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Would anyone advice me on project management qualifications please?

(22 Posts)
scattercushion17 Fri 25-Sep-20 19:09:55

Good evening.

I am currently in a public service role and looking to start gaining qualifications over the next few years so I can change careers when my contract ends. I see myself in a PM/project admin role or a volunteer manager role (I've done lots of volunteering with various charities).

I'm very much a planner and organiser and would like to study for some project management qualifications. I am confused about the best path to follow though. Would I be correct in saying that it's more about having one of the PM qualifications and showing that I have the capacity to get the qualification? Having done research, I'm a bit confused as there seems to be so many available.

Would anyone advise looking into any other qualifications as well please to improve my suitability?

Thank you in advance.

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GallusAlice79 Fri 25-Sep-20 19:13:31

I would recommend getting Agile practitioner and possibly Scrum, depending on what industry you're in.

scattercushion17 Fri 25-Sep-20 19:24:00

Thank you.

I'm not an engineer or IT person. Ive just looked at scrum which seems software related so at least I can take that off my list.

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Ifailed Fri 25-Sep-20 19:29:22

might be a bit old school, but PRINCE2 was the one to go for awhile ago, especially if working with the UK gov.

Bigsighall Fri 25-Sep-20 19:36:52

Lots of companies want Prince2 (altho none ever use it ime!)
It’s worth getting.
I would try and get some budgeting experience too as that’s a large part of the job.
Stakeholder management is another key aspect so a course related to that. Try and manage some projects where you are now as companies like experience.
Project management is tougher than people think and you have to have a thick skin. Shadow someone if you can to see what it’s like.
However if you’re right for it, it’s a fab, full on, sometimes fun, job!!

scattercushion17 Fri 25-Sep-20 20:14:41

Thank you all.

Good to hear Prince2 is still worth it.

Cool, one of the things on my list is to get a treasurer type responsibility. Its the o ly way I can get that sort of experience really at the moment.

In my previous planning role, I did work with a number of stakeholders so I will try to build on that.

Have to have quite a thick skin on my current role so although I know it will be different in terms of pressures, I have exposure to that sort of environment.

Thank you all.

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MonkeysandParrots Fri 25-Sep-20 20:31:55

I’d advise you to take a gander around the Association for Project Management website,

Its also worth looking at job ads for Project Co-Ordinator roles or Junior PMs for the industry sectors that you are interested in working in. That will give you an idea of the type of professional qualification they are looking for rather than just picking agile or prince or pmi or or or ...

Good luck!

NotTodayDear Fri 25-Sep-20 20:39:52

Try looking at the APM website for courses - you might find something useful there.

I’ve been in construction project management for donkey’s years and my master’s and professional memberships are more construction- than PM-related. I’ve managed multi-million pound projects and don’t have any agile, scrum or PRINCE2 qualifications. What would probably be a good idea is finding a PM in the industry you’re interested in and seeing if they will mentor you, or at least let you pick their brains about what’s useful in that particular role.

Project management is such a broad church that you really need to focus in on what you need for your sector rather than doing more generic courses that mightn’t be relevant.

Good luck!

NotTodayDear Fri 25-Sep-20 20:40:48

Great minds @MonkeysandParrots 😊

JoJoSM2 Fri 25-Sep-20 20:58:09

DH says PRINCE2 is sth that makes him think someone knows the basics. However, he says his firm tend to recruit people with qualifications and experience in their specific field rather than any generic PMs.

fussygalore118 Fri 25-Sep-20 21:06:13

I work in public health as a senior PM, not i
IT but working in primary care managing big projects jn pharmacy, dentistry etc looking to progress into s programme manager role in the next couple of years.

I have PRINCE2, MSP, and currently looking at doing a masters.

You need PRINCE and MSP really for a PM role certainly in the NHS. But you need to back it up with experience, I had 5 years as a project coordinator, the 2 years as PM band 6 im band 7 senior PM now.
Hope that helps.

scattercushion17 Fri 25-Sep-20 21:07:55

Thank you, this is the kind of advice Ive been trying to get so I will have a think on where I want to be sector wise.

