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June PMP Certification Numbers Are In

Every month I get a copy of PMI Today and I annotate 3 data points: New PMP® for the month, new PMPs year-to-date (YTD), and total number of active PMPs.

For the second month in a row, PMI did not include New PMP monthly numbers and the YTD total, opting to report just the overall number of active credential holders. This is not a problem since I have been tracking the PMP data for over a year.

With an impressive 645 more certifications than last month, the trend continues with the new number of PMPs in June totaling *4,630. Year-To-Date total is *28,211. There are a total of 389,726 active PMPs.

* Numbers based on YTD totals reported by PMI and historical data.

The current trend predicts PMI will hit 400,000 active PMP credential holders this year.


January February March April May June
New PMPs (Monthly) 3,714 3,713 5,344 4,718 3,985 4,630
New PMPs (YTD) 3,714 7,429 12,779 19,596 23,581 28,211
Total Active PMPs 367,619 371,014 375,959 381,111 385,096 389,726


I want to congratulate those 4,630 out there who passed the exam in June. It’s no cakewalk and I recognize your efforts and achievement.

What do you think of the current certification velocity?  Are there too many PMPs being certified on a monthly basis; too few; just right?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

About Derek Huether

I'm Vice President of Enterprise Engagements at LeadingAgile. I'm super focused on results. But I also take the hand waving out of organizational transformations. I come from a traditional PM background but I don't give points for stuff done behind the scenes. The only thing that counts is what you get done and delivered. Author of Zombie Project Management (available on Amazon)

23 Responses to “June PMP Certification Numbers Are In”

  1. July 30, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    I am quite surprised. I would have thought the resession would lead to a dramatic cut back in the number taking the PMP.

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 9:51 pm

      Paul, I see no better time to learn or create something new, than when we are having a recession. That’s what lead me to create my product, PMP Flashcards (gratuitous plug)

  2. July 30, 2010 at 11:22 am

    I am quite surprised. I would have thought the resession would lead to a dramatic cut back in the number taking the PMP.

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 2:51 pm

      Paul, I see no better time to learn or create something new, than when we are having a recession. That’s what lead me to create my product, PMP Flashcards (gratuitous plug)

  3. Patrick Richard
    July 30, 2010 at 7:41 pm

    Derek,

    I’m not sure what to read in these monthly posts; aren’t you happy that so many people want to become PMPs? Isn’t this good for your flashcard business?

    Regards,

    Patrick Richard ing., PMP
    http://www.thehardnosedpm.com
    @hardnosedpm
    http://www.heavyrotations.com

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 9:48 pm

      Patrick, I’m in an interesting position, having a product that benefits from people interested in the PMP. I want to see good Project Managers, who may or may not have a PMP. At the end of the day, I would rather see fewer people getting PMPs, if it meant the quality of PMs was higher. If quality is not impacted by the quantity of people becoming PMPs, I welcome them into the fold.

      Thank you for your question!
      Derek

  4. Patrick Richard
    July 30, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Derek,

    I’m not sure what to read in these monthly posts; aren’t you happy that so many people want to become PMPs? Isn’t this good for your flashcard business?

    Regards,

    Patrick Richard ing., PMP
    http://www.thehardnosedpm.com
    @hardnosedpm
    http://www.heavyrotations.com

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 2:48 pm

      Patrick, I’m in an interesting position, having a product that benefits from people interested in the PMP. I want to see good Project Managers, who may or may not have a PMP. At the end of the day, I would rather see fewer people getting PMPs, if it meant the quality of PMs was higher. If quality is not impacted by the quantity of people becoming PMPs, I welcome them into the fold.

      Thank you for your question!
      Derek

  5. July 30, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    My feeling is that as long as people pass the exam – and have actually qualified with the work experience, there’s never too many certifications. I’m going out on a limb and suggesting that more candidates have time to study for and sit the exam in this economic climate.

    Thanks for the post.

  6. July 30, 2010 at 2:07 pm

    My feeling is that as long as people pass the exam – and have actually qualified with the work experience, there’s never too many certifications. I’m going out on a limb and suggesting that more candidates have time to study for and sit the exam in this economic climate.

    Thanks for the post.

  7. July 30, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    Jeff,

    with the last statement ” It’s no cakewalk and I recognize your efforts and achievement,” why would there be too many PMP’s? If everyone on the planet had a PMP, what would be the downside?

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 11:03 pm

      Glen,
      Though I recognize their efforts and certainly applaud them, I do believe there could be a time when there will be too many PMP’s. More importantly, there will be too many “paper” PMP’s. I’ve been informed of multiple people going to PMP bootcamps and getting the credential, without a desire to learn or apply what is being taught. They merely want the certification. With so many people getting certified every month, I’m concerned people are gaming the system and the PMI audit process isn’t preventing it. As I responded to Patrick, I’m concerned about the quality of PMP’s being certified, not the quantity.

  8. July 30, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Jeff,

    with the last statement ” It’s no cakewalk and I recognize your efforts and achievement,” why would there be too many PMP’s? If everyone on the planet had a PMP, what would be the downside?

