PMP or Prince 2 – The Management Certification Suitable For You

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Last updated on
23rd Nov, 2022
08th Dec, 2017
PMP or Prince 2 – The Management Certification Suitable For You

If you have arrived at this blog and are actually inclined to read it then it is a clear sign that you know what PMP and Prince 2 actually means. And no, it does not refer to the new version of the popular video Game of your college days [Prince]; it is actually the name of the project management certification that has huge followers and fans across the world.

And that’s where the trouble starts.

For its competitor too, boasts of a huge fan following of its own. The PMP certification, I am talking about.

Almost all project management professionals, at least once in their career are in a dilemma about which certification to choose from PMP, Prince2 or ITIL.

I, too, was faced with this confusion and finally, I was able to make an informed decision, thanks to the guidance of my experienced mentors and friends. A few days ago, one of my audience at a seminar asked me which certification to choose between PMP and Prince 2 and it reminded me of my days.

This caused me to think why not write a blog for general audience and in turn, maybe it will help some of you. So I hope my little attempt serves its purpose. Please do let me know likewise or otherwise by leaving comments below this blog.

Let’s begin!

Brief summary about PMP – So that you know what we are dealing with:

  • PMP certificate is a trademark certification issued by PMI org and is a world-renowned project management certification that can be practised across domains, industries, and geographies.
  • PMP stands for Project Management Professional and PMI stands for Project Management Institute
  • PMP is governed by a framework known as PMBoK [Project Management Book Of Knowledge]
  • This PMBoK is like a holy grail for PMI members and PMP certified members
  • It gives tools and techniques for different situations and phases of project and it gives freedom to the project manager to decide which one to use in a particular situation depending upon the circumstances, history and future aspects
  • PMP places onus on Integrity, Professionalism, Ethics, Communication, and transparency.
  • PMI guides the project manager on the kind of role he/she should play in the success of projects and this lays down multiple guidance for them to be followed in spirit; the actual implementation may not be a textbook version.

Brief Summary about Prince 2 – So that you know what we are comparing against:

  • Prince2 stands for “Projects in Controlled Environment” version2
  • It also can be utilized for any type of project in the world
  • It clearly lays out the roles and responsibilities of the team members in the project members
  • The project is clearly divided into smaller manageable groups and has well laid out processes to be followed by the project manager
  • It has 3 levels of certification: Foundation, Practitioner, and Professional
  • Practical, to-do format, clear-cut items to be assigned, tracked and delivered are laid out in this AXELOS owned world famous certification.
  • Hence, the name “Projects In Controlled Environment” ☺

As you must have sensed by now, PMP and Prince2 differ from each other in the following ways:

  1. PMP deals with a broad-level generic framework that believes in empowering you with the best-in-class tools and techniques but leaves the implementation and decision making to you as per your thought process
  2. Prince2 restricts your ability to change things because each and every process is clearly laid out with specific roles for team members and hence, well-defined project success
  3. PMP believes that project manager is an enabler whereas Prince2 visualizes project manager as an enforcer.
  4. PMP needs to be renewed every 3 years through contribution to the field of project management by sharing your knowledge and learning on your own; whereas Prince2 relies on making you appear for examination every 3-5 years.
  5. The terminologies used by each of the certification is different but I think you knew this would happen ☺

Which certification is suitable for you – PMP or Prince 2?

We are clear by now, that both certifications are good, both of them are world renowned and both of them can lead to Project success. So which one should you go for? That was the initial question, isn’t it?

Well, the answer is very simple and it is not related to the technical superiority of the PMP online certification course material for either of them. It is dependent on facts like:

  1. Where you live and work
  2. Where your clients are situated
  3. The kind of work routine that suits you

Yes, strange! But it’s true. It has to come to that. Can you believe that? I couldn’t either when I first got to know about these but it turned out to be true.

See, the thing is:

  1. Prince2 is followed fervently and much respected in Europe, UK and Australia
  2. PMP is adhered to and recommended for certain geographical regions such as North America, South America
  3. The remaining world such as Asia and Africa is neutral to both certifications and that leads to the next question: Where are your clients situated?

And hence, your home address and your client location determine the certification you should go for.

Some often asked questions across different forums: 

1) Should I do both the certifications: PMP and Prince?

If you can afford them then why not! They are expensive. Around 600-700 USD for PMP and around 400USD for Prince2 [exact price may vary across countries]. So if your pocket allows, then it will be a good thing to have. Is it really necessary? No. I am PMP certified and I have delivered projects to clients across globe and it has not hurt me.

2) Will my pay package increase with these certifications? If yes, which one gives better yields?
Yes, your package will go up substantially after getting certified because it signifies that you have spent effort in getting familiar with the best-in-class frameworks and techniques. So big clients and companies can rely on you. The positive increase is almost similar for you.

3) Which certification is better for Infrastructure projects? Are they specific to IT or software projects only?

No, they are not specific to IT or software projects.

Yes, they can be used for Infrastructure, manufacturing or service-based projects. Because both the certifications allow you to learn the best techniques to deliver a project. The only difference is in the way they approach success.

While PMP believes that you can do well as long as you know the right way of doing things, Prince2 believes in making sure that you follow the right path.

4) Is there any gender-specific preference in the certifications for PMP or Prince2?

5) If I have clients in the Middle East and Asia, which one should I choose because you just now mentioned that these regions are neutral in terms of preference for project management certifications.

Going by historical data, Arab world has better connect with Europe and in recent times, some countries have developed good business relationships with America. So depending on the client and your profile, you can choose either of them.

However, if you are looking for a safer option and a long-term career in the Middle East, then I recommend that you take both certifications- PMP and Prince 2.

I hope this post was useful to you. By the way, do not forget that KnowledgeHut is a certified recognized provider of training for both the certifications: PMP and Prince2 with a very high success rate.

All the best! ☺


Abhinav Gupta

Blog Author

PMP, has 12+ years of experience working in Information technology sector and has worked with companies like Infosys and Microsoft in various capacities. He started his career as a manual tester for a world renowned software product and grew on to become automation champion in both functional as well as UI. He has worked with Healthcare units providing various software solutions to companies in North America and has worked with search engine based groups to enhance their experience and provide more bang for buck to their customers.