The 10 Steps to get your PMP Certification
What do I need to do to get my PMP Certification?
First, get your PMP application approved quickly and then study for and pass the exam. Here’s what you need to do to get your application to write the PMP exam approved quickly:
- Complete the required number of months directing and leading professional project management activities (see next step).
- Find out if your project experience meets PMI’s requirements for the PMP application using my free online PMP Requirements Check.
- Optional: worry about how you are supposed to find the time to understand all PMI’s requirements for submitting your PMP application (or skip this step and sign up for FastPMP Wizard™ or FastPMP Concierge™).
- Start creating your draft PMP application on certification.pmi.org or have us prepare your PMP application for you. You should prepare your application as early as possible so that your exam preparation is not delayed while waiting for your PMP application to be approved (which usually takes 5 business days, but can take several weeks or more if your application is audited).
- Get a certificate of completion or a transcript documenting 35 hours of PM training (that must include an end-of-course exam and a certificate of completion) from a university, PMI Authorized Training Partner, or online course such as Joseph Philip’s or Andrew Ramdayal‘s courses on Udemy.com (usually “on sale” for about $15-30).
- Optional: Make sure your PMP applications is completely free of all the subtle things that can cause a PMP application to be rejected. Or if you were really clever and used our FastPMP Wizard or FastPMP Concierge products, you can skip this step because we already did that for you.
- Optional: Worry that your application will get rejected because PMI doesn’t understand your experience properly — or skip this step if you are one of our customers 😉
- Submit your PMP application. The PMI reviewers will usually take 5 business days to decide if your application is approved, selected for audit, or rejected. If you are rejected, you can usually try to fix your application and resubmit it at least once, but fixing rejected applications can be very tricky, so we suggest you contact us for advice.
- If your PMP application is approved, before you pay PMI the exam fee, you should sign up for a 1-year membership to PMI. It will give you access to legal watermarked PDFs of PMBOK and the Agile Practice Guide, and some other benefits. But the main reason for becoming a PMI member is the PMP exam fee for members is reduced by more than the cost of membership. You won’t need to renew your membership if you don’t want to.
- Once your PMP application is approved, sign up for an exam slot and start studying. Although PMBOK 7th edition was recently released, the current PMP exam content is based primarily on the 6th edition of the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK 6th edition) as well as PMI’s Agile Practice Guide, both of which you can download once you are a PMI member. The most frequently recommended exam prep books I hear about are by Andrew Ramdayal, Rita Mulcahy, or Andy Crowe. The books are available on Amazon and other sources. Watching Ricardo Vargas’ Youtube video that explains the PMBOK process groups and doing practice questions from PrepCast Exam Simulator are also highly recommended by many people studying for the exam.
That’s it. Just get 35 hours of PM training, get your PMP application approved somehow, get your copy of PMBOK, and study for the exam. The prep course and books mentioned above are optional but often helpful.
You can read more about the PMP application process or read our FAQ on what to put in your PMP application.