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InfoQ Homepage News PMI Agile Certification Pilot Begins in May 2011

PMI Agile Certification Pilot Begins in May 2011

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With the growing presence of Agile sessions at PMI conferences, there was a strong speculation that PMI would be embracing Agile. PMI finally announced their own Agile certification.

It came as a surprise to many practitioners, though most believed that it made perfect practical sense for PMI to accept Agile. Braintrust mentioned that the news came as a bomb to the project management community.

It seems to make practical sense, but PMs everywhere are still reeling from the bomb PMI dropped on the project management community last week when they announced they would be offering their own Agile Certification. According to the PMI website, they decided to offer their own certification as a way of keeping up with the growing trend among PMs to seek Agile as an important factor in their work.

Dennis Stevens mentioned that PMI regularly monitored the needs of the project management community along with the trends in the project management space. This move is certainly a reflection of that. According to Dennis,

Since Agile is a topic of growing importance in project management many project professionals are eager to gain Agile techniques to apply on the job. Similarly, organizations that utilize project management to serve both internal and external clients are seeing value in Agile methods to deliver projects for these clients more quickly.

Peter echoed the same opinion and so did most respondents. Pradeep suggested,

Looks like a much needed initiative. There will be critics to this movement. Let us see the course content and the vision to make any comments. Fingers crossed…

Mike Griffiths added that this is hardly a surprise move by PMI. Going by the trends of last 6 years of PMI conferences and the fact that there was an agile track at the last PMI Global congress, this was bound to happen.

The PMI reports that 65% of its members are involved in IT projects and Gartner are predicting agile will be used by 80% of software projects by 2012, so the demand is huge.

Some people in the community viewed this as just another certification. Paul Boos replied that he is not in for certifications and is not impressed by this one either. According to Paul, the Agile community should be able to self organize and act as a community without the 'organization' per se.

Mike Cottmeyer mentioned that though not everyone would share the same enthusiasm as him on the news, however he viewed the certification process as a useful tool to help people establish a baseline understanding in a given field. According to Mike, though Agile and PMI standard are not totally congruent but they definitely have synergies

There is synergy between PMI standards and the PMI-APP certification, but they are not totally congruent. Agile challenges many of our traditional notions about project management, especially as they relate to our assumptions and expectations around uncertainty. In many fields, software product development being a prime example, it just isn’t in our best interest to know everything up front. Sometimes it is in our best interest to let some of our requirements emerge as we learn more about the developing system. We need credible strategies for managing time, cost, and scope, and being able to know what done looks like, in the face of overwhelming uncertainty.

Most people viewed this development as a welcome move from PMI. As Johann Tambayah mentioned,

I guess this was only a matter of time. Its also a good response from the PMI given that methodologies like Scrum eliminate the role of the project manager. Its possibly the beginning of the transition from traditional project roles to agile project coach type roles.

Check the PMI site for more information on the certification and the eligibility criteria.

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