PRINCE2 vs. PMBOK – Frequently Asked Questions
ctc TrainCanada’s Project Management Trainer & Consultant answers most commonly asked questions about Prince2 and PMBOK
What is PRINCE2®?
PRINCE2® (PRojects IN Controlled Environments) is a project management methodology owned by AXELOS Ltd and used for managing and delivering projects. This methodology clearly identifies who should be involved during a project and what stakeholders will be responsible for. It provides a tool set consisting of processes and templates and explains what documentation should be produced during the different stages of a project. One key aspect of using PRINCE2® is that it is highly configurable, and can be adapted for all types of projects regardless of the industry and the marketplace.
What is PMBOK®?
The Project Management Institute, Inc. (PMI®), is the author and owner of “A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide)® – Fifth Edition”.
The PMBOK® Guide is a collection of processes and knowledge areas generally accepted as best practice within the project management discipline. The PMBOK® Guide provides a common terminology within the Project Management profession. This guide also provides the fundamentals of project management as they apply to a wide range of projects. The PMBOK® Guide is an internationally recognized standard that gives project managers the essential tools to develop and deliver organizational results.
Do I need a PRINCE2® or a PMP® certification?
Having both certifications will ensure a greater chance of success for your projects as they combine the best practices, knowledge and skills required to create and deliver successfully any projects. They could also increase your earning potential, enhance your skills and provide new employment opportunities.
PRINCE2® is a project management methodology which covers in detail, the processes and activities that a project management team must execute to deliver a project of value to the sponsoring organization.
PMP® is based on the PMBOK® Guide and, is the sum of knowledge of the project management profession. It covers the best practices required to deliver projects successfully, all of the time.
PRINCE2® and PMP® are complementary tools in your skill set – they do not compete. Certification in the PRINCE2® methodology is an excellent complement to your PMP® credential and awards PDUs® (Professional Development Units) for instructor led classes or online learning. If you are a PMP®, PRINCE2® already recognizes your prior learning so you can skip the PRINCE2® Foundation exam.
What will a PRINCE2® certification do for me?
Having a PRINCE2® credential will not only boost your skills and confidence for managing projects but will improve your employment opportunities. Many private and public organizations have adopted the use of PRINCE2® and therefore require their staff to be qualified to practice the method. In many advertised positions PRINCE2® has become a prerequisite. The majority of organizations that implement PRINCE2® also encourage their employees to receive the training and take their exams.
PMP® credential – What does PMI look for in the exam?
The PMP® credential is based on the PMI®’s Project Management Body of Knowledge guide. However this is not exclusive; PMI® prepares the PMP® exams based on roles and responsibilities clearly identified and aims at measuring elements of the project management profession in terms of real life scenarios. PMI® says there are commonalities between the PMP® exam but that the exam authors are “not bound” by the PMBOK® Guide.
Which credential should I obtain first? PRINCE2® or PMP®?
If you are starting out in project management, the PRINCE2® Foundation is the best place to start, or perhaps consider PMI’s CAPM® (Certified Associate in Project Management) credential which both have lesser experience requirements.
If you have some project management experience and wish to lead projects, then both the PRINCE2® Practitioner and the PMP® exams offer similar recognitions. If you opt for the PRINCE2® Practitioner, it will be important to prepare weeks in advance of your examination.
As for the PMP® credential, best is to take a PMP® Exam Preparation course prior to sitting for your exam. For the PMP®, remember that you may require at least 3 years’ experience before you can take the exam. It is also highly recommended that you plan for sufficient time to practice sample exam questions for either your PRINCE2® or PMP® exam.
When you are ready to look for a new job…
Your certification should be the qualification that is most common in your market. Check out what is used most in your industry. If you are targeting particular employers, find out which certifications they value.
So, go for it and get both your PRINCE2® and PMP® certifications.
- PRINCE2® is a Registered Trade Mark of Axelos in the United Kingdom and other countries
Project Management Professional (PMP)® is a registered certification mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
- Project Management Institute (PMI)® is a trademark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)® is a registered certification mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
- Project Management Institute, A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide), Fifth Edition, copyright 2013. Copyright and all rights reserved. Material from this publication has been reproduced with the permission of PMI.”
By Jacques Ledoux, PMP, PRINCE2, ITIL
Project Management Training & Consulting