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Top 10 Project Manager Consultant Certifications

This article provides an overview of the top project manager consultant certifications, outlining the benefits and requirements for each.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 17 min read

Certifications are important for a project manager consultant in the job market because they demonstrate a level of expertise and commitment to the profession. Certification shows potential employers that the consultant has taken the time to acquire additional knowledge and skills through formal training or self-study. This can be particularly important when competing against other candidates who may not have invested in professional development. Certifications also provide recognition of experience, expertise, and dedication to the profession, which can help project managers stand out from their peers. Finally, certifications often come with access to exclusive resources, such as industry contacts and discounts on conferences and events, which can prove invaluable to any project manager’s career.

This article reviews some of the top certifications for Project Manager Consultants and explains how they can contribute to a project manager consultant's career.

What are Project Manager Consultant Certifications?

Project Manager Consultant Certification is a professional certification program designed to help individuals develop the knowledge and skills necessary to become successful project managers. The program provides an in-depth understanding of the principles and practices of modern project management, including risk assessment, budgeting, scheduling, resource allocation, and team management. It also covers topics such as client relations, communication strategies, change management, conflict resolution, and process improvement.

Project Manager Consultant Certification can be beneficial for those who would like to gain a better understanding of the principles and practices of project management. By completing this certification program, individuals will have the ability to lead projects more effectively and efficiently. This certification can help professionals demonstrate their commitment to excellence in project management by showing they have a comprehensive knowledge base on which to draw upon when managing projects. Additionally, having this certification can make professionals more attractive candidates for job opportunities in the field of project management. Finally, this certification can give professionals an edge over their competition when it comes time to apply for promotions or salary increases.

Pro Tip: Make sure you research the different project manager consultant certifications before making your decision. Look for certifications that recognize the specific skills and experience you have, as well as those that are applicable to the industry or sector you are interested in. Additionally, read reviews from current or past participants to get an idea of the quality of the certification program.

Related: What does a Project Manager Consultant do?

Top 10 Project Manager Consultant Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Project Manager Consultants today.

1. Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification

Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification is a globally recognized certification for professionals who want to demonstrate their expertise in project management. It is awarded by the Project Management Institute (PMI), which sets the standards for project management and provides resources, education and training to help individuals become certified.

To get PMP certification, you must have a minimum of five years of experience leading and directing projects, as well as 35 hours of formal project management education. You must then pass the PMP exam, which consists of 200 multiple-choice questions that cover topics such as initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing projects. The exam takes four hours to complete.

The cost of obtaining PMP certification varies depending on your membership status with the PMI. If you are not a member of the PMI, it will cost $555 USD to take the exam; if you are a member, it will cost $405 USD. Additionally, there may be additional costs associated with preparation courses or materials needed to prepare for the exam.

In total, from start to finish it can take anywhere from six months to one year to obtain your PMP certification depending on how quickly you can complete all requirements for eligibility and pass the exam.

2. Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) Certification

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that recognizes an individual’s understanding of the fundamental knowledge, processes, and terminology used in project management. The CAPM certification is designed for professionals who are new to project management or those who want to demonstrate their commitment to the profession.

The CAPM exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within three hours. To become certified, an individual must have at least 1,500 hours of project experience or 23 hours of project management education.

To get the CAPM certification, individuals must first register with PMI and pay the registration fee. Once registered, they can take the exam at any authorized testing center. After passing the exam, they will receive their certificate from PMI.

The cost to take the CAPM exam varies depending on whether you are a PMI member or non-member. For members, it costs $225 USD while for non-members it costs $300 USD.

3. PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner Certification

PRINCE2 (Projects in Controlled Environments) is a widely-used project management methodology, developed by the UK government’s Office of Government Commerce (OGC). It provides a structured approach to managing projects, which helps organizations plan and control their projects more effectively.

The PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner Certification is an internationally recognized qualification that demonstrates your ability to apply and tailor the PRINCE2 methodology to manage successful projects. The certification consists of two levels: Foundation and Practitioner.

The Foundation level is designed to provide you with an understanding of the principles and terminology used in the PRINCE2 method. It also ensures that you can act as an informed member of a project team using the method within a project environment supporting PRINCE2.

The Practitioner level builds on the knowledge gained at Foundation level by providing you with an understanding of how to apply and tailor the method in a scenario situation. The Practitioner exam requires you to demonstrate your ability to apply PRINCE2 principles in a given situation.

