4 Reasons to Get the PMP® Certification if You Work in the Construction Industry(3)

4 Reasons to Get the PMP® Certification if You Work in the Construction Industry

If you’re a project manager working in the construction industry, getting a Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification might not seem like a top priority. You might wonder whether the training covers practices relevant to the construction industry or whether the certification is worth the time and money.

But as you’ll see, there’s a compelling case for construction project managers to become PMP credential holders if you want to create new professional opportunities and advance your career.

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What is a PMP Certification?

The Project Management Professional® certification is a credential that verifies your deep knowledge of best practices in project management in three domains: people, process, and business environment.

The PMP certification doesn’t focus on any industry, meaning that project managers can apply the tools and techniques they acquire to suit the needs of project management in any field—including construction.

There is also the Construction Professional in Built Environment Projects (CPBEP) certification for those who work on built environment projects. This complement to the PMP certification shows you have mastery of both general project management principles and the specific skills needed to lead successful built environment projects—think of it as a PMP certification, construction industry add-on.

Should Project Managers in Construction Get a PMP Certification?

Yes, a PMP certification is a smart career move for any project manager in the construction industry. Project managers who have been formally trained and are active PMP credential holders demonstrate their expertise in the traditional waterfall approach as well as agile/hybrid project management practices throughout the construction industry.

Project management companies in the construction industry and most project management industries benefit from the project management practices tested on the PMP exam. It is also valuable for project managers as they develop their careers in the construction industry.

Here are four reasons a PMP certification makes sense if you are in the construction industry.

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PMP Certification is Globally Recognized

Project Management Institute (PMI) is a highly respected organization worldwide, meaning that PMI certifications, like the PMP certification, are globally recognized. This makes project managers in the construction industry a lot more valuable when they have a PMP certification.

The global nature of the PMP certification may not seem important if you don’t plan on moving far from where you are now, but remember that today’s construction projects often involve teams of multiple contractors, manufacturers, and clients from around the world.

When there are hundreds of different standards for project managers in different countries or even different states and territories, a PMP certification is the most effective way to prove to stakeholders that you have the knowledge and experience to manage their next construction project efficiently.

A PMP Certification Can Help Advance Your Career

Your construction project management career isn’t just about your current role. Whether you plan to advance within your current organization or are open to moving somewhere else, you’ll be competing with other project managers for those opportunities. When everyone brings similar experience and hard skills to the table, how can you set yourself apart from the crowd?

When competing with other project managers, the PMP credential shows more than your skills. It tells clients and hiring managers that you’re serious about your project management career in the construction industry and that you have the discipline to follow through on a long-term challenge, like preparing for and passing the PMP certification exam.

A PMP Certification Increases Your Earning Potential

There’s no question that preparing for the PMP certification exam will take time and money, so it’s only natural to wonder how the certification will improve your earning potential in the construction industry.

In a survey conducted by Project Management Institute, over 30,000 project managers in 37 countries reported their earnings. The results were clear: those project managers with a PMP certification reported a 23% higher median salary than those without the certification.

The difference is even greater in the United States, where PMP credential holders have a 25% higher median salary than their non-certified peers.

PMP Certification Keeps Your Skills and Network Up to Date

As you prepare for the PMP exam, remember that the questions are designed to ensure you know the most essential project management skills and how to apply them. Studying will help you evaluate your strengths as a project manager and uncover the areas you can improve.

Once you achieve your PMP certification, the learning doesn’t stop there. To maintain your certification, you’ll need to earn professional development units (PDUs), which are usually one-hour time blocks that allow you to keep up with the latest developments and best practices for project management. You can tailor your continuing education journey to best meet your needs by learning how safety, construction, and project management inform one another. It’s a great way to keep your skills and knowledge sharp.

Another way to earn PDUs is by “Giving Back to the Profession,” which can involve teaching, volunteering, delivering technical presentations, or publishing content on websites like PMI.org. There’s no better way to build your professional network and meet other project managers in construction.


While there isn’t a special PMP certification for construction projects, becoming a PMP credential holder can still help construction project managers advance their careers and build their skill sets.

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Erin Aldridge, PMP, PMI-ACP, & CSPO
Director of Product Development at
Erin Aldridge, PMP, PMI-ACP, & CSPO