirements; it’s when project managers do not accurately communicate those new requirements via the project schedule and budget.

4. Poor Scheduling 

Project schedule are there for a reason, they help the project stay on course (and finish on time), and are one of the most crucial measures of project success. It also helps avoid the domino-effect, which results in project tasks falling behind. Project managers need to run a tight ship when it comes to scheduling, and ensure ALL project stakeholders are aware of the project timeline and any changes that occur. One of the most common “surprises” that cause issues on a project is when a client is unaware of scheduled deadlines, so be sure the project schedule is always front.

5. Ego Issues

Project managers should never have an ego that discourages team members from making suggestions. While the final call will always rest with the project manager, taking an approach of “my way or the highway” is dangerous and often results in valuable feedback from team members not being laid out on the table. It also appears condescending to the client, cultivates poor team morale, and over-values the role of the project manager. The project manager’s role is to ensure team members work optimally to achieve project objectives, not to be a “king” of others.

6. Underestimating Project Effort

Project managers have to ensure they remain realistic about what the project requires in order to prevent problems further down the line. Often times during planning activities, project managers are keen to appease their client and ensure there are no conflicts regarding the cost, schedule, or budget of a newly awarded project. This can sometimes lead to a “sunshine policy”, where new project managers are hesitant to accurately reflect the effort involved with project requirements. This type of underestimating is especially problematic, because the burden falls on team members to ensure work is performed faster or cheaper.

7. Letting Small Issues Evolve into Big Problems 

When project issues surface, they need to be addressed straight away. Whether it is a project requirement that was misunderstood by a team member, and requires re-work, or a mistake in the project budget; it is the job of the project manager to clearly address these issues (and own up to them) as they arise. Many projects fail because small issues turn in to huge problems, causing distrust among the client and project team. As soon as an issue rears its head, tackle it directly.

8. Not knowing when to ask for Help

If you are stuck as a project manager, ask for help. You do not need to know everything and being arrogant and not asking for help can put a project at serious risk. If it is technical or subject matter expertise you need assistance with, start by asking your team for advice. If you need assistance managing your client or project, reach out to a colleague or upper management. Most importantly, be honest and positive with your request and you will find others will respect your ability to ask for help.

9. Saying Yes to Everything 

As a project manager, you should be flexible and visibly eager to assist your client. But saying yes all the time is a bad habit that can ultimately lead to projects that spiral out of scope, and team members who are over worked. As a project manager you need to know when enough is enough, and most importantly, how to diplomatically reject client requests that do not allow for more time (or budget).

10. Ignoring Team Mistakes 

Mistakes happen, its human nature. As a project manager, it’s up to you to spot team member mistakes and deal with them immediately in a diplomatic, positive fashion. If the client is affected, inform them of how you plan on fixing the mistake, and (most importantly) how it will be prevented in the future. Failure to address team mistakes results in a culture where resources no longer care about quality, and this can poison a project.

As project managers, our highest priority is our client’s success. As such, this can sometimes lead to decision making that, while good intentioned, does not result in a well-run project or happy team resources. Being a project manager is no easy task and while mistakes will happen, knowing what the most common errors are could help you nip them in the bud before they derail your project.

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Tuesday, 21 March 2017

PMP Forums – Join online forums for help with your PMP Studies



Online forums are one of the best sources of information you have at your disposal today. You will have access to extremely valuable suggestions, opinions and information on these forums and they often provide you with specific examples and personal experiences which will help guide you in your quest for knowledge and instruction/s. Let’s look at some of the benefits….

Will help in understanding the PM (Project Management) Concept

Most of them might be wondering, why and how is it beneficial? It is because these online forums can actually help you prepare for your exam. If you are facing any issues understanding a specific project management concept, there could be someone on these online forums who can elaborate or explain it in such a way that could help you understand the concept better. Likely chances are that they ran into the same problem during the course of their own studies. This will save you a lot of time and hard work. The good thing about this is “instead of just memorizing” you will understand the concept.

Post questions on Specific PMP Exam Prep Topics and get Advice

You could use these internet forums in several ways to your advantage. The different methods you use will depend on the specific type of information you are looking for. This may include asking specific questions, for example: using a “search and scan” technique for additional or more detailed information or even soliciting advice on specific PMP Exam Prep topics. You will find many Project Managers (who are Project Management Professionals in their own right) are active participants in these types of forums. They are normally open to answering your specific questions, willing to provide you with information searching tips, and also enjoy sharing information from their own experiences to PMP certification.

