For Project Managers, Project Management Professional (PMP®) certification acts as a kind of industry benchmark. It helps create that much-needed aura of knowledge, experience and credibility for professionals to earn the trust of prospective employers and bag some of the most coveted jobs in the industry. What makes PMP® such a sought-after certification is that it is designed to strengthen the project management capabilities of professionals while helping them learn in greater depth and plug any gaps in their knowledge or approach.
Project Management Institute (PMI®) is a premier body, setting up industry standards for project management professionals around the world. PMI lays down the framework for defining processes and best practices to be followed by Project Managers in any industry. The basis for PMI’s project management framework’s the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®). It is the bible for aspiring and existing Project Managers, and is also the key to preparing for PMP certification exam.
What is Project Management?
Project management is a complex task, which requires bringing together a number of skills to ensure successful completion of a project.
What PMBOK is All About?
Professionals looking to earn PMP certification must know all about PMBOK. In all, 5 versions of PMBOK have been released by PMI so far. PMBOK 5th Edition is the latest one, which will also be the base of our further discussion. PMBOK defines five major processes and ten knowledge areas that encompass almost every aspect of project management as a specialized field.
Let’s take a look at the 5 major processes first:
Initiating: It is about processes that help to shape a new project, including any official approvals which may be needed to begin work on a new project.
Planning: It involves defining the objectives and scope of the project and charting out a workable plan of action to achieve such goals.
Executing: Execution includes processes which lead to accomplishing the work undertaken in the project as per its specific requirements.
Monitoring and Controlling: It is concerned with any mechanisms and processes employed for keeping track of ongoing progress and regulating the work processes as per requirements.
Closing: This includes processes which lead to formal closure of any and all activities and aspects of the project.
These core processes can and do form part of each of the knowledge areas as well.
Understanding Knowledge Areas:
This involves creating perfect coordination between different processes involved in the project, to which end a detailed plan of action may also be developed.
This involves creating Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) for detailing and managing what exactly is intended to be achieved through this project what lies outside its scope.
This part of management is concerned with time constraints and creation a work schedule to ensure completion of project stages and processes on time.
It concerns estimation, budgeting, funding and managing of costs to ensure that the project requirements are met within the approved budget.
It is a very critical area of project management dealing with processes and policies implemented for ensuring quality of deliverables.
Human Resource Management:
Organizing and managing the team working on a project is a critical task to ensure smooth functioning of processes at every stage of work.
This part involves creation an effective communications strategy to deliver requisite information to the team members at the right time and in the appropriate manner to avoid any form of interruptions due to miscommunications.
It is also critical to work out an objective risk assessment for every aspect of the project and make reassessments at every stage to make necessary changes in processes as and when required. Minimizing risks is essential to meeting final project objectives as planned.