How to maintain your PMP certification

Date: 18/07/2023| Category: FAQ| Tags:

PMP certification has a duration of three years. During this time, the certified professional has the task of striving to keep his or her certification active. To do this, there are several possibilities; we list them all in this article.

Taking the exam again

If no PDU activity is done during the three years after certification, the only solution is to retake the course and re-take the exam. Obviously, this is not the solution recommended by PMI, but in case a practitioner has not had time or a way to keep up-to-date with the world of project management, take courses and webinars or carry out activities, this is the only solution for him/her to remain PMP certified.

Collect PDU points

We have already talked about PDUs in an article on the difference between Contact Hour and Professional Development Unit. PDUs are 1-hour blocks of time that a PMP-certified professional must spend on training, studying, teaching or volunteering.

Over a three-year period, 60 PDUs must be collected in order to maintain one’s certification. PDUs are of two types:

  • Education: learning moments that enable them to broaden and improve their skills in the management of the company at technical, leadership and strategic levels.
  • Giving Back (to the profession): activities that enable professionals to share and use their knowledge and skills to contribute and help build the profession.

To maintain your PMP certification, you must collect a minimum of 35 Education PDUs and a maximum of 25 Giving Back PDUs. This means that you can renew your certification with 60 Education PDUs and 0 Giving Back PDUs while you cannot do the opposite (i.e. 0 Education PDUs and 60 Giving Back PDUs). The scheme to be followed to maintain certification is as follows:

PDU overview

PDU Education

PMI theorised the Talent Triangle, according to which the skills needed by a project manager should be distributed in three groups:

  • Technical management skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Strategic and business management skills

For this reason, among the 35 PDU Education compulsory for maintaining PMP certification, at least eight PDUs must be collected for each of the three groups.

Education PDUs can be accumulated in different ways, each of which will grant a different amount of points:

  • Professional training courses: courses held by certified trainers both in presence and in virtual mode. All courses delivered by QRP guarantee a certain amount of PDU points (e.g. following the PRINCE2 Foundation course will give you 21 PDUs, following the PRINCE2 Practitioner module will give you 14 PDUs).
  • Events: meetings, webinars and events to bring the community together.
  • Local meetings: activities and events related to the profession. They are often organised by the local PMI Chapter. They also provide excellent opportunities for networking and connections between professionals. Participation in these events grants 1 or 2 PDUs.
  • Online or Digital Media: individual learning by following online training or through various forms of digital media.
  • Literature: Also by reading manuals on the profession and its developments it is possible to obtain PDU points.
  • Informal learning: PDU points can be earned by taking part in structured professional discussions.

Here you can find all the detailed information provided by PMI on how to earn PDUs Education points through each of these methods.

PDU Giving Back

As mentioned, the maximum number of Giving Back points that can be earned is 25, and again this must be broken down into types:

  • Maximum 8 points earned by pursuing a profession
  • Maximum 17 points earned by volunteering and teaching

The main ways of earning PDU Giving Back points are as follows:

  • Professional activity: By performing the role for which you are certified, you can earn PDU points by doing practical activities that will help you increase your professionalism and get to know other professionals.
  • Content creation: creating any kind of content related to project management can grant you PDU points, be it articles, webinar management, videos, etc.
  • Presenting: you can apply for PDU points whether the presentation is given within your company, at PMI Chapter events or at a conference.
  • Knowledge sharing: By keeping track of the time spent tutoring and training by helping other professionals, you can claim PDU points.
  • Volunteering: PMI allows volunteering in different modalities and with different degrees of commitment, but always guaranteeing recognition of PDU points.

Again, the PMI provides a detailed description of how to earn PDU points with each of these methods, you can find all the information at this link.

PMP Training

As an Accredited Training Provider (ATP), all courses delivered by QRP International guarantee automatic recognition of PDU points for maintaining PMP certification, for more information see our PMP Exam Preparation Training or contact us.

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