PMP vs PRINCE2: Project Management Certification Comparison

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24th Apr, 2019
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PMP vs PRINCE2: Project Management Certification Comparison

The IT industry is all about upgrading itself over time. Among several certifications available in the market, some are getting more traction due to their credibility in the industry. Some certifications are not only popular among beginners but have been recognized by top management, such as managers.  

Some certifications have helped managers manage complex projects and teams over the years. This article will get into the ongoing debate on which certification suits managers well. As you all know that Indians are expanding globally and are entering the top levels of top giant companies in the market. Thus, we are discussing about the top debate in the market-  PMP and PRINCE2 certifications. Both have benefits and have helped many managers grow and upgrade their skills. 

All thanks to such certifications that have helped them to outrank others. If you want to stand out among others, then you must go for the best online project management certification courses. Both certifications follow different approaches and are different on many grounds. So, you must know about both before you opt for any certifications, like which one is better for your growth. So, let’s explore more aspects of both certifications. 

PMP vs PRINCE2 [Head-to-Head Comparison]

Basis of ComparisonPRINCE2PMP
Origin placeUnited Kingdom (UK)The United States of America (USA)
OwnerAxelos, UK, owns PRINCE2.The Project Management Institute (PMI), USA, administers PMP.
Purpose in ProjectProcess involvedHow to implement the skills.
ManagementWhat/When/Who questions of Project Management.Questions of Project Management.
MethodologyBased on process-based methodology.Based on knowledge-based methodology.
Frameworksprescriptive framework with high focus on the best practices to be followed.descriptive framework with focus on knowledge areas.
OrganizationComes with integrated set of themes and processes with seven mandatory principles.offers ten knowledge areas that helps you to master the project management knowledge.
Project rolesOffers well-defined project rolesrole of a project manager.
Location popularitypopular in the UK, Australia, and most European regions.popular in the USA, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, and some parts of Asia.

What is PMP (Project Management Professional)? 

PMP (project management professionals). Managing complex projects can be tricky if you do not know how the system works and what you must do to smoothen everything. Thus, PMP certification is preferred. It is an industry-recognized certification that suits well for project managers.  

If a manager is PMP certified, they have the competency and skills required to lead an entire team efficiently. The Project Management Institute (PMI), USA handles this certification. It has its place in every industry that depends on your skills. Each industry has different demands for PMP certification.  

In 2014, there was a tremendous demand for this certification, and companies were recruiting at a large scale, leading to a rise in the requirement for a particular set of skills that makes the professionals stand out among others.  

If a manager is PMP certified, he must have knowledge in the PMBOK® Guide, the Project Management Book of Knowledge. Not only this, they must know to apply the best practices and principles to manage the project. These certifications ensure that the managers can lead the team and turn the vision into reality with solid outcomes. 

To get your PMP certification online, you must explore more.  

What is PRINCE2 (Projects in Controlled Environments)?

PRINCE2 is a commonly used project management methodology that has gained much popularity in the UK, Australia, and European countries. PRINCE2 or commonly known as projects in a controlled environment. This methodology emphasizes managing the resources and risks by dividing complex projects into sub-tasks. Such smaller tasks are easier to manage, execute, and assign. 

To manage these smaller tasks, PRINCE2 requires an organized project management framework. To achieve the control part, you need to focus on seven processes of PRINCE2. These processes are necessary to cover all the tasks that occur within a project.  

If you are PRINCE2 certified, you must know that PRINCE2 is a project management framework that suits well for any project. 

It follows a standardized practice and methodology to project management. It focuses on the project and the process involved to complete it efficiently. It helps the manager to set the roles and responsibilities for each team member. It helps the manager to divide the project plan into smaller tasks and eliminates ambiguity. 

The PRINCE vs PMP: Exam Details

Both exams are different from each other. But apart from that, costing also differs.  

1. Exam cost

PMP certification is a little costly compared to PRINCE2 certification. Th cost of PMI is $405, but for non-members, it is $555. 

While the cost of the PRINCE2® may vary based on the region you appear for the exam. 

2. Requirements

PMP certification 

If applying for the PMP certification, you must have the following requirements. 

  • A mandatory secondary degree. 
  • Five years of experience in the project management process. 
  • You must have minimum hours of 7500 in a particular project, leading it. 
  • At least 35 hours of formal education. 

PRINCE2 Foundation 

There are no such requirements for Axelos, but some experience as a project manager and training is required to get a basic understanding.  

3. How to register?

PMP certification 

You can go to the PMI website to register for the exam. Then fill out the application form, pay the fees for the exam, and select the date, time, and center as per your convenience. 

PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner 

There are two different methods to register for the PRINCE2 certification. You can either appear for the exam after your training or self-study and book an exam slot by yourself with PeopleCert, which is an Axelos PRINCE2 Examination Institute. 

4. Exam Format

Make sure to go through the exam format before you appear for it. These certifications are unique in the IT industry, especially for managers looking for instant career growth. So, ensure you are aware of the exam format and prepare accordings, displaying PMP vs PRINCE2 exam difficulty. 


