In November, APMG sponsored the Arras People Ten in Ten Prize Draw. In order for people to enter, they had to fill out a short survey. We now have the results, and things are looking positive for professional qualifications and career development.

There was a total of 543 participants, with the majority in project management related job roles.

An encouraging 95% agreed or strongly agreed that formal project and programme management (PPM) qualifications are valuable in terms of skills and career development. This is reflected in which factors people think are most important when selecting a PPM qualification. In descending order, these factors are:

  • Professional development
  • Reputation of awarding body
  • Market demand
  • Value for money
  • Recommendation from a friend or colleague
  • Information on websites, blogs, social networks and forums.

Despite online information being utilized least when selecting a PPM qualification, it is used the most for staying up to date with trends and best practices. 83% of respondents said they are most likely to use websites, social networks and blogs. Other popular resources were professional memberships, forums, events, webinars and training courses.

In terms of PPM training providers, external accreditation is important to 96% of respondents. Reputation is central to the decision of choosing a training provider, followed by price, recommendation from a friend or colleague, location, experience with the organization, preferred supplier list and the sales pitch (website information, sales personnel).

When asked what the most useful aspect of training is, most respondents said the trainer (30%) or training materials (24%). Classroom and blended learning were the preferred method of learning, with only 14% opting for distance learning if given the choice. However, only 9% said they and/or their organizations would not consider online learning as a way of reducing costs and 87% stated they would be encouraged to take exams if available remotely.

Finally, almost 40% think there is a gap in the market for a more specialized PPM qualification. There were many suggestions for what this could be, but the most common were qualifications in business requirements, project recovery, blended project delivery, sector specific qualifications and formal links between available certifications.