Project management is all about planning, scheduling and budgeting. But you also need to take it forward with execution and reporting on those projects. You need to understand everything that the IT department does from hardware or OS upgrades to migrating to newer platforms and taking care of infrastructure needs. This requires a special set of skills. While you might already have those, it is a great idea to check out certification courses in the market to brush up existing skills and pick up new ones as we venture into 2020s.
And what better time to learn than now? To help you with that, we have a list of some of the best project management certifications you can pursue online. But before that, a primer on what it means to be a project manager and the merits of different certifications.
What Does It Mean To Be A Certified Project Manager
Project management professionals have the great gift of opportunities knocking on their door. Research has shown that by 2027, employers will be looking for 2.2 million new project-oriented roles. That is not something every industry offers.
In computer and information technology industries, project management is a systematic approach to develop software through various stages. The stages are initiating and planning the project, executing and controlling the project and ends with closing the project.
Employers look for certain traits and qualifications in a person who is to be at the helm of such processes. It is a greatly profitable gig that rightfully demands a certain level of education from the candidate. And being a certified project manager gives you the edge you need to qualify.
Do All Certifications Have The Same Value?
To begin with, there are different types of certifications provided by various organizations. However, within project management itself, there are three different types of credentials that are administered by the Project Management Institute or PMI. It is a not-for-profit membership association for program managers and project managers. The basic level is Certified Associate in Project Management or CAPM that allows you to work as a part of a project. And the third level and highest level is of a Program Management Professional or a PgMP which declares you competent enough to be the leader of a team.
Best Project Management Certifications Online
There are quite a few project management certifications and project management courses out there. But let’s take a look at some of the best project management certification courses that are available online.
ExpertRating: Online Project Management Certification
This certification by ExpertRating has got to be arguably the best certification on the market if you’re looking at project management mastery. It is designed for beginners and experienced managers. ExpertRating is an ISO 9001:2015 certified company. It offers courses and training to individuals in over 160 countries.
The course itself is a guide in dealing with the reality of managing projects at a great speed with efficiency. With tight deadlines and skimpy budgets, this job can be stressful. So a little extra expertise is exactly what you need. The course has been developed with the requirements of PMP certification in mind. You will receive course material and an exam for the price of the course. You will also get a certificate at the end of it. If you fail the exam, you can take it again for $10.
BrainSensei: PMP Certification Course
This is a course by BrainSensei from Japan which believes in learning through storytelling. This is an interactive course based on the idea that storytelling makes the course enjoyable, engaging and effective. And you can do it at your own pace.
It is based on animated stories that are based in a fictitious feudal Japan. The course has nine modules with self-assessment opportunities. You can take four practice exams with about 800 practice questions before you prepare for grading by the PMI. You will have 13 storyline challenges to complete and you get to recap each process with a summary of key points. There is also a Facebook group to ask questions and discuss ideas.
There is also a 100% pass guarantee and a money-back guarantee which shows the confidence that the company has. That’s always a good thing. This is a good course for those who nod off in a traditional classroom setup.
Coursera: UCI Project Management Professional Certificate
Coursera is an online platform that offers courses from universities and companies from across the globe. This particular course is offered by the continuing education division of the University of California, Irvine which is accredited to the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. It is for project managers with three to five years of experience to help them go beyond the basics of project management application.
It fulfills the educational requirements of PMI to get the Project Management Professional (PMP) course credentials. The course covers a range of topics from scheduling projects and selecting stakeholders to implementing work breakdown structure. You are required to pass the course and get at least a “C”. You must finish the requirements within 18 months of the starting date.
The course is for a duration of six months and has four modules. You can pay for each module as you get to it but if you buy all four right away you will get a discount. Once you finish it, you will get a certificate from UCI and 12 units of continuing education academic credit.
Project Management Institute: Project Management Basics
This is the official PMI online course for project management. The idea is to build project management skills and prepare for the certification exam. It has been validated by CAPM and PMP certification holders. During this course, you get to test your knowledge to check how much you have learned.
You can also prepare for the CAPM exam with the required study materials while covering the 23 hours needed for the exam. The course is designed for those who want to build skills and are looking to prepare for the CAPM exam.
The course is designed as 20-minute modules for 23 hours. It will help you build your project management vocabulary that works on a real-world project team. You will have access to exam prep questions in each module. Those who are preparing for the CAPM exam get a three-hour practice exam which is developed by PMPs and CAPMs. You will also get the free digital version of PMBOK Guide – Sixth Edition which will help you complete the course. You will also have access to tools that will keep track of your progress.
In Conclusion: Best Online Project Management Courses
There are several good project management courses offered by reliable companies and institutions across the world. Many of them offer ‘bundle’ courses with access to topics that go slightly over just PMP exam requirements. Such courses are of great advantage to professionals who are trying to up their game. You can also buy individual courses separately which is useful if you are trying to do this while managing a day job. Project managers with certifications do tend to earn higher than their counterparts. So get on with it.