PMP®PRINCE2® Foundation
No. Of Questions200 questions75 questions
Total Time for exam4 hrs1 hr
Exam PatternAbstract Questions with Multiple ChoiceAbstract Questions with Multiple Choice
Minimum Passing ScoreNot Disclosed, Psychometric Assessment0.5
Exam CenterPrometricOnline

5. Preparation

As both certifications have different exam formats, both require a different type of preparation and dedication. Due to their value, they both need dedication, irrespective of how long the exams are. It would help if you created a timetable to cover the syllabus. Without following a routine and timetable, you might not be able to solve all questions within time. With proper strategy, you can be able to answer maximum questions. Now you can easily compare PMP and PRINCE2. 

PMP vs PRINCE2 Preparation Time

Source

6. Passing criteria

Both certifications have different passing criteria, and you must know about them. If you have less time for the exam, you know what questions need to be prioritized to cross the passing criteria. Below is the difference between PMP and PRINCE2 certification. 

  1. PMP certification 

score more than 62%.

  1. PRINCE2 Foundation 

Approximately 55% mark 

  1. PRINCE2 Practitioner 

About 55% marks. 

PMP and PRINCE2 Certification Details

1. Certification Bodies

Both certifications are provided by different bodies, which is a significant difference. PMP is offered by PMI, while Axelos offer PRINCE2. The difference in providers also depends on the geographic location of their headquarters, the way they collaborate with a national government agency, and their origins.  

PMI.org and Axelos.com offer the required information on specific training vendors and certification exam courses. 

PMI / PMPAXELOS / PRINCE2

PMI, a global non-profit organization since 1969. Uses knowledge, networking, and standard resources to handle project management standards.

Currently having 3 million plus members and 1 million plus active certification holders. 

AXELOS introduced in 2014 by the Government of the United Kingdom and Capita. Used to develop and operate qualifications in best practice. 

PeopleCert, an examination institute successfully delivers AXELOS exams, acquired AXELOS in 2021. 

https://www.pmi.org/about/learn-about-pmi/founders  https://www.axelos.com/about-axelos  

2. Types of certifications

Well, the choice to make between both certifications is difficult. But, the choice between both certifications will be easier if you know your goals and career level. Both providers offer different certifications that go well for different career levels and with different knowledge.  

PMP and PRINCE2 certification options include: 

  • Foundational level (CAPM® or PRINCE2 Foundation). 
  • Professional level (PMP or PRINCE2 Practitioner). 
  • Agile project management (PMI-ACP® vs. PRINCE2 Agile Foundation, and DASSM® vs. PRINCE2 Agile Practitioner).  

You can opt for any course specific to the exams for each certification. 

PMI / PMPPRINCE2
  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)® 
  • Project Management Professional (PMP) 
  • PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)® 
  • Disciplined Agile Senior Scrum Master (DASSM)® 

  • PRINCE2 Foundation 
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner  
  • PRINCE2 Agile Foundation 
  • PRINCE2 Agile Practitioner  

https://www.pmi.org/certifications/become-a-project-managerhttps://www.axelos.com/certifications/PRINCE2

Other Critical Differences Between PRINCE2 and PMP Certification

Now that you know the basics and origin of both certifications, we will see the factors that make both different from each other. You must understand the difference between PMP and PRINCE2 carefully to make the right certification choice. 

1. Methodology

PRINCE2 is a process-based practice that has its principles to be followed. This methodology focuses on the frameworks and the involved processes for successfully executing the projects. 

While on the other hand, PMP is based on knowledge methodology. It majorly emphasizes the techniques and skills required for successful project management. 

2. Framework

The PMP certification involves the descriptive framework, while the PRINCE2 certification uses the prescriptive framework. PMP is based on knowledge, skills, techniques, and others, while PRINCE2 is based on implementing the best practice. 

3. Level of certification

PMI offers PMP as a standalone certification. Still, in some cases, you must go for CAPM certification before PMP to get a better and more detailed understanding of project management.  

While on the other hand, PRINCE2 comes in two different certifications. 

  • PRINCE2 Foundation Provides principles so you can be an informed member of project management following strongly PRINCE2 methodology. 
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner: Teaches PRINCE2 methodology, so you can apply them in real-time to execute projects. 

4. Recertification

To become a PMP certified, you must cover all 60 development units every three years. But to maintain the certification, you only have to pass the re-registration exam that conducts every three to five years after the time you have passed the first exam. But in the case of the PRINCE2 certification, you do not have to appear for recertification, and it is only valid for five years.  

5. Networking opportunities

As compared to PRINCE2 certification, PMP certification provides you with some networking opportunities. To get your PMP certification, you need to join the PMI, which will provide you with access to an unlimited network of PMP-certified professionals like you. 

PMP vs PRINCE2 Renewal

Based on the renewal factor, you will see that PRINCE2 is a more flexible option for you as compared to PMP certification. The PRINCE2 candidates do not have to renew their certifications. But the PMP certification has to cover all sixty Professional Development Units (PDUs) after three years. 