It typically takes around 6-8 weeks to prepare for both exams, depending on your existing knowledge and experience with project management methods such as PRINCE2. To get certified, you need to pass both exams successfully.

The cost for taking both exams depends on where you take them from – different providers offer different prices for training courses and exam fees. Generally speaking, it will cost around £500 - £1000 for both exams combined.

4. Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) Certification

The Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that recognizes an individual’s expertise in using agile practices in their project management work. This certification is designed to help professionals demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of agile principles, practices, tools, and techniques.

To become certified as a PMI-ACP, you must have at least 2,000 hours of general project management experience within the past 5 years and 1,500 hours of agile project management experience within the past 3 years. You must also complete 21 contact hours of training in agile practices.

Once you meet these requirements, you can apply for the PMI-ACP exam. The exam consists of 120 multiple-choice questions and takes up to three hours to complete. It costs $435 for PMI members or $495 for non-members to take the exam. Once you pass it, you will be awarded your PMI-ACP certification.

The PMI-ACP certification is valid for three years from the date it was earned and requires 60 professional development units (PDUs) every three years to maintain it. PDUs can be earned through activities such as attending conferences or taking courses related to agile project management.

5. CompTIA Project+ Certification

CompTIA Project+ is a certification program designed to validate an individual’s knowledge and skills in project management. It is an internationally recognized credential that demonstrates an individual’s ability to manage projects of any size or complexity. The certification covers the entire project lifecycle, from initiation and planning through execution, monitoring and control, to closure.

The exam for CompTIA Project+ consists of 100 multiple-choice questions which must be completed within 90 minutes. To become certified, you must pass the exam with a score of 750 or higher on a scale of 100-900.

To get CompTIA Project+ certified, you must first take the exam at a testing center or online proctored environment. You can find study materials and practice tests online to help prepare for the exam. Once you have passed the exam, you will receive your certificate in the mail within 6-8 weeks.

The cost of taking the CompTIA Project+ certification exam varies depending on where you take it; however, it typically ranges from $200 - $300 USD.

6. Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) Certification

Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) is a professional certification program designed to teach and validate the skills needed to effectively lead Scrum teams. The CSM certification is administered by the Scrum Alliance, an organization dedicated to promoting and advancing the use of Scrum in software development.

The CSM certification requires that applicants have experience working with Scrum teams and demonstrate a knowledge of the principles, values, and practices of Scrum. To become certified, applicants must attend a two-day training course taught by a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST). After completing the course, applicants must pass an online exam consisting of 50 multiple-choice questions. The exam fee is included in the cost of the training course.

The cost for attending a CSM training course varies depending on the provider but typically ranges from $1,000-$2,000 USD. Once certified, there are annual fees associated with maintaining your certification status which range from $100-$150 USD per year.

In summary, becoming a Certified ScrumMaster takes approximately two days to complete a training course and pass an online exam. The cost for attending a training course typically ranges from $1,000-$2,000 USD while annual maintenance fees range from $100-$150 USD per year.

7. ITIL Foundation Certification

ITIL Foundation Certification is a globally recognized qualification that demonstrates an individual’s understanding of the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL). It is the entry-level certification in the ITIL framework and provides a basic understanding of the key concepts, processes, and terminology used in IT service management.

The ITIL Foundation exam typically takes between 60 to 90 minutes to complete and consists of 40 multiple-choice questions. To pass the exam, candidates must score at least 65% or 26 out of 40 correct answers.

To get certified, candidates must first register for an accredited training course with an organization that offers this certification. The cost of these courses varies but can range from $400 to $2,000 depending on the provider and format chosen. After completing the course, candidates can then take the exam either online or in person at a testing center.

The cost of taking the exam varies by country, but it typically ranges from $150 to $300 USD per attempt. Candidates who fail their first attempt may retake the exam up to three times within 12 months without having to retake the course again.

8. Six Sigma Green Belt Certification

Six Sigma Green Belt Certification is a professional certification program designed to recognize individuals who have achieved a high level of proficiency in the Six Sigma methodology. It is designed for professionals who are responsible for leading and managing Six Sigma projects, or who are part of a larger team working on such projects.

The Six Sigma Green Belt Certification typically requires around 40 hours of training, which can be completed online or in person. The course covers topics such as project management, Lean principles, process improvement, data analysis and problem solving techniques. Upon completion of the course, participants must pass an exam to receive their certification.

To get certified as a Six Sigma Green Belt, you will need to find an accredited provider that offers the course and exam. There are many providers across the world offering this certification program. The cost of the training and exam will vary depending on the provider you choose but typically range from $500-$2,000 USD.

