Prince2 vs PMP

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by Ruchitha Geebu
Last modified: April 21st 2021

For the past few years, Project management has been one of the most profitable and in-demand career options. The future is undoubtedly bright for the field, and it is not slowing down.

According to a PMI report, by 2027, there will be a demand for about 87.7 million project management-oriented roles.

If you are an aspiring project manager, choosing the right project management certification is an important decision. You are always trying to upgrade your skills, enhance your productivity, gain some experience, and mainly, get a certificate. Industry-recognized certifications give project managers a significant advantage over non-certified professionals.

Both the Project Management Professional (PMP) and PRINCE2 certifications hold a high reputation in the field. But the question is: which one is right for you? What are the factors to consider?

In this article, we cover an in-depth overview of PMP and PRINCE2 certifications, their differences, benefits, career prospects, and so much more. Read on to find out what is the right choice for your career.

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Prince2 vs PMP - What are the Differences?

Project management includes planning, organizing, motivating, and controlling the available resources to achieve the organization’s objectives. The challenge is to reach the project goals considering its scope, time, quality, and cost.

About PMP and Prince2

About PMP:

PMP, which stands for "Project Management Professional," is a widely popular certification among project management professionals. The PMI (Project Management Institute) in Philadelphia, USA, is a not-for-profit membership association administered PMP.

The PMBOK ( Project Management Body of Knowledge ) guide called the "bible" for project managers worldwide. Its 6th edition was published in September 2017.

[ Related Article: About PMP ]

About PRINCE2:

PRINCE2 stands for "PRojects IN Controlled Environments." Currently, Axelos, UK, owns the PRINCE2 certification.

PRINCE2 project management is a process-based methodology used for productive project management. Its official manual called "Managing successful projects with PRINCE2,” is helpful for practitioners. 

Prince2 and PMP: Framework process

PMP project management framework process

The PMP project management framework process consists of the following steps:

  1. Initiation
  2. Planning
  3. Execution
  4. Control
  5. Monitoring
  6. Termination

PRINCE2 project management framework process

The PRINCE2 project management framework process consists of the following steps:

  1. Start-up
  2. Direction
  3. Initiation
  4. Stage control
  5. Stage boundary management
  6. Planning
  7. Product delivery management
  8. Closing

What are the differences between PMP and PRINCE2?

Basis of Comparison PRINCE2 PMP
Origin place
 
United Kingdom The United States of America.
Owner Axelos, UK, owns PRINCE2. The Project Management Institute (PMI), USA, administers PMP.
Purpose in Project PRINCE2 answers the PMP answers the How?
Management What/When/Who questions of Project Management. Questions of Project Management.
Methodology PRINCE2 follows a process-based methodology. PMP follows a knowledge-based methodology.
Exam guidelines   The PMI site has the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge) Guide's 6th edition. Also, it has standard and practice frameworks
Frameworks PRINCE2 has a prescriptive framework based on the best practices in the project environment. PMP has a descriptive framework based on knowledge areas like scope, schedule, cost, etc.
Organization PRINCE2 includes an integrated set of themes and processes. It also has seven mandatory principles. PMP includes ten knowledge areas. It refers to mastering specific project management knowledge.
Project roles PRINCE2 has well-defined project roles PMP emphasizes the role of a project manager.
Location popularity
Widely popular in the UK, Australia, and most European regions. Widely popular in the USA, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, and some parts of Asia.

PMP vs. PRINCE2: Which one is more difficult?

PMP certification is more complicated than PRINCE2. It requires a minimum of 7,500 hours plus a secondary degree. Alternatively, it requires 4,500 hours and a 4-year degree.

On the other hand, you can get the PRINCE2 Foundation certification by only passing the exam.

PMP and Prince2 certification details

What are the benefits of getting a PMP certification?

The benefits include:

  • Certified PMP professionals have better salary prospects. They get more significant, and frequent pay raises.
  • There are more networking opportunities.
  • There are better employment prospects for certified PMP professionals.

Let's look at the different certifications PMP offers.

