Projects have been around since the very earliest days of human civilisation. Take a look at some of the ancient architecture that still stands today – the Great Wall of China, the pyramids, the Parthenon and the Megalithic Temples of Malta. Each of these was built for a specific purpose at a time when it was needed. There would have been a chain of command to oversee the creation of these magnificent structures, as well as a set of resources to be used and a list of expectations to be met. Even by modern terms, that would constitute a project.
When initiating a project it is important to choose a project management method that is reliable and has a reputation for success as failed projects can cause massive losses to the organisation and in extreme cases, even result in the total collapse of the organisation. Below are some interesting, and some surprising, statistics relating to project management:
- The “Work Breakdown Structure” was first used by the US Department of Defence in 1962
- Poor requirements management is the cause of 47% of failed projects
- Roughly 10% of the total amount spent on projects can be attributed to waste
- When comparing Agile projects to projects without a specific method adopted, 52% of Project Managers state that the success rate of Agile projects is over 80%
- 47% of project workers consider unnecessary meetings to be the main culprit of wasted project resources
With projects being undertaken on a daily basis around the world, it is becoming increasingly important to earn a project management qualification to validate your ability to perform effectively and efficiently in your project role. This does not only apply to Project Managers but to anyone who works, or is looking to work, within a project environment.
The question asked by many aspiring, and even experienced, project management professionals is which project management qualification is the best to begin the road to certification: Agile Foundation or PRINCE2 Foundation? To answer this question you will need to gain a little insight into both project management methodologies in order to gauge which will be best suited to your project needs.
Agile Foundation Certification
The Agile Foundation certification is the first training step in the Agile project management methodology. The Agile Foundation qualification is perfect for both those who are looking to begin a career in an Agile project environment and those who are looking to validate their experience with an official Agile Foundation certification. The Agile method is known for its flexibility and is best used for projects where it is beneficial to complete the project’s product in stages of descending importance. Agile project management focuses on ensuring that each component of the product is completed within the time-frame allocated.
The Agile Foundation training course will teach you the basic fundamentals on how to approach a project when using the Agile project management method. During the Agile Foundation course you will learn about the Agile project management terminology, the Agile roles and responsibilities, the techniques that will be used at both Agile Foundation and Agile Practitioner levels, implementing the Agile project management method and many other aspects of the method that will be required of an Agile Project Manager and other Agile project workers. The Agile Foundation certification exam consists of a closed-book multiple-choice paper with a score of 50% required to pass the Agile Foundation exam. After passing your Agile Foundation exam you will have earned your official Agile Foundation certification and can then proceed to the Agile Practitioner training course if you wish to further your studies.
PRINCE2 Foundation Certification
When studying the PRINCE2 project management method there are two levels of qualification that can be achieved – the PRINCE2 Foundation certification and the PRINCE2 Practitioner certification. The first stage of PRINCE2 training is the PRINCE2 Foundation course as passing the PRINCE2 Foundation certification exam is a prerequisite to studying the PRINCE2 Practitioner course. You are not required to study both the PRINCE2 Foundation course and the PRINCE2 Practitioner course unless your goal is to become a Registered PRINCE2 Practitioner.
The PRINCE2 Foundation course is of course often aimed at Project Managers but it is also highly beneficial for anyone who works, or wants to work, on PRINCE2 projects in any role. The PRINCE2 Foundation course will teach you the PRINCE2 terminology, the PRINCE2 Principles, PRINCE2 Processes, PRINCE2 Themes and how to divide a project into manageable stages. The PRINCE2 method focuses on quality and ensuring that the project results in a product that meets the expectations of the customer. The PRINCE2 Foundation course will provide you with a working knowledge of the PRINCE2 method and this will be built upon if you progress to the PRINCE2 Practitioner training. To qualify you will need to pass the PRINCE2 Foundation exam which consists of a multiple-choice exam paper and requires a minimum of 50% to achieve a passing score. After passing the official PRINCE2 Foundation exam you will be awarded the PRINCE2 Foundation certification.
As with most cases involving project management methods, the final verdict is that personal preference plays an important part in determining whether to study the Agile Foundation course or the PRINCE2 Foundation course. Another important factor to consider is whether you will be more likely to work in an Agile or PRINCE2 project environment. With the recent emergence of the PRINCE2 Agile hybrid, you may want to study both as it has been proven that the two methods can be combined to produce a powerful project management approach. Whether you choose to study the Agile Foundation course or the PRINCE2 Foundation course, you will gain valuable knowledge and skills to enhance your career as a project management professional.
If you would like to view what you can expect from each course, find the Agile Foundation course and the PRINCE2 Foundation course.