Olby Shaju , PMP, PfMP, SAFe SPC, MCP – MSP and Project Server 2013

Advices on how to fill PfMP® application

Posted on March 12, 2020 by Olby | PPM

To attain (PfMP)® credential, there are two levels of evaluation that needs to be cleared. This is in continuation of lessons learned for PfMP® exam. Also refer the next blog on Portfolio management knowledge areas, process groups and processes.

  • Level 1 —Panel Review: The initial evaluation occurs through an extensive application review during which a panel of portfolio managers will assess your professional experience based on your responses to the Portfolio Management Experience Summaries provided on the application.
  • Level 2 —Multiple-Choice Examination: On approval of Panel Review the next step of evaluation is the multiple-choice examination, which will test your competence in both situational and scenario-based questions.

I’ve heard that lot of people who actually fail panel review are given only one more chance to reapply with updated answers. Here we will see the Level 1 – Panel review with application preparation.

Professional Business Experience

You will have to show eight years of professional business experience to fulfill the eligibility requirements of the PfMP® certification. Record a summary of your professional business experience as part of the application. You have to show 48–84 months of portfolio management experience to meet the four to eight-year eligibility requirement for portfolio management experience.

In the business experience you’ve to show the number of portfolios that you’ve worked to cover the 48 to 84 months experience. Here you need to provide the portfolio duration, number of projects/ programs, value and brief summary on portfolio alignment to organization strategy in 150 to 200 words. Here mainly you will describe the goal of the portfolio with organization strategy.

Portfolio Management Experience Summaries

Each knowledge area will have two options (Option A or Option B). You need to write an essay or summary using option A or B and then map it to show in which professional business experience you got this experience. The related options for each knowledge area are shown below:

  1. Portfolio Strategic Alignment Experience Summary
    1. Option A – Identifying and prioritizing portfolio criteria and evaluating portfolio component priorities based on the organization’s strategic goals and objectives or
    2. Option B – Creating and/or updating a high-level portfolio roadmap using scenarios that helped the organization to align and operationalize the portfolio in accordance with the organization’s strategic goals and objectives
  2. Portfolio Governance Experience Summary
    1. Option A – Securing authorization to execute the portfolio through identification and justification of recommendations regarding the portfolio or
    2. Option B – Ensuring effective and efficient portfolio management by implementing and/or optimizing the portfolio management plan including key components applicable to your portfolio
  3. Portfolio Performance Experience Summary
    1. Option A – Managing portfolio changes to optimize resource utilization and/or ensure portfolio effectiveness and efficiency or
    2. Option B – Evaluating continuous progress toward the achievement of business or strategic goals through the collection, consolidation, and measurement of portfolio value
  4. Portfolio Risk Management Experience Summary
    1. Option A – Developing and/or updating the portfolio risk management plan or
    2. Option B – Enabling the organization to capitalize on an opportunity(ies) or manage threat(s) based on portfolio risk management processes, methods, and/or techniques
  5. Portfolio Communications Management Experience Summary
    1. Option A – Developing, and/or updating a portfolio communication strategy and plan or
    2. Option B – Engaging stakeholders to set and manage expectations and influence the success of the portfolio

Guidelines on how to document Experience Summary

  • Read the handbook and standard portfolio management before starting to write the portfolio experience summary.
  • Portfolio experience summary or essay need to be written in 300 to 500 words. In general experience summary is nothing but writing a story on how you managed the portfolio to align with the organizational strategy.
  • When you define your portfolio, it defines components (i.e. projects, programs, ongoing operations, portfolio and other work) and how they were grouped to align with goals.
  • Use more practical information such as value ($), number of years, number of resources, number of projects/ programs/ operations/ portfolios, stakeholder roles, increase in productivity in % or value, any revenue increase, decrease in wastage or % growth.
  • Remember portfolios have an organizational scope that changes with the strategic objectives of the organization.
  • Explain how you were balancing conflicting demands between programs and projects, allocates resources (e.g., people, funding) based on organizational priorities and capacity, and manages to achieve the benefits identified.
  • Include references to Portfolio Charter, Portfolio Strategic Plan, Portfolio Roadmap, PMO, Portfolio Governance, Portfolio Sponsors, Portfolio Stakeholders, Portfolio Risk Management Plan, Portfolio Communication Management Plan and how they were used in your Portfolio.

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