Once you have successfully completed your training and passed your exam, you will receive your official Six Sigma Green Belt Certification from your chosen provider. This certification is valid for three years before needing to be renewed.

9. Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification

Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification is a professional certification program that provides individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to lead complex improvement projects. The program focuses on the Lean Six Sigma methodology, which combines the principles of Lean and Six Sigma to improve business processes.

The certification usually takes around four months to complete, depending on the individual's experience level and commitment to studying. The program consists of two parts: classroom training and project work. During classroom training, participants learn about the Lean Six Sigma methodology, tools, and techniques. The project work involves applying what was learned in the classroom to an actual project within an organization.

To get certified as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, individuals must pass an exam administered by a certifying body such as ASQ or IASSC. To be eligible for the exam, individuals must have at least three years of experience in process improvement or quality management roles.

The cost of getting certified varies depending on where you take your course and who is administering it. Generally speaking, courses range from $3,000-$5,000 USD for self-study courses or up to $20,000 USD for instructor-led courses.

10. PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP) Certification

PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP) Certification is a certification program offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It is intended for professionals who work in risk management, and provides them with the knowledge and skills to identify, assess, and manage project risks.

The PMI-RMP certification requires a minimum of 40 hours of formal education in risk management topics such as risk identification, assessment, planning, monitoring and control. The applicant must also have at least three years of professional experience in project risk management within the last five years.

To obtain the PMI-RMP certification, applicants must pass an exam administered by PMI. The exam consists of 170 multiple-choice questions that test the applicant’s knowledge of project risk management principles and best practices. The exam takes approximately four hours to complete.

The cost for the PMI-RMP certification varies depending on whether or not you are a member of PMI. For non-members, it costs $555 USD; for members, it costs $405 USD. Additionally, there is an annual membership fee to maintain your certification status which costs $60 USD for non-members and $35 USD for members.

Do You Really Need a Project Manager Consultant Certificate?

Having a project manager consultant certificate can be beneficial for those who are looking to start a career in this field. It can show potential employers that you have the skills and knowledge required to excel in a project management role. However, it is important to note that having such a certificate does not guarantee success in the workplace.

In order to make sure that you are successful as a project manager consultant, it is essential to possess strong communication skills and the ability to identify and solve problems quickly. You should also have an understanding of different software programs used in managing projects, as well as the ability to effectively lead teams and manage deadlines. These skills cannot be acquired through simply obtaining a certificate; they must be developed over time through experience and practice.

In addition, it is important to consider whether or not having a project manager consultant certificate is necessary for your particular situation. If you already have experience in project management or related fields, then having such a certificate may not be necessary. On the other hand, if you are just starting out in this field or are looking for ways to stand out from other applicants when applying for jobs, then obtaining such a certificate could help show potential employers that you have the qualifications needed for success.

Overall, having a project manager consultant certificate can help demonstrate your commitment to this field and provide evidence of your skill set. However, it should not be seen as an absolute requirement for success; instead focus on developing your own unique set of skills and experiences so that you can stand out from the competition.

Related: Project Manager Consultant Resume Examples

FAQs About Project Manager Consultant Certifications

1. What is a Project Manager Consultant Certification?

Answer: A Project Manager Consultant Certification is a professional credential that demonstrates your knowledge and expertise in the field of project management. The certification validates your skills in planning, organizing, controlling, and leading projects from start to finish.

2. How long does it take to get certified?

Answer: The length of time it takes to get certified varies depending on the certification program you choose. Generally, most programs require between 150-400 hours of coursework plus passing an examination in order to be eligible for the certification.

3. How much does a Project Manager Consultant Certification cost?

Answer: The cost of a Project Manager Consultant Certification depends on the organization offering the certification. Generally, costs range from several hundred dollars up to several thousand dollars depending on the program chosen.

4. What are the benefits of getting certified as a Project Manager Consultant?

Answer: Becoming certified as a Project Manager Consultant can provide numerous benefits including increased job opportunities and higher salaries due to greater credibility with employers; improved ability to manage projects more effectively; recognition within the industry; and access to valuable resources such as networking events and job postings.

5. Are there any prerequisites for becoming certified as a Project Manager Consultant?

Answer: Most organizations offering certifications have certain prerequisites including having at least three years of project management experience or equivalent education and training, passing an exam, and completing certain coursework or workshops related to project management topics.