What exactly is the CAPM? And what are the top benefits of a CAPM certification? The CAPM® or Certified Associate in Project Management certification is a credential that recognizes professionals who are new to project management but who have received authorized training. Offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI®), the CAPM® certifies that a professional has a thorough knowledge of the methods and principles that are defined by the PMBOK® Guide, which sets the standards for project management practices across the globe.
This certification was designed for professionals that don’t yet meet the baseline experience levels of project management to earn the PMP® certification, yet want to demonstrate their skills in an effort to stand out from other job seekers. While there are many benefits of CAPM® certification one of them is that it represents a huge value-add to your resume.
The CAPM® was introduced in 2003. Compared to the PMP®, which was introduced in 1984, it’s still a fledgling. However, over the past 17 years, the CAPM® has rapidly become in demand and more sought after than it was even a few years ago.
Recently, in the course of conducting job research, it was discovered that nearly all of the twenty plus job ads that were analyzed for entry to mid-level work, requested either the CAPM® or PMP® credential. This may be reflective of the current 3.6% unemployment rate, but it also brings a new level of respect and credibility for the credential.
The CAPM® does have some specific qualifications which are less rigid than the PMP® exam, but stringent nevertheless.
The CAPM exam features 150 multiple choice questions that must be completed in a three hour time period. Until recently, the exam had to be taken at a registered testing center—but not anymore. Now professionals who have been prepared and meet the guidelines above can take the exam online at a time and day that is convenient to them. This online proctored option has stringent requirements, but is an excellent option for busy career professionals.
Top benefits of a CAPM® certification
There are many professional advantages of earning the CAPM® certification. Here are the top benefits of a CAPM® certification to consider.
1. Better career opportunities
According to market research, project management skills are in high demand in almost all organizations and industries. It’s expected that by 2020, nearly 1.57 million new positions will be created globally for project managers. To meet this rising demand and skills gap, experienced and new project management professionals are advised to earn industry-recognized certifications and the CAPM® certification is one them. Just some of the job profiles that you can expect to qualify for with a CAPM® include:
- Business analyst consultants
- PMO operational support analyst
- IT technical project manager
- Marketing communications coordinator
- Member relations administrator
2. Increased salary prospects
It’s widely known that a CAPM® certification will increase an individual’s salary by 25%. While this may depend on several other factors, like job description and country, the certification beefs up any resume, demonstrates motivation, and increases skills. That translates to candidates that can demand better pay than non-certified professionals. Employers value PMI® certified professionals over non-certified ones and are willing to give better incentives to hire individuals they want. Project managers can earn between $90,000 and $150,000 annually. CAPM® salary for certified professionals averages $92,000. The top-paying IT industry regularly pays salaries above $100,000.
3. Personal growth and professional development
Candidates who have project management skills are in a better position to self-diagnose their career and work prospects. In addition, the learning material of CAPM® fosters confidence among candidates, making them better aware of the tools and best practices of project management. It becomes more than words in a textbook as the skills are deployed across a project, one earns the real-world experience that comes from the CAPM® certification.
4. It can be a stepping stone to the PMP® credential
Project management is the most sought after business credential in the world. Forty times more people take and pass the PMP® than any other certification on the market. So is it any surprise that most people who take the CAPM® will return to get the PMP® credential? Once you gain those highly coveted hours of project management experience, you can prepare for the PMP® exam.
Project management is a well-established field. The CAPM® certification is a signal to employers seeking to recruit capable and talented professionals. If you’re looking for substantial advancement in your career, CAPM® is the ideal solution.
Earn the CAPM® credential from Towson University
Towson University Continuing & Professional Studies is a registered educational provider of PMI® and is authorized to conduct both PMP® and CAPM® training. Our Project Management Professional Course—offered in class, online, or a hybrid mix—will help you master project management and prepare you for either the PMP® or CAPM® certification exams.