PRINCE2 (PRojects IN Controlled Environments) and PMI-ACP (Project Management Institute - Agile Certified Practitioner) are two extremely popular Project Management certifications. Both are widely recognized and used in different industries and organizations around the world. However, they have different origins, focuses, and approaches to project management. Here is a comparative study of PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP. This comparison will focus on the key difference between PRINCE2 and PMI ACP as well as the similarities between the two methodologies.
PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Head-to-head Comparison
Developed in the UK
Developed by the Project Management Institute (PMI)
Follows Agile methodologies
PRINCE2 certification is mandatory for some UK government projects
PMI-ACP certification is not mandatory for any specific projects
PRINCE2 Foundation certification is a prerequisite for the Practitioner certification
21 contact hours of training in agile practices
12 months of general project management experience within 5 years.
8 months of agile project management experience within the last 3 years.
PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner exams are multiple-choice
PMI-ACP exam is also a multiple-choice based paper
Formal training by Axelos is mandatory before taking the exam
Formal training by PMI-approved providers is mandatory before taking the exam
PRINCE2 certification must be renewed every 5 years
PMI-ACP certification must be renewed every 3 years by earning 60 PDUs.
Paper-based test, computer-based test and Online proctored exam
Online proctored exam
Difference Between PRINCE2 and PMI-ACP [Detailed Comparison]
1. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Origin
PRINCE2 (PRojects IN Controlled Environments) is a project management framework developed in the UK by the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) in 1989 and later updated by Axelos in 2017. It is widely used by the UK government and in organizations across various industries in the UK and some other countries.
PMI-ACP (Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI), a US-based non-profit professional organization for project managers. The PMI-ACP certification was first introduced in 2011, and it is based on Agile principles and practices, which are widely used in software development and other industries in the US, Canada, and some other countries.
2. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Approach
PRINCE2 follows a structured, process-driven approach to project management. It is based on seven principles, seven themes, and seven processes. The PRINCE2 methodology is based on seven core principles: maintaining a clear business rationale, learning from previous experiences, assigning specific roles and responsibilities, dividing the project into manageable stages, actively addressing issues as they arise, prioritizing deliverables, and adapting the approach to suit the unique needs of the project. It also provides a detailed project plan and progress reports.
PMI-ACP, on the other hand, focuses on the Agile principles of flexibility and adaptability. It is based on the Agile manifesto, which emphasizes individuals and interactions, working software, customer collaboration, and responding to change. PMI-ACP encourages active participation and collaboration with all stakeholders throughout the project and emphasizes minimal documentation and frequent check-ins.
3. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Certification
PRINCE2 certification is offered by Axelos, a joint venture between the UK government and Capita plc. To become PRINCE2 certified, individuals must pass a PRINCE2 Foundation-level exam and a practitioner-level exam, both of which test knowledge of the PRINCE2 framework and its principles, themes, and processes. The foundation exam tests a basic understanding of the framework, and the practitioner exam tests the ability to apply PRINCE2 to the management of a project.
PMI-ACP certification is offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI), which is a US-based non-profit professional organization for project managers. To become PMI-ACP certified, individuals must meet certain education and experience requirements and pass an exam that tests knowledge of Agile principles and practices, such as Scrum, Kanban, and Lean.
4. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Prerequisites
For PRINCE2 certification, there are no specific prerequisites for the foundation level exam, but for the practitioner level exam, it is recommended that individuals have prior experience working on a project and have passed the foundation level exam. Additionally, some organizations may have their own internal requirements for PRINCE2 certification.
For PMI-ACP certification, candidates must meet certain education and experience requirements. Specifically, they must have:
- 2,000 hours of general project experience within the last 5 years
- 1,500 hours of Agile project experience within the last 3 years
- 21 contact hours of Agile training.
5. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Exam Format
The PRINCE2 foundation level exam is a multiple-choice exam consisting of 75 questions to be completed in 1 hour. The pass mark is 55%. The practitioner-level exam is also a multiple-choice exam consisting of 68 questions to be completed in 2.5 hours. The pass mark is 50%.
The PMI-ACP exam is a multiple-choice exam consisting of 120 questions to be completed in 3 hours. The pass mark is not specified by PMI but typically falls in the range of 61% - 86%. Both exams can be taken in a physical or online format, depending on the availability and preferences of the candidate.
6. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Training
For PRINCE2 certification, individuals are required to attend a training course or self-study before attempting the foundation or practitioner-level exams. The training course covers the principles, themes, and processes of the PRINCE2 framework, as well as how to apply them in practice. The training can be done through classroom-based or online learning provided by Axelos-accredited training organizations
For PMI-ACP certification, candidates are required to have 21 contact hours of Agile training before attempting the exam. These contact hours can be acquired through classroom-based or online learning, and the training can cover various Agile methodologies such as Scrum, Kanban, and Lean. It is important to note that the training must be provided by PMI-approved providers.
7. PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: Renewal
For PRINCE2 certification, individuals must renew their certification every 5 years by taking an online "PRINCE2 Re-Registration" exam or attending a one-day "PRINCE2 Practitioner Refresher" course to ensure that the certified individuals are up-to-date with the latest best practices and changes in the PRINCE2 framework.
For PMI-ACP certification, individuals must earn 60 professional development units (PDUs) in Agile topics every three years in order to maintain the certification. PDUs can be earned through various activities such as attending Agile-related training, participating in Agile communities, and working on Agile projects. PMI also requires certification holders to submit an application and pay an annual certification fee.
PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP: How They are Similar?
When it comes to PRINCE2 and PMI-ACP similarities, both PRINCE2 and PMI-ACP are widely recognized and respected project management methodologies. Both have a focus on planning, executing, monitoring, and controlling a project. They also both have certification exams that test the candidate's knowledge of the methodology. The emphasis on project delivery shared by PRINCE2 and PMI-ACP is one of their key points of similarity. Both frameworks seek to guarantee that projects are performed on schedule, within budget, and in accordance with the necessary standards of quality. This is accomplished by giving project managers a defined framework and set of rules to adhere to, which helps to reduce risks and raises the likelihood that the project will succeed.
Another similarity between the two frameworks is that project managers are required to adhere to a predetermined set of best practices and standards in each of them. While PMI-ACP offers an Agile framework with a list of Agile principles and practices, PRINCE2 has a seven-stage process model. Project managers may use this to handle their projects efficiently since it gives a standard language and set of tools.
Finally, both frameworks offer a certification procedure that project managers may use to show their proficiency with the framework. This is a fantastic opportunity for project managers to show potential employers and clients how knowledgeable they are, which may improve their chances of landing a job or securing new business.
What Should You Choose Between PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP?
When it comes to the choice between PRINCE2 vs PMI-ACP, it depends on your specific project and your organization. It is best suited for larger, more complex projects and is known for its strong emphasis on governance and control.
PMI-ACP (Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that recognizes an individual's knowledge and skills in Agile project management. It is best suited for projects that require flexibility and adaptability and is widely recognized in the private sector, particularly in the software development industry.
If you are working in a government or large organization and are involved in complex projects, PRINCE2 may be the better choice. PMI-ACP may be more relevant if you work in the private sector or the software development industry.
It's natural to get confused amongst all the Project Management Certifications out there, each having its pros and cons. What you should choose for your professional career should solely depend on your own constraints, such as time, budget, your company, and so on. Both PRINCE2 and PMI-ACP are highly prestigious certifications and rest assured, you will not be disappointed after securing either one of them.