PRINCE2 vs PMP: Salary Prospects 

Salary Based on Job Role

PRINCE2  

PRINCE2 vs PMP Salary Based on Job Role

Source

PMP 

Salary Based on Experience

Experience largely influences your salary range as a project manager. The more experience you have, the higher will your salary. 

ExperienceSalary (USD)
Entry-level project managers$54,801
Mid-level project managers$90,488
Experienced project managers$103,333

PRINCE2 vs PMP Salary Based on Experience

Source

Salary Based on Industry (PRINCE2 vs PMP salary ) 

Considering the industry, PMP-certified professionals earn more in the resource and primary sector market, around $120,000. While as per Payscale.com, the highest salary that a PRINCE2 certified professional is getting is in the Banking industry. 

Project Management Career Prospects and Job Opportunities

The field of project management is growing more than ever, and new skills are required to ensure the success of any project. Thus, PMP and PRINCE2 are valuable.  

As per the PMI report, project-oriented roles are growing more than ever. The report says that the following region will see a tremendous increase in project-oriented job requirements by 2027 compared to 2017. 

 PMI job growth report 2017 - 2027

Source

There will be new more than 2.2 million project management roles by 2027. The increase in roles gives rise to challenges for project managers. So, getting certifications is necessary to be efficient in what the managers do.  

Benefits of Getting a PRINCE2 vs PMP Certification

Both certifications have benefits you must consider while choosing which certificate to choose for your manager role. 

Benefits of Getting the PMP Certification Include

  • PMP certified you get more salary, and the salary range is increasing due to increased challenges in the project management tasks. If you are certified, you will get frequent pay raises compared to those who are not certified. 
  • Once you are certified, you will get to connect with PMP's colossal network, where you can connect with several certified professionals who can help you grow and find new opportunities. 
  • This certification is recognized worldwide, opening doors to new opportunities. 

Benefits of Getting the PRINCE2 Certification Include

  • It helps in saving a lot of time and resources while working on a project with its straightforward and cut methodologies. 
  • Using its standard approach, the confusion will be eliminated, and you will be able to follow the procedures in the same way for different types of projects. 
  • You can expect a high pay scale for the manager role in countries like the UK. 

Tips for Choosing Between PRINCE2 vs PMP Certifications

Whether you choose PMP or PRINCE2 certification, you must follow the best practice to get optimal results. Below are some practices that must be considered. (PRINCE PMP certification) 

  • Test your experience and consider it a starting point to analyze which certification is better for your current role and experience, as PMP requires more qualifications than PRINCE2. 
  • Make sure to understand what you want to achieve, as both certifications have different scopes and approaches. The PRINCE2 certification focuses on processes involved in project management and frameworks, while the PMP certification focuses on broad knowledge and techniques. 
  • Special favor is given to these certifications based on their origin and geographic location.  
  • Both certifications take different duration to complete, and some require renewal, so if you want to make a quick certification, you must choose PRINCE2. 

PRINCE2 versus PMP Certification: Which One is More Difficult?

PMP requires a minimum of 7,500 hours with an additional secondary degree. While in contrast, for the PRINCE2 certification you need to invest at least 4,500 hours and must have a 4-year degree. If we see the overall picture, we can say that PMP is somehow more difficult than PRINCE2 certification. 

Conclusion

PMP and PRINCE2 certifications hold a valuable place in the project management field, and their demand is increasing in most countries. On the one hand where PMP is focused on skills and techniques to ensure successful project management, while on the other hand, PRINCE2 focuses on the knowledge and process involved in carrying out successful project management. 

We have covered their differences in detail, which will help you understand which certification is better for your role and experience. If you want to dig deeper about the certifications, you can consider the KnowledgeHut’s project management classes. Still it is an open debate and challenging for some professionals to decide which is better PMP or PRINCE2 certification. 

Now you must have got all your answers, is PRINCE2 better than PMP? what is the difference between PMP and PRINCE2? Happy learning. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Is PRINCE2 equivalent to PMP?

No, both certifications are different. The PMP certification is based on a descriptive framework, while the PRINCE2 focuses on a prescriptive framework. PRINCE2 considers the project management best practices, while the PMP focuses on specific knowledge areas. 

2. Is a PRINCE2 certification worth it?

Yes, it has its own worth considering various factors, such as cost, duration, exam pattern, and passing marks. All these factors are in support of PRINCE2 certification as compared to PMP. 

3. How long does it take to get your PMP?

To be a successful PMP-certified professional, you must dedicate an average of 35 hours to prepare for the exam. Being the world's top certification exam, it is challenging to score good without proper study. You must dedicate your time and efforts to prove your leadership experience and expertise in Project Management. 

4. What is the highest qualification in project management?

If applying for the PMP certification, you must have the following requirements. 

  • A mandatory secondary degree . 
  • Five years of exp. In project management. 
  • You must have minimum hours of 7500 in a particular project, leading it. 
  • At least 35 hours of formal education. 

5. Does PMP increase your salary?

As per the PMI statistics, a certified PMP can undoubtedly expect an increase in pay of 20%.  

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