    • Derek Huether
      July 30, 2010 at 4:03 pm

      Glen,
      Though I recognize their efforts and certainly applaud them, I do believe there could be a time when there will be too many PMP’s. More importantly, there will be too many “paper” PMP’s. I’ve been informed of multiple people going to PMP bootcamps and getting the credential, without a desire to learn or apply what is being taught. They merely want the certification. With so many people getting certified every month, I’m concerned people are gaming the system and the PMI audit process isn’t preventing it. As I responded to Patrick, I’m concerned about the quality of PMP’s being certified, not the quantity.

  9. Shim Marom
    August 2, 2010 at 3:18 am

    Good effort mate.

  10. Shim Marom
    August 1, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    Good effort mate.

  11. September 10, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    In your quantity vs. quality argument I would think when going through the PMP application last year (after 16 years of actual PM work) it seemed the application was more difficult than the test. With that said, later in the year when at a PM course for SDLC, there were at least 2 others in my class less than 2 years out of a 4-year college and had PMP. Seemed strange that both these individuals happen to be in the same class and both happen to begin immediately upon graduation to achieve their 4500 hours of experience AND get the PMP! What were they doing in senior year, budgeting how to divide the cost of pizzas on study nights in the dorm and scheduling when Domino’s would get there and maybe a Monte Carlo analysis on whether or not the driver will be more than 30 minutes for a probability on whether or not they’ll get their pizza for free?

    While I can only imagine the resources required to add 4600 PMPs per month; I think the review process may need a little tweaking. This will maintain quality PMPs and not paper PMPs!

    • Derek Huether
      September 10, 2010 at 3:49 pm

      Walter, though I laughed out loud when I read your comment, you raise a very serious issue.
      Per PMI’s website, applicants need a four-year degree (bachelor’s or the global equivalent) and at least three years of project management experience, with 4,500 hours leading and directing projects and 35 hours of project management education. I don’t disagree that the audit process needs a little work. That said, when I recently contacted PMI, they stated the audit numbers have remained consistent over the last few years. When I pressed them about the perception of non-qualified people getting their certifications, the response was there is a mechanism with dealing with those people. I was then reminded that reporting someone to PMI could open a nasty can of worms and the report could be construed as slander, if there is no written proof.

  12. September 10, 2010 at 6:20 am

    In your quantity vs. quality argument I would think when going through the PMP application last year (after 16 years of actual PM work) it seemed the application was more difficult than the test. With that said, later in the year when at a PM course for SDLC, there were at least 2 others in my class less than 2 years out of a 4-year college and had PMP. Seemed strange that both these individuals happen to be in the same class and both happen to begin immediately upon graduation to achieve their 4500 hours of experience AND get the PMP! What were they doing in senior year, budgeting how to divide the cost of pizzas on study nights in the dorm and scheduling when Domino’s would get there and maybe a Monte Carlo analysis on whether or not the driver will be more than 30 minutes for a probability on whether or not they’ll get their pizza for free?

    While I can only imagine the resources required to add 4600 PMPs per month; I think the review process may need a little tweaking. This will maintain quality PMPs and not paper PMPs!

    • Derek Huether
      September 10, 2010 at 8:49 am

      Walter, though I laughed out loud when I read your comment, you raise a very serious issue.
      Per PMI’s website, applicants need a four-year degree (bachelor’s or the global equivalent) and at least three years of project management experience, with 4,500 hours leading and directing projects and 35 hours of project management education. I don’t disagree that the audit process needs a little work. That said, when I recently contacted PMI, they stated the audit numbers have remained consistent over the last few years. When I pressed them about the perception of non-qualified people getting their certifications, the response was there is a mechanism with dealing with those people. I was then reminded that reporting someone to PMI could open a nasty can of worms and the report could be construed as slander, if there is no written proof.

  13. Bill Mowery
    October 10, 2010 at 11:09 am

    Walter makes a very good point about the number and quality concerns in PMP certification. One only has to open any PMI publication or visit the PMI web site to see a never ending stream of advertisements for “PMP Boot Camps” and similar such nonsense.

    Practically anyone of reaonsable intelligence can attend a week long cram session and retain enough information to simply pass the test. Does this mean the individual has practical understanding and comprehension of the material for practical application? This is left as a mental exercise for the reader.

    I believe I share the concern of many that the PMP certification is beginning to be devalued by its commonality and with the obvious relative ease with which it can be obtained. Again to Walter’s post, graduates barely two years out of college seem unlikely to have gained the relevant experience to hold the certification.

    • Anonymous
      October 11, 2010 at 2:54 am

      Bill, I certainly don’t disagree with you. I remain optimistic that PMI will change how things are done. They will change the PMP Exam and they will change how people prepare for the exam. Regardless if they change the ecosystem, they can’t change what motivates people. Some are motivated by having a credential on their resume. Others merely want to expand their knowledge base.

  14. Chris Fox
    March 31, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    Some of you guys strike me as just being jealousthat u aren’t the only one who holds the precious cert. I have time in and I studied and passed the test period. Just like graduating from college, some grads will be successful but some will not but all met base standards to graduate, so give it rest . don’t player hate , participate!

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