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Why Should Companies Invest in Project Management Training?

In a recent published article, The Forbes Coaches Council revealed agility, the ability to remain flexible and stable during change, as a key factor of successful leadership in the workplace. Actually, change (or growth) is often why a new project or company goal is initiated. Therefore, to more effectively manage change and achieve a company's performance goals, it is highly recommended that organizations invest in training employees on the systematic approach to the managing and controlling of projects, known as Project Management.

Structured project management offers key techniques and tools for dedicated managers to effectively lead during change, which is inevitable. With the challenges that come with change, it is important for leaders to be prepared.  Many project managers have gained their experience the hard way; through trial and error on the job. Although failure often teaches leaders valuable lessons, the hidden cost of on the job training can harm an organization’s growth in wasted effort, tangible costs, poor customer reputation, employee stress and also in failure to deliver the full goals of a project. 

Companies are now searching for quality project managers with the certification and the experience to help effectively address the challenges introduced to a work environment when change occurs. The Occupational Outlook Handbook (via Onetonline.org) reveals the online hiring requisitions for certified project managers has increased between 9-13% in the past year (by 13% in the state of GA) and is still rising.

While it is clear employment opportunities are waiting for leaders with certified Project Management (PM) training, what seems to be hidden knowledge is a quick highlight on the benefits of PM training for companies. The training is a key factor to selecting the right candidate to manage projects that will create growth for a company.  

1) Controlled Cost/benefits due to reducing setbacks: Structured training can fast-track a manager’s learning curve. Understanding of best practices and critical success factors for delivering projects helps avoid the setbacks of project managers and team members having to learn as they go.

2) Increased Customer/Client Satisfaction through understanding needs: Certified project managers use reliable and tested techniques to deliver projects.  When what was required is actually delivered on time and within budget, the customer will be satisfied.

3) Increased Credibility because of little to no rework: Certified project managers gain knowledge during course training on when certain tools and techniques should be used. This means that companies, with certified project managers, have a head start on most competitors. Companies lose credibility due to the need to restart or rework tasks for customers, or worse, end up with dissatisfied customers not being able to use what was developed or made during the initial timeline or budget.

4) Quality Assurance by planning upfront: Certified project managers are able to accurately determine the requirements of a project and assess the available resources and make best use of those resources to consistently plan and deliver a quality result.

5) Enhanced Confidence by planning for risk: Confident project managers are able to deal with and respond effectively to risks, which avoids wasted time, effort and money.

6) New Strategies through teaming: Certified project managers improve teams by learning simple ways to approach a familiar scenario with a fresh perspective.

7) Positive Influencers through effective use of soft/human skills: Certified project managers know how to positively influence others and resolve conflict (whether it involves an employee’s job performance or conflicts that arise amongst the team). Often overlooked on technical projects, positive behavioral change is just as dynamic of a success for teams as meeting project goals.  In fact, positive behavior change carries beyond the project into everyday tasks and workplace relationships.

As interest in this small group of certified leaders continues to grow exponentially amongst diverse fields of employers, the University of North Georgia Office of Professional and Continuing Education enthusiastically offers a classroom-based project management certificate program for individuals seeking or are currently in leadership roles. This program provides participants with a broad range of learning material and is facilitated by certified project managers with vast experience in managing small, medium and large projects.

A Certificate in Project Management will be awarded to anyone who successfully completes the following courses: Project Management Foundations, Planning- Scheduling-Control, and Identifying and Managing Risk.

Sue Davis-Westmoreland, PMP/R.E.P.
Sue Davis-Westmoreland is one of the facilitators for the project management certificate program. As a certified Project Manager for the past 17 years, Sue knows first-hand the benefit of understanding and using project management best practices to manage projects from initiation to closure ensuring business goals are achieved and clients are satisfied.

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