Project management is a white-hot field at the moment, and it’s even more rewarding for workers who are Project Management Professional (PMP) certified. This in-demand credential demonstrates certified education, experience and competency in project management. It also usually increases the holder’s salary by 6-30 percent. With more and more companies requiring PMP certification for their project managers, keep reading to find out exactly how certification can give your career a major boost while turning your salary up another well-deserved notch.
According to the July 14, 2011 information available on the website simplyhired.com, the average salary for a project manager in the U.S. is $75,000. The average salary for a PMP certified project manager is $103,000—an increase of well over 30 percent. Even though seniority plays a large role in determining salary and more senior project managers are more likely to be certified, these numbers still clearly show that project managers with PMP certification make more money.
Exactly how much more money varies from city to city. Salaries for project managers in Atlanta and Houston shoot up around 25 percent after certification but less than 10 percent in Chicago and New York. Project managers in Los Angeles make about 25 percent more after becoming Project Management Professional certified and those in Seattle enjoy a 20 percent salary increase. Still, no matter what the exact numbers, even a 5 percent increase in salary is substantial and PMP certification can give holders major leverage in salary negotiations for a new job.
To apply for PMP certification, you need to have either a four year degree and three years of project management experience or a high school degree and seven years of project management experience. After your application is accepted, you become eligible to take the PMP exam, which is offered through the Project Management Institute (PMI). Putting in some serious study time for this exam is highly recommended, and a variety of online and hardcopy study guides are available. After you pass the exam, you’ll need to chalk up 60 Professional Development Units (PDUs) per year through PMI to keep your certification.
Since the PMP title is industry neutral, it’s desirable to companies across the board. A good project manager can save vast amounts of time and money, so most companies are on the lookout for managers with refined skills and an intelligent approach. PMP certification proves that you’ve got the education, ability and experience that it takes to be an exceptional project manager and can push your career in exciting new directions. If you want to increase your salary and secure your future in the project management industry, put in the time to study for the PMP and reap its benefits for the rest of your career.