Working as a project management professional is a demanding career that requires, among other things, keeping abreast of industry developments and best practices to advance in your career.
That is why we at ITonlinelearning are strong advocates for professionals investing in their careers, in this case, through specialist PRINCE2® training for project management careers.
In this blog post, let’s explore and understand just how useful a PRINCE2® project management certification is, and can be for someone in a project-focused role or someone interested in this career path.
Introduction to PRINCE2® and Its Relevance for Project Management Careers
In the 1980s, the British government recognised the need for a structured project management methodology.
The UK government assembled a team of experts, including project managers, academics, and industry leaders, to create a solution. Their goal was the creation of a methodology that brought order, consistency, and value to projects.
This effort led to PRINCE2®, a project management framework that defined roles, responsibilities, and provided a logical roadmap for projects of all sizes.
PRINCE2® combined British precision with adaptability and quickly gained global recognition.
This method continued to evolve, incorporating best practices, real-world feedback, and lessons learned. It became a global standard for project management best practice.
Today, PRINCE2® is used globally in projects of different sizes and complexity. Additionally, professionals certified in this method earn around 10% more than their non-certified counterparts.
For Project Management Careers
The PRINCE2® method is especially relevant for project management careers because it is a globally recognised standard.
Meaning if you have this certification, you, more than others without it, are better able to demonstrate your knowledge and skills in either managing projects or working on project teams – effectively to potential employers.
In addition, PRINCE2® helps to develop a common language and understanding of project management, which is useful when working with colleagues and stakeholders.
Understand Project Management: The What, Why and How
A PRINCE2® certification provides several professional advantages that can work to advance your career goals.
- Enhanced Employability: This certification is often a prerequisite for many project management roles, especially in IT, construction, engineering, and consulting industries.
- Career Advancement: With this qualification, you feel empowered to pursue higher-level project management roles, such as project manager, program manager, or project director. Employers prefer candidates with PRINCE2® certification for leadership positions, as it demonstrates their ability to manage projects according to best practices.
- Global Opportunities: Global Opportunities: PRINCE2® is recognized and implemented in numerous countries worldwide. This means that getting certified gives you the advantage of pursuing career opportunities globally, as the methodology is not limited to a specific industry or geographical location.
- Higher Earning Potential: Certified professionals tend to earn more than their non-certified counterparts because employers are willing to offer competitive compensation packages to people with demonstrated proficiency in the methodology.
- Project Success and Client Confidence: Clients have confidence in organisations and professionals who follow PRINCE2® principles due to the methodology’s focus on structure and clearly defined project management processes and approaches – resulting in improved client relationships.
PRINCE2® Qualifications: What Are the Types? And How Do They Differ?
Essentially, there are four types of qualifications worth your time; each tailored to different experience levels and the type of work you seek to do. These include:
- PRINCE2® Foundation: This entry-level qualification provides an introduction to the project management methodology. Suitable for anyone new to project management or wanting to learn more about the PRINCE2 approach.
- PRINCE2® Practitioner: This qualification is suited to practising project management professionals with some experience with the methodology. It provides a more in-depth understanding of the methodology and how to apply it in practice.
- PRINCE2® Agile Foundation: Provides a greater understanding of PRINCE2® governance requirements, Agile concepts such as Scrum and Kanban, and the integration of PRINCE2 and Agile working methods.
- PRINCE2® Agile Practitioner: Blends the structure, governance and control of PRINCE2® with well-known Agile methods, techniques and approaches that teach the implementation of an integrated approach to different projects.
Obtaining a PRINCE2® Qualification – What Is Involved?
To obtain the certification, we advise you to complete the required training through an accredited course and pass the required exam.
The study length for these courses is around three months! This does, however, depend on your circumstances and level of qualification.
Note: An option to extend course access to 12 months is available *terms and conditions apply*
Once the training course is complete, you must pass an official exam (administered by the accrediting body PeopleCert) to obtain your qualification.
The exam will test your knowledge and understanding of the PRINCE2® methodology and its application in practice. A minimum score must be achieved to pass the exam and obtain your qualification.
Validating Project Management Skills and Experience (the Little-Known Reasons It Matters)
Here are little-known reasons to validate your skills and experience through professional certifications that can turn out to matter a lot:
When you get certified, it’s not just your knowledge and skills that are validated but also your confidence. Knowing that you have the necessary skills and expertise to do your job well can give you a much-needed boost in confidence. This can be especially helpful when dealing with demanding clients or projects.
When working on a project with a team of people from different backgrounds, the ability to communicate effectively and collaborate efficiently matters greatly for project success. Having a common framework for project management, such as PRINCE2®, can help to make this process more manageable.
Project managers are often required to lead and motivate teams of people and to solve complex problems. Certification promotes skill acquisition and allows for developing strategies to help become an effective leader and problem-solver.
Studies have shown that certified professionals are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs, likely stemming from realising they possess the skills and knowledge necessary to do their jobs well and that their employers value them.
