Association for Project Management South Africa - Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is certification?

Certification is of significant importance in the project management (PM) industry. Certification refers to the evaluation and recognition of skills, knowledge, and/or competence.

Project management certification come in different flavours:

  • Competence-based programs wherein a person must provide evidence of actual, on-the-job performance
  • Knowledge-based programs wherein a person must pass an exam
  • Experienced-based programs wherein a person must provide evidence of training or education and experience in a particular field

What certification option is the best for me?

This depends on your own understanding on what you want to do and achieve in life. If you feel you want a general overall view of project management, then you may choose either the IPMA (level-D) or the PMI route.

If you are serious about project management as a second career choice, then the IPMA PM 4-L-C is the programme of choice. IPMA certification covers 3 different aspects - technical (knowledge), context and behaviour. IPMA certification values competency in each of these aspects and the certification process involves 2 objective assessors, which differenciates it from most certification types. You are therefore not just certified based on knowledge, but COMPETENCE.

What are professional project management bodies?

Professional project management bodies are bodies by project managers for project managers. They are non-governmental, non-political, are blind for religious, race and gender.

Any group of people can form a "body". Some bodies are network groups and others are self-elected and appointed experts that shows strength and commitment to a cause. These bodies are of a fleeting nature and serve a specific purpose for a specific group of people at a specific point in time.

What do professional bodies do?

They provide concepts, definitions, summarize PM understanding into books and papers, collate methods and tools, and provide funding for research and development, provide standards and engage with national and international standardization bodies like ASTM (USA), and worldwide with ISO and IEC. They are actively promoting project management at several levels and create a network where PM's can engage in.

Training programmes and certification are the main thrust. In addition, they hold workshops, seminars and conferences to create awareness and spread knowledge.

What professional bodies are there for the associated skills groups

Cost Engineers normally find their home in the USA. The AACE is a good example of an effective organization for the project support services group. They run a certification similar to the PMI offering.

What is government's role in the business of project managers?

Government understands that project management is a critical skill. Attempts are made to improve the awareness of the benefits of project management.
Previously the Dept of Labour, and currently, the Dept of Higher Education is responsible for the advancement of project management skills in South Africa. Through legislation, the statutory bodies of SACE and the SA Council for Project and Construction Management Professionals (SACPCMP) were created.

How do I get involved with government's programmes?

Join a government programme through the Services Seta.
Register at the SACPCMP as a project manager.

If your company has an internal SETA registered training programme, you can join such a programme and earn credits in terms of the NQF-system and eventually be awarded a certificate that you have complied with units standards towards a NQF qualification.

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