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Delay of PMI-ACP Pilot Results

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101Many of us had heard the rumor that PMI was going to delay the PMI-ACP pilot results until early next year, and today this was confirmed. The truth is, delays happen. Everyone who has managed a project (waterfall or Agile) has encountered unforeseen issues, so I’m actually pretty forgiving about this, but the communication has been a disappointment.

One of the keys to a successful Agile project is transparency. The team posts its progress for stakeholders to see, and updates are as clear and forthcoming as the deliverables. If there are problems, the team is open and honest about them and involves the stakeholders. They work together to discover the underlying causes and find solutions.

And that brings us to the problem. PMI has not been very open, and in the absence of transparency, rumors began to fly. First was the rumor that too many people passed the initial exam and that PMI was struggling to rationalize the results and the curve. Second was the rumor that they waited too long, and that too many people were on vacation for the holidays. Then there was the rumor that they had problems with the vendor who was involved in the process and that they needed more time to sort this out.

The point is, they are all just rumors. We don’t know exactly what happened, but the communication from PMI was vague and opaque. Part of it read:

“While we originally targeted the end of the fourth quarter for the release of candidate scores, we have unfortunately encountered a delay in our post-pilot process that will consequently postpone the release of scores to the second week of January (week of 9 January). At this time, we expect that pass/fail notices will go out to all of our pilot participants.”

This doesn’t give the stakeholders and customers very much information. We aren’t told the nature of the delay, much less how they plan to address it. Instead, we are simply told that they are going to delay notification and shoot for the week of January 9, 2012.

Again, I’m understanding of delays. I delayed publication of my book (largely to match PMI’s published schedule for the exam), but it does feel like PMI could do a better job of embracing Agile principles, communicating more clearly and openly, and keeping their stakeholders well-informed. It’s almost never too late to start improving project communication.

If you have been involved in the PMI-ACP pilot program, how do you feel about this?

12 responses to “Delay of PMI-ACP Pilot Results”

  1. Avatar Henrik Stadler says:

    Spot on! I just agree with you!

  2. Avatar Sampath says:

    Not too happy with PMI on this. I gave my exam in the last week of November, just before the Pilot program ended, so, my wait has been just a month.
    There are folks who have give the exam in Sep and Oct and each week’s delay would be quite a pain… and not knowing the reason for the delay is even worse.

  3. Avatar Rory McCorkle, PMI says:

    Andy, Sampath, and Henrik,

    Thanks for your thoughts and comments. For those that I haven’t spoken to before, I am the Product Owner for the PMI-ACP.

    First, I will apologize again on behalf of the project team and PMI for the late communication. We certainly should have communicated the potential for the delay earlier in December. Naturally, we will endeavor to communicate more clearly and transparently in the future.

    Second, while it is not in PMI’s interest to directly respond to rumors that have surfaced, the fact of the matter is that it simply took more time than expected to perform the statistical analysis on the pilot data, use that data to make necessary adjustments, and finalize the pilot participant’s exam results. That said, we are on track for delivery of score reports early next week, as mentioned in our e-mail in late December.

    Finally, if there are further concerns, please feel free to contact PMI Customer Care (customercare@pmi.org) or contact me directly (Twitter: @rorymccorkle or rory.mccorkle@pmi.org). We value customer input and appreciate both Velociteach and the pilot participants’ enthusiasm for this new certification.

    Rory McCorkle
    Product Manager – Credentials
    PMI

    • Andy Crowe Andy Crowe says:

      Thanks for the reply, Rory. Overall it was a very positive experience. Thanks for your leadership in all of this. We’re looking forward to helping this to grow with PMI!

  4. Avatar Cindy Shelton says:

    The lack of communication from PMI is quite embarrassing and I struggle hard to embrace PMI after the years of being out of sorts with them on Agile practices.

    I took the test on Sep 15th, the first day it was available, and can tell you I don’t remember a thing about the test.

    I keep looking and hoping I get a GOOD notice.

  5. Avatar Jerome says:

    Results out today!!

    🙂

    (I passed!!!)

    Cheers, all! Good luck!

    – Jerome

  6. Andy Crowe Andy Crowe says:

    Congrats to all of you! I passed as well. Champagne all around!

  7. Cheers, y’all! What a relief! 😉 I was especially glad to receive my confirmation from PMI today because I sat for the pilot exam without studying, as a way to “test myself” to see how I’m coming along. I’m still learning… always learning.

    So, a champagne toast today to all those who have helped me learn so much already! Let’s continue… and “Press ON!” together. Hear hear!

    Classmaker (Atlanta).

  8. Avatar Rory McCorkle, PMI says:

    I also wish congratulations all around!

    @Cindy – thank you for your follow up. Certainly can understand your disappointment with the communications, but hope that your positive notice today helps.

    Rory McCorkle
    PMI

  9. Avatar Morgan says:

    I am taking my exam at the end of the month. Does anyone have any tips for studying/passing this exam?

    • Hi @Morgan, Until Andy’s book is available, follow the PMI recommended reading list. I’d say start with Mike Cohn’s material if you haven’t read/reviewed lately. Focus on the why’s first, then the how’s. Why do we have standups? Why retrospectives? Why make big, visible charts and lists and boards? That will lead you to deeper understanding of how (and who and what and when and where)…and increase your ability (in practice) to innovate and adapt–even invent–in order to amplify our ability to deliver, to make and keep commitments, and to respond to change.  

      BTW, If you are on LinkedIn, there are several collaborative study discussion groups. 

      Go for it!!!

      Cheers,
      Ken ‘classmaker’ Ritchie (Atlanta)
      PMI-ACP, PMP, CSM, etc.

  10. Avatar Tante Waileka says:

    Don’t get too excited, an idiot could pass the PMP given the low percentage rating for a pass. I’m assuming that is also true for the ACP. Also, since these certifications EXPIRE, how valuable are they really? I’m in my 60s and have a Six Sigma MASTER black belt, a Certified Quality Manager certification, Oracle AppDev, Solaris SysEngr, MCT, WinRunner CPI, and a recently expired Certified ScrumMaster, but the only thing that really matters to any potential clients out there is my PhD in Organizational Management Healthcare focus. You get a PhD the certifications (that EXPIRE) are really meaningless… I am swamped with billable work at 150/hour… cause I have a PMP (which I do) or because of my PhD? you figure it out. This is all just a game… ps Mr. Crowe I hope you got your book on safari.informit.com and also available for the Kindle or I won’t be buying it… I have 600 books on my original kindle which these days I reference on my Motorola Xoom. I don’t buy hard-cover, not in the past five years. Thank you Amazon!!!

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