Getting Started With a PMO Career

BCS PPSOPMO Learning are delighted to announce that we’ve just become BCS Accredited Training Providers. Apart from a great certificate to add to our office wall, we’re also now able to offer the PPSO certifications.

There are two certifications from BCS which are aimed at those working in the PMO:

  • Programme and Project Support Office Essentials (Getting Started with a PMO Career)
  • Programme and Project Support Office Advanced Practitioner (Developing and Advancing a PMO Career)

The First PMO Certifications

Not many people have heard about the PPSO certifications from BCS. They are in fact the oldest certification for people working in PMO. Here’s the background to the PPSO certifications and why they are still relevant today.

Back in 2000, two books were published by David Marsh called The Project and Programme Support Office Handbook Vol 1 and 2. The books subsequently formed the basis of the PPSO Essentials and Advanced Practitioner training courses and certifications.

Many of the PMO practitioners who are leading in their field today started out their career with the PPSO Essentials certification.

Fast forward to 2018 and the books no longer form the course text yet the PPSO certifications still endure for a number of reasons.

The PPSO Certifications Today

The PPSO certifications have endured in the PMO training landscape for a number of reasons, here’s the lowdown:

  • The Essentials course is aimed at those very new to a career in project support and PMO – there is no other certification aimed specifically at this entry-level. The syllabus is pitched perfectly.
  • The PPSO, as the name suggests, is aimed at Project and Programme Support Offices or PMOs that support projects and/or programmes. It’s not about Portfolio Offices or Enterprise PMOs. It’s aimed at what is still the most popular type of PMOs in existence today – programme and project support offices.
  • The PPSO Essentials certification and course has a great balance between learning the fundamentals of project management PLUS the specific role of how you support programmes and projects. It’s a unique offering in that sense.
  • It’s a perfect course for anyone entering project management for the first time, hence lots of graduates also undertake this course when they’re first introduced to working within project management.
  • The Advanced Practitioner certification is also the only certification that focuses specifically on those PMO Managers and Leaders who are working in Programme or Project based PMOs.
  • Both certifications don’t align with any particular project management methodology – just good best practice project and programme management. This means organisations who choose to bring the training in-house can tailor aspects of the training to align with their own delivery methodologies.


PMO Learning and the BCS PPSO Certifications

PPSO EssentialsEileen and I are really thrilled we’re going to be delivering the PPSO certifications.We both did the courses ourselves (going back to the very early days) which set us on a PMO path – a good solid foundation before progressing in our careers.

The PPSO certification courses are available through both open public schedules and for organisations wishing to deliver in-house.

As with all of our PMO courses and classes, learners with PMO Learning also get access to a wealth of other resources such as free access to PMO Flashmob events; big discounts on the PMO Conference and further take up of courses in our portfolio. Learners also get access to Alumni events for all our certification courses – we’re committed to make sure the learning doesn’t stop when you leave the classroom.

So it’s exciting times for PMO learning and development and we’re looking forward to deliver some really great learning experiences for PMO practitioners.

To find out more about the BCS PPSO Certifications, start here or download the brochure



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