Setting: The base of a windmill in Kansas
Characters: Dorothy and Toto, who just returned from Oz
Dorothy: Oh, Toto, what ever am I going to do?
Dorothy: When we were back in Oz, I taught the munchkins all about project management. And I was good. I could do schedules and software requirements.
Dorothy: Here, everyone keeps asking me about PDUs and am I a PMI® REP®. I feel so lost and helpless. Whatever am I to do?
Feeling a little like Dorothy? You’ve got all this great training, but no one is taking it. They keep asking about PDUs. PDUs are professional development units for the PMI®. The Project Management Institute, Inc. is the governing body and standards body for all things project management.
In order to be able to offer PDUs, an organization must become a PMI® Registered Education Provider. I can’t pass much judgment on the process because by the time CAI-U got around to seeking PDU’s, one of our departments had already registered to become an REP (and succeeded).
PMI looks at several criteria that an organization must meet to become an REP:
- Be mature as a legal organization and offer project management training for at least one year
- Provide evidence of quality product design, delivery and content
- Show materials that are consistent with PMI standards or clearly indicate in marketing and instructional materials that the offering differs
- Properly award PDUs for course completion
- Represent REP properly
If you feel you meet these guidelines, you can follow a five-step process
- Complete an application
- Review PMI’s list of reviewers to prevent any conflict of interest
- Course materials are sent to reviewers, who use a standard set of guidelines to conduct the review
- The reviewer provides a summary report to PMI, including a standard scoring sheet and recommendation
- PMI reviews the reviewer’s recommendations and makes a determination.
The application process typically takes 30-35 days to complete. REP status is also reevaluated every three years, with PMI making random audits to ensure quality.
It may seem like a long journey, but the results are well worth the effort, and it gets easier (as with everything else) the more familiar you become with it. I’d love to know your experiences and tips concerning the process of PMI® REP®, feel free to comment below!