  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Program Management Professional (PgMP)
  • Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP)
  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)

What are the benefits of getting a PRINCE2 certification?

The benefits include:

  • Certified PRINCE2 professionals gain extensive knowledge in the project management areas.
  • PRINCE2 has a transparent laid-out methodology.
  • There is no confusion while executing projects due to standard approaches.
  • You get a better salary and employability prospects.

Let's look at the different certifications PRINCE2 offers.

PRINCE2 (2009) offers project management certifications at three levels.

  1. Foundation: The foundation level is the basic level in project management certification.
  2. Practitioner: The practitioner level is significantly valued in the field and is an intermediate level in project management certification.
  3. Professional: The professional level in project management certification is a tough one. 

The various certifications offered by PRINCE2 are:

Name
Description
PRINCE2 2009
Certification for Project Management
PRINCE2 2017
Certification for Project Management with customizations including Agile
PRINCE2 Agile
Certification based on an agile methodology to provide PM solutions
AgileSHIFT
Certification that provides an enterprise agility solution
MSP
Program Management Certification
M_o_R
Risk Management
P3O
Project, Program, and Portfolio
MoP
Portfolio Management
MoV
Value Management
ITIL
IT Service Management based on ITIL framework
RESILIA
Cyber Resilience

What are the project management career prospects?

The PMI reports state that we can expect significant job growth for project-oriented roles.

The below graph shows the statistics for the project-oriented job requirements by 2027 as compared to 2017.

The career prospects’ increase comes with its challenges, which must be addressed by aspiring project managers. Therefore, it is quite clear that recognized certifications for project management are essential for a fulfilling career.

[ Related ArticlePrince2 Interview Questions and Answers ]

PMP vs PRINCE2 exam details

What are the eligibility criteria for the PMP vs. PRINCE2 exams?

PMP certification

To apply for PMP certification, you must have:

  • A secondary degree (high school diploma, associate's degree, or a global equivalent)
  • A minimum of 5 years of professional project management experience
  • A minimum of 7,500 hours spent on leading a project
  • 35 contact hours of formal education

There is another alternative set of prerequisites to apply for PMP certification:

  • A four-year degree (bachelor's degree or a global equivalent)
  • A minimum of 3 years of professional project management experience
  • A minimum of 4,500 hours spent on leading a project
  • 35 contact hours of formal education

PRINCE2 Foundation

There are no prerequisites required for Axelos. But having some project management experience and proper training is recommended. 

PRINCE2 Practitioner

However, the requirement is to have at least one of the PRINCE2 certifications to be qualified.

How do you register?

PMP certification

  • You can register for the exam on the PMI website.
  • Fill in and submit the application form.
  • Pay the exam fee with the payment link shared by PMI after applying.
  • You can then select the preferred exam center and schedule for the examination.

PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner

You can register with any of the below two methods:

  • Attend an exam at the end of a training course with an Accredited Training Organization (ATO) or
  • Study privately and then book an exam without a training course with PeopleCert, an Axelos PRINCE2 Examination Institute.

What is the validity of the certifications?

  • PMP Certification: It is valid for up to 3 years.
  • PRINCE2 Foundation: It has no expiration period. 
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner: It is valid for up to 3 years. However, if you are a certified PRINCE2 practitioner, you can enroll in the PRINCE2 subscription to maintain your certificate.

PMP vs PRINCE2: Salary prospects

Certified professionals in project management earn higher salaries than their non-certified competitors. Having a recognized certification, like PMP and PRINCE2, shows that the individual has good knowledge of project management.

According to the PMI Project Management Salary Survey, the average salary of a certified PMP is $112,000 per year in the U.S. Certified practitioners earn 20% more than non-certified practitioners.

Conclusion

Both PMP and PRINCE2 are valuable certifications in project management. PMP follows a knowledge-based methodology, while PRINCE2 follows a process-based one. If you want to excel in the project management field, you can gain exposure to both certifications. Therefore, to become a globally valued and proficient project manager, you can opt for both.