I will definitely look at the APM website (have done previously).

I'll have a look at ads as well.

Thank you for your help with this exciting Friday night question, I appreciate the advice.

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MaverickDanger Fri 25-Sep-20 21:08:52

Echo Prince 2.

I’d also look into project planning roles & Primavera P6. I work in the industry and junior PMs are ten a penny, but we are always short of decent planners.

fussygalore118 Fri 25-Sep-20 21:12:00

Happy to help.
Can I be rude and ask what kind if grade / salary you are working at atm?

Depending on this i would recommend looking at project support roles , generally around band 4 ( 23-25k I think). this will help give you experience to get project coordinator ( band 5 25-28 k) onto PM roles 6 (28-35k ish) and up

Greaterthanthesumoftheparts Fri 25-Sep-20 21:13:30

Other skills that will help are resilience and the ability to organise the chaos. Many people that commission project have, in reality, not much of a clue what they really want. So being able to help them identify what they’re really trying to achieve is a key skill, otherwise you can spend a lot of time working on a solution to the wrong problem.

scattercushion17 Fri 25-Sep-20 22:47:12

I'm struggling to bold names tonight so apologies for not answering directly to each post.

Thanks I will look at primavera p6. I do project planning in my job luckily, its just converting that experience into something transferable as it isn't project planning in the title.

Not rude at all. I'm at team leader /supervisor level and on 30k ish. I would be able to take a pay cut.

On the resilience side, my previous post to my current role was actually very much that so I should hopefully be able to transfer those skills. Thank you for your advice.

Fussygalore18 would you mind if I PMd you please?

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AltheaVestr1t Fri 25-Sep-20 23:01:58

I work with Agile/Scrum in a non-software industry, it's completely transferable, and very in demand.

fussygalore118 Sat 26-Sep-20 09:27:04

Of course not, PM away! smile

KenAdams Sat 26-Sep-20 09:37:00

Public sector seems to be increasingly working towards Agile, for non tech services but some people only know of PRINCE2 so I'd advise both.

avidteadrinker Sat 26-Sep-20 09:37:22

I would recommend PMP from the project management institute (PMI). It is used more by private sector whereas Prince2is more public sector. It has a less prescriptive, more common sense approach.
I am job hunting currently and PMP or APM are usually the qualifications asked for

TeamGhanaJollof Sat 26-Sep-20 10:08:13

I worked in the public sector in PM and PMO roles for many years before moving into contracting. I started in project support roles with a Prince2 foundation qual. Over the years, I have collected Prince2 practitioner, MSP, MoR, APM and Agile Scrum and very recently SAP Activite. They all provide you with a toolkit of strategies to draw from in certain situations but fundamentally is about being organised and structured in your approach, aka common sense. However, the more experience you can get in a variety of settings the better. Don’t rule out IT projects because you’re not techy, you don’t need to be that’s what SMEs are there for. You just need to be able to manage their delivery, ask sensible questions and see the wood for the trees.

No two projects I have worked on have been exactly the same, even when delivering the same output, the people and context make it like new every time.

I agree with what a previous poster said - you need very thick skin and be comfortable dealing with chaos and managing uncertainty. People will escalate all sort of shit up to you and you’re expected to solve it. Recently I had to tell someone what to during an earthquake confused

It’s your job to bring order- for years my outward face was cool, calm with everything under control whilst inwards I was a nervous wreck!!

It is very rewarding though and I feel lucky to have a job in the industry as the skill set is always in demand.

scattercushion17 Sun 27-Sep-20 08:38:21

Thank you all again for your replies, they have given me loads to think about. I've been at work do apologies for delays in replying.

I think my takeaway from this is to work out the best qualification for where I think want to go. Thanks for the IT industry advice.

Luckily in my current career I've had lots of experience with uncertainty /chaos / brining order so this should stand me in good stead (and yes inside stressing) . In terms I'd stress levels, is there a huge difference between those of a coordinator and a manager please?

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