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What To Study After PRINCE2?

By ILX Team | 30 August 2016

So you’re a PRINCE2 Practitioner. You’ve got the firmest grasp on the process model. You’re making the difference in delivering project success, but something is missing. Alternatively, you’re not seeing the results you expected for some reason. Perhaps employers are passing you by despite your impressive qualifications.

Which certification follows PRINCE2? What’s the natural next step that will ensure you career’s trajectory remains stratospheric? In this blog we aim to answer that question.

Is PRINCE2 the only qualification I need?

PRINCE2 is still popular worldwide. Nearly 60% of respondents to Axelos’s 2016 PRINCE2 Survey state that it is invaluable to their job roles. And it remains a much sought qualification for many other reasons…

A PRINCE2 Practitioner qualification can be achieved in three to five days depending on your choice of classroom course. This makes it a very desirable training course to pursue.

Furthermore, PRINCE2’s concepts are functional. There can be no denying that the method works. (That is as long as the processes and principles are tailored and implemented correctly.)

Also, PRINCE2 is still almost synonymous with project management in the collective mind. This goes to show how effective the marketing of PRINCE2 has been since its creation by Axelos in 1996.

Having said this, global trends suggest that PRINCE2 Practitioner alone may not suffice. In the always-competitive employment market and project management industry, other factors are at work.

What are the trends?

Project management best practices are catching up with the digital world. Or the digital world is catching up with project management. Whichever way you see it, there is a rising reliance on shared tools and applications.

Virtual teams managed through the web may well be the new standard before long. They will employ shared management software. They may require new and innovative management styles. As a result, proving your computer skills and team leadership abilities to employers is of greater importance than ever.

Soft skills that support project management are also seen to be more attractive nowadays. There’s a notable emphasis on continual professional development. That means more certifications under your belt!

Simply put, it may no longer be enough to know the PRINCE2 method and model. You also have to exhibit a thorough understanding of risk, management of change, or value analysis. Your comprehension of these subject areas can make or break a project. Knowing just one more method might provide the extra push that realizes your project’s benefits.

It’s also fair to say that other project management qualifications’ stars are on the rise. It’s more common to see managers certified in PMI PMP (from the Project Management Institute) or APM APMP (from the Association for Project Management). Project teams categorized as ‘high performing’ tend to have more PMP-certified individuals, for instance.

So what’s the answer?

Now we know that PRINCE2 is increasingly sought after as part of a group of qualifications. You, no doubt, want to know which other methods and courses are the best to integrate.

Thankfully, the other training courses in Axelos’ stable compliment PRINCE2 very nicely. One example is Managing Successful Programmes (MSP). It is a perfect choice for bigger organisations with projects and change initiatives under the ‘programme’ umbrella. It is the most widely adopted Programme Management method around - not one to ignore if it suits your business case.

Another example from Axelos is Portfolio, Project and Programme Offices (P3O). Studying this subject is a great way to support existing PRINCE2 and MSP teams within your office. On the other hand, PRINCE2 is one of the most widely adopted methods in the IT industry. ITIL training will integrate with PRINCE2 fairly seamlessly to help deliver business objectives.

The APMP certification previously mentioned is also rising in popularity. It’s worth noting, though, that APMP isn’t a methodology as much as a body of knowledge. It provides more of the how than the when, teaching techniques for associated processes. It is generally seen as a good choice for the well-rounded project manager. It compliments PRINCE2 nicely in this way. Some providers even offer an APMP for PRINCE2 Practitioners course to help blend the two.

Then there’s AgilePM. Agile and ‘agility’ is the inheritor to PRINCE2 as the king of project management marketing in some ways. Many organizations are adapting AgilePM and other methods, like Scrum or Kanban, into their strategies. It is hugely popular especially in IT and development organizations.

PRINCE2 Agile is designed by Axelos to help PRINCE2 Practitioners learn and appreciate AgilePM guidance. It blends the two methods to provide the best of both worlds. It also provides much-needed context for the aforementioned agile methodologies like Scrum. This course just so happens to be available through ILXGroup.com today!

In conclusion

There’s no reason not to strengthen your project prospects with a certification beyond PRINCE2. Hopefully you have some ideas for complimentary methods and qualifications to pursue.

It’s important to keep a finger on the pulse of these industry trends if you want to remain a key player in project teams. Luckily, you don’t have to go on the long hunt. Many of the courses discussed here are offered through our training pages at ILXGroup.com. The majority are available online or as classroom-style sessions, allowing you to learn in the way that suits you best.

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