In project management, industry trends and best practices evolve rapidly. Ongoing professional development ensures that project managers stay updated with these trends, making them better equipped to tackle the challenges of managing projects in a dynamic environment.
Professional development activities often involve hands-on exercises, case studies, and real-world scenarios. These opportunities sharpen project management professionals – problem-solving skills by applying theoretical knowledge to practical situations.
PRINCE2® 7th Edition – What Is It, and How Has It Changed
The 7th edition of PRINCE2® is the latest update to the methodology, introducing some significant changes and improvements over the 6th edition.
These changes were made to reflect the evolving landscape of project management and to address the feedback and needs of practitioners.
1. Emphasis on Tailoring PRINCE2® To Suit the Needs of Different Projects
The previous editions were criticised for being too prescriptive and rigid, which made it challenging to apply the methodology to a wide range of projects. The 7th edition recognises the need for flexibility and provides guidance on how to tailor PRINCE2® to fit the specific requirements of each project.
2. Addition of New Principles and Themes
The 7th edition introduces four new principles:
- Continued Business Justification,
- Defined Roles and Responsibilities,
- Manage by Stages,
- Learn from Experience.
These principles help project managers make informed decisions, ensure accountability, manage projects in manageable stages, and learn from past experiences to improve future projects.
3. Stronger Focus on the Importance of the Business Case Throughout the Project Lifecycle.
The 7th edition emphasises the need for a well-defined business case, which outlines:
- The reasons
- And risks of the project
This is to assist project teams and stakeholders in making informed decisions and ensure projects remain aligned with the business objectives.
4. New Approach to Risk Management
Now referred to as the Risk Theme. This theme provides a systematic way of identifying, assessing, and managing risks throughout the project. It helps project professionals proactively identify potential issues and take appropriate actions to mitigate them.
Summarised, this edition includes:
- Integrated Elements: The 7th edition introduces a new integrated element called “People” alongside the existing elements of project context, principles, and practices.
- Specialist Aspects of Project Work: Both editions now include guidance on aspects of project work and detailed project management techniques not covered in the 6th edition.
- Project Scenarios: The 7th edition includes four project scenarios that demonstrate the practical application of PRINCE2® for different types of projects. The 6th edition did not provide any project scenarios.
- Diagrams: Both editions have updated charts, ensuring clarity and visual representation of concepts.
PRINCE2® Training and Certification: The Research-Backed Career Benefits
Here are six ways becoming certified pays off regarding project management careers in the U.K. (backed by job data and workplace research)
- Higher Earning Potential: In the United Kingdom, this certification is often considered a prerequisite for senior project management roles, which typically come with higher salaries. Project managers with PRINCE2® Practitioner certification can earn an average wage of £50,000 per year, while those without certification earn around £42,000 per year – Association for Project Management (APM).
- Improved Project Success Rates: The structured approach of this methodology also makes it a favourite among businesses and professionals. Research by AXELOS, the organisation behind PRINCE2®, found that 73% of U.K. companies reported improved project success rates after implementing PRINCE2® methodologies.
- Enhanced Leadership Skills: These qualifications teach essential leadership skills highly sought after in the job market. The U.K. Government’s Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA) recognises PRINCE2® as a critical competency for project managers, emphasising the importance of effective leadership in delivering successful projects.
- Networking Opportunities: The U.K. has a vibrant project management community which offers numerous networking opportunities for PRINCE2®-certified professionals. Joining these forums, attending industry events, and engaging in networking activities are worth it for expanding your professional network and gaining valuable insights from fellow professionals.
ITonlinelearning: Helping You Acquire PRINCE2® Skills, Knowledge and Qualifications
You should now better understand what PRINCE2® training entails and how gaining the skills and competency in this methodology can help improve your career and job prospects in project management.
Ready to update and upgrade your project management skills and know-how? Look no further than the training offered by ITonlinelearning.
Designed to teach and equip you with the high-value skills, knowledge, and confidence to excel in this field, our:
Project Management Career Programme (An excellent option for people looking to gain accredited qualifications and want help securing a project management job!)
Courses and qualifications – Accredited and UK employer-approved as the specialist qualifications they expect when hiring for project management roles.
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Learning with us will benefit you.
- Masterful Project Management: Our PRINCE2® training equips you with first-class project management skills. Learn to manage projects, allocate resources effectively, and mitigate project risks. Say goodbye to project headaches and hello to seamless execution!
- Increased Employability: More and more companies in the U.K. now require PRINCE2® certification from their project management staff. We will get you PRINCE2® certified, enhancing your employment prospects and increasing your chances of landing an ideal job.
- Consistent Approach: Implementing PRINCE2® in your organisation ensures a common, consistent approach to project management. It provides a structured framework for controlled project progress, business justification, and flexible decision-making. Get everyone on the same page and watch your projects succeed!
- Risk Management Mastery: Become a risk management guru With PRINCE2®. Learn how to identify, assess, and mitigate project risks effectively for smooth sailing from start to finish.