Five years have passed since I received the CAPM (Certified Associated Project Manager) certification. After five years I can say that the idea of this article came into my mind during a discussion with an old friend, Mircea, who asked me:

„I would like to learn more about project management and maybe get the CAPM certification, but what are the benefits of this certification? Will my employee give me a raise? Will I be able to find a better job?”

This article aims to be an open list were people who have the CAPM certification can share their point of view regarding the benefits of  this certification, shared from person to person without having the feeling that you read an offer or a marketing material.

I’ll start it myself

CAPM Certification was first of all an ambition. I wanted so much to enhance what I have done in practice that after the PMP Exam Preparation, it was a real race.

After obtaining the CAPM, I felt it as an  honor at a personal level. Especially since, as far as I know, at that time I was the first in Romania. Professionally I can tell you how it helped me:

1. You can see the big picture

After going through the material and pass the certification exam you can see the big picture.

What do I mean when I say this? Personally I was able to develop the ability to diagnose. That almost every time I was able to see the effect and to figure out how it came to that point.

Now I am able to have one or maybe two options of what to do next, most of the time being the right decision.

2. You know what tools to use and when

Even if you don’t use a PM methodology, you know what tools to use and when, how it can help you and how to obtain what you need to get the most out of a project.

3. A better understanding of things

To gossip or to discus different approaches to problems is a fact during a project.

With the CAPM certification I gained a better understanding of things, and all the solutions that until then seemed to be textbook stuff and with no real relevance started to take shape inside my head and I realize how far I was from where I started.

All of the above came to me as a revelation at that time.

Furthermore, once I got the certification, I became a member of the PMI Romanian Chapter, started to attend the monthly meetings and for a while I was trainer for the PMP Exam Preparation classes at PMI. All in all, if you want to work on projects, if you have no experience or limited experience (less than 4500 hours), if you want to validate what you know, CAPM is the best approach if you want to lead a project by the book.

As a conclusion

I would like to answer Mircea at a personal level that even if you can’t see a difference in the first week, good things will happened sooner or later.

Next I thought of adding some other points of view. I hope that together we can promote CAPM certification, because if you struggle and learn, have someone answer your questions, this certification is achievable and if you want to deliver visible results in Project Management, I think that is a big plus.

I have been asking this question to many people:

What are the benefits of CAPM certification from your point of view?

Respondents opinion

Carlos Augusto Freitas, CAPM, PMP, ITIL – Professional Development VP in a PMI Chapter Rio de Janeiro’s Board of Directors, Project Manager and Consultant at Accenture and Professor

Today in Brazil we have a special moment to CAPM credential. All PMI Brazilian Chapter leaders with the PMI promote the credential around this country.

For me:

The CAPM credential has brought opportunities for my career and professional development in project management. I’m a one the first Brazilians in Latin America to receive the credential.

The credential helps the professionals in PM knowledge. CAPM’s are a strong support to project environment in organizations and the project managers. It’s a great opportunity for my path in PM. Today I’m a project manager responsible for PMO in oil & gas database area. I think the credential helped me achieve this.

Imagine the communication between the project manager and your project team? They are using the same language in common: the project management language.

Elena Stupu CAPM certified in 2009, Project Manager at VULCAN S.A.

In Romania, as far as I know, project managers start considering getting certified (CAPM, PMP and so on) only after they have relevant business experience, well… for me it was different.

I had almost no experience or few but with a lot of will and a little bit of luck I had the chance to try gaining this certification. So from my point of view:

> it was the best choice,  taking into consideration my experience and knowledge in project management at that time, and now, after 2 years from passing the exam I would do the same

> the know how gained during the discussions with both trainers and classmates, the info from the study materials are without a single doubt very valuable

> the diploma is proof of my knowledge and was very useful when I was hired as a Project Manager

> having changed my job recently, I noticed that during the recruiting process, most companies are looking for people with project management certification. So the PM diploma is no longer considered as a plus but rather a must.

> the truth is that from the practical point of view, experience makes the difference but with or without experience, the certification is a plus and if you get the chance of gaining it, you should try.

Long story short, the CAPM certification is an added value to my professional development, an added value to my resume and I intend to keep it.

Silviya Raduycheva, CAPM®, Senior Project Manager at StangaOne1

I would list the following benefits of CAPM:

> getting a very good understanding of PMBoK

> getting acquainted with best PM practices

> exam is pretty theoretical, so even people with less PM experience can be eligible

However, in general, I don’t believe CAPM is very beneficial. It is not really supported even by PMI – meaning less advertisement of the certificate, less benefits for the holders.

For example, CAPMers which are PMI members don’t have the possibility to claim PDUs through the PMI platform. The certificate is not recognized as a PM certificate by many employers (at least speaking from my Bulgarian experience).

The positive side – it is personally beneficial for people who want to work as PM and want to gain deep theoretical background on a very early stage of their career.

Are you a CAPM credential holder? Come and share with us the benefits of this certification from your point of view.

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