Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on PMI Project Management Professional (PMP)
Posted on
November 11, 2022

Salary Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

PMP is the premiere project management certification.

In the movie The Mexican, mob fixer Leroy sums up his role in a complicated delivery scheme like this: "I'm here to regulate funkiness." To ensure, in other words, that everything goes according to plan. It's the sort of thing that a project manager is hired to do: keep track of goals and timelines and get everyone across the finish line.

Project management as a discipline crosses most modern industries, but information technology claims a sizable share of professional project managers. And while there are other credentials more specific to IT, PMI's Project Management Professional (PMP) cert (No. 8 on our most recent Salary Survey 75 list) always has a strong presence in our annual Salary Survey.

Here's what the salary picture looks like for PMP holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $139,550
Median Annual Salary: $136,250
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 14.3 percent
Very Satisfied: 23.2 percent
Satisfied: 44.6 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 16.1 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 1.8 percent

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $89,140
Median Annual Salary: $89,060
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 3.4 percent
Very Satisfied: 7 percent
Satisfied: 44.8 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 44.8 percent
Not At All Satisfied: [No responses]

The largest single body of PMP holders to participate in the survey is made up of U.S. residents (66.7 percent of those surveyed), but we also heard from credential holders in 13 other countries: Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Qatar, Singapore, Switzerland, Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.

Project management as a profession is somewhat less dominated by men than most IT (or IT-adjacent) occupations: 11.2 percent of PMP holders who responded to the survey are women, with 86.5 percent who are men, and 2.3 percent who chose not to identify their gender. This tends not to be a field where youth is served, with more than 60 percent of respondents age 45 or older, either between the ages of 45 and 54 (47.6 percent of respondents) or between the ages of 55 and 64 (13.1 percent). Even among the remaining 40 percent of credential holders, nearly all are between the ages of 35 and 44 (32.1 percent of those surveyed), with just 3.6 percent younger than 35 (all between the ages of 25 and 34) and the final 3.6 percent between the ages of 65 and 74.

More than 95 percent of PMP holders who responded to the survey have an educational background that includes time spent at a college or university. The highest level of education completed by most PMP holders is either a master's degree (52.4 percent of respondents), bachelor's degree (36.9 percent), doctorate (3.6 percent), or professional degree (2.3 percent). The outliers are the 1.2 percent of survey respondents who exited the realm of formal education after completing some level of post-high school technical training, and the 3.6 percent who topped out with a high school diploma.

An impressive 94.5 percent of PMP holders who responded to the survey are employed full-time, with the remaining 5.5 percent either working in part-time positions (3.3 percent), taking a sabbatical (1.1 percent), or unemployed (1.1 percent). Among those who have full-time jobs, most have either a standard 40-hour work week (32.9 percent of respondents) or put in between 41 and 50 hours per week (51.8 percent). Of the remaining 15 percent of credential holders employed full-time, 4.7 percent work between 31 and 39 hours per week, 1.2 percent put in between 20 and 30 hours per week, and 9.4 percent are on the clock for more than 50 hours per week.

Project management typically requires a lot of direct interaction with other individuals, but it would appear