Get answers to Specific PMP Exam info from different Project Managers

If you wish to post/ask a specific question concerning preparation for the exam, most online forums have an easy-to-follow process to submit your question. The best part about this is that you are most likely to receive answers from different Project Managers, who may offer a variety of perspectives and experiences. This will help you in selecting the best answer from the lot as it pertains to your specific question/situation.

“Search and Scan” – Targeting your specific PM Exam Question

For self-starters who prefer to do their own research, online forums can make this very easy. All or most of these online forums include a strong search engine for you to quickly “search and scan” the forum content to find the information that you are specifically looking for. Since you will be reviewing online forums specific to PMP Exam Prep, your search will be that much more targeted

Get advice on the best way to complete the PMP application process

Great thing about this online forums is that - you will find participants on these forums who have already finished the entire study process for the exam and/or PMP’s who have successfully passed the exam. One of the major reasons these PMPs spend their time on these forums is to help aspiring PMPs become successful so that they too can use these skills to give back to their local communities.

The PMP application process can be very tedious and time-consuming and is probably the most difficult part of the entire certification. Forum members will give advice on the best way to complete the process, sometimes by providing templates and tools to make this process easy for you. You will find expert advice on how to properly complete the PMP application process.

Preparing for the PMP Exam – Find some “Do’s and Don’ts”

Find advice on how to study for the PMP exam in online forums. There is a wealth of information on these forums about specific study tools such as PMP Exam Prep courses, books and guides, audio/visual aids, tips and tricks, and the all-important exam simulation practice questions. You will learn exactly what happens from the moment you walk into the exam room until you leave - from the point of view of someone who has actually been there. PMPs could also suggest the best time to take the exam, as well as letting you know the specific “Do’s” and “Don’ts” of effective exam preparation.

As you can see, there are many benefits to participating in PMP Exam Prep internet forums that will help you prepare for the exam, take the exam and successfully pass the exam in your first attempt by preparing yourself using above tips. You must be wondering as to - how can these forums can help you after you have successfully passed the exam and obtained your PMP certificate from the Project Management Institute (PMI)? By actively participating in these forums during the exam preparation stage, you would have established and grown your Project Management network base, which will lead you to many opportunities - both personal and professional growth in the discipline of Project Management.

Conclusion…

We are sure and it is obvious that by joining a PMP Exam Prep internet forum you will save both time and money, avoid frustration, and be thoroughly prepared for successfully passing the PMP Exam. Then it will be your turn as a PMP and an internet forum participant to pass on your knowledge and experience to future generations of aspiring Project Managers.

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Monday, 20 March 2017

"Six Sigma - Key benefits"




Six Sigma, originally developed by Motorola has become an all-around standard present in almost every large business organization. Six Sigma’s overall success has produced a new market wherein there is one more opportunity for career growth.

The fundamental reason why some organizations and individuals choose to pay and spend time to undergo such training will be the topic of this article. This write-up will help you take a knowledgeable decision and check to see if Six Sigma is something you wish to seriously consider for you or your company. After successful completion of training, your Six Sigma Certification could easily translate to a job promotion or a hike in salary.

Some of the key benefits that you should know…

# Appropriate use of resources: Enrolling with us in this training can show your employees how to utilize resources much better than before. This knowledge will help reduce the cost of operations, materials and saves time. This means a better performing workforce as well as increase in customer satisfaction.

# Boosts Employee Satisfaction: Six sigma training doubles employee confidence as they are trained on new skills that can be easily used and put together in the workplace. This also helps multiply their marketability.

# Increases company reputation: The verbal news of companies offering training to employees can dribble down from the managers down to the junior employees and ultimately to their peers. This could convert into more potential candidates willing to be a part of your workforce/organization.

# Increase in shareholder faith/confidence: This could translate to more confidence in shareholders, if a company that they partially own is doing great. This can lead to more budgetary allocations and is a win-win situation for everyone involved.

# Business alliances improve: Organizations that deal with other companies, who have implemented the Six Sigma program can certainly see the improved services of such companies. This can bolster them to have long term business relationships that can speak well of both companies. The six sigma tools and theories could rub off onto other companies which can lead them to follow suit by implementing Six Sigma training.

Conclusion...

While these key benefits can surely justify an investment in training, there are some things that you should always keep in mind. Experts in this field suggest that: Instead of having only black belt or master black belts in a company, one should have a variety of lower Six Sigma belts including Green and Yellow as well. While they are not as skilled as the black belts, the cost and time savings brought about by the involvement of the green and yellow belts can produce instant results that can translate to the above five key benefits defined in this write-up.

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Friday, 17 March 2017

Are you Eligible for the PMP Test? 7 FAQ’s Answered



The very first step towards PMP® Certification is certainly to determine when you are eligible for the PMP® Exam. As per PMP® Handbook the PMP® Certification eligibility requirements are:

·      A university degree plus 3 years (at least 4,500 hours) of project management experience
OR
·      A high school diploma plus 5 years (at least 7,500 hours) of project management experience; 

       AND 

       35 Contact Hours of project management education

Most PMP® Certification Aspirants cannot judge whether they are eligible for the PMP® Exam with the above two requirements as there are a lot of myths and misconceptions. This post aims to clear the roadblocks in your PMP® Certification journey

Common questions on PMP® Test eligibility

1.    I am not working as a Project Manager. Am I not qualified for the PMP® Test?
A.   You are absolutely eligible to take the PMP® Test. The fact is PMI does not limit the PMP® Certification for people titled with project manager, all professionals tasked with project management responsibilities overlooking the project from initiation to closing which meet the minimum number of hours/duration would satisfy the requirement.

2.    I need to submit details (e.g. project management plans) for the PMP® application.
A.   False. PMP® application is trust based. PMI assumes that all PMP® Certification Aspirants are telling the truth. PMI chooses a small portion of applicants for audit as a last resort to safeguard the quality of PMP® Certification.
Even when chosen for the PMI audit, there is no need to provide project details or documents as these may be confidential. PMI asks for only the signature of your supervisors/colleagues to verify your project experience.

3.    I am unemployed and I cannot apply for PMP® Certification.
A.   Not true. Every project management professional with at least 3 years totaling 4,500 hours (for degree holders) or 5 years totaling 7,500 hours gained over the past 8 years are eligible to take the PMP® Exam. Yet, if you are unemployed, you stand a higher chance to pass the PMP® Exam as you can devote more time and efforts into your PMP® Exam studies than your counterparts. Getting PMP® Certified will increase your chance to find a great job later on.

4.    Getting PMP® Certification is very expensive.
A.   PMP® Certification Aspirants can get PMP® Certified without breaking the bank as PMI does not require students to purchase expensive textbooks. It all depends on how well you spend your money wisely on PMP® Exam prep courses and resources.

5.    I need to take a project management class in a classroom in order to satisfy the 35 Contact Hour requirement.
A.   Not true. PMI allows PMP® Certification Aspirants to take classroom courses, online instructor-led courses or even pre-recording on-demand PMP® courses to fulfil the Contact Hour requirements. PMI recognizes the qualifications obtained through these means equally.

6.    PMI application Audits are difficult to pass.
A.   If you tell the truth in your PMP® Application, there is no need to fear about the PMP® Audit. However, it is highly recommended to contact your supervisors (in particular your previous supervisors if you have included working experience from your last jobs) while filling the PMP® application form to reach mutual agreement on your project hours.

7.    Student projects while studying at universities are valid working experience.
A.   False. PMI only considers project management experience from work. You will need a supervisor to validate your actual working experience for you. Your university professor cannot.


If you still have PMP® application questions not answered, please ask your question in the comment section below. We will answer them ASAP.

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Thursday, 16 March 2017

PMP Related Jobs and Careers



Project management is an exciting field. PMI-certified project managers are highly sought after and valued by employers, which is reflected in their compensation. According to PMI, by 2020, project management practitioners can expect to see almost 16 million new project management-related job added to the global workforce. Most of these new jobs are expected to crop up across seven primary industries: business services, construction, finance and insurance, information services, manufacturing, oil and gas, and utilities.

The most well-known career path, particularly for CAPMs and PMPs just beginning their careers, is that of project manager. However, you'll also find certified PMI professionals working as project coordinators, project schedulers, project management office directors, or managing projects for top-tier accounts. PMI-ACP certified practitioners frequently work as Scrum masters or agile project managers.

More experienced practitioners, such as PgMPs and PfMPs, often find themselves managing and directing multiple programs or developing and managing strategic corporate portfolios. PMI-PBA certification holders frequently work in policy planning or business analyst roles. Project management professionals interested in managing and reducing risk may be attracted to roles such as value-based engineering coordinators/project managers or regulatory implementation and compliance.  


Regardless of your area of interest or preferred industry sector, project management-related careers abound and the demand for PMI certified professionals is expected to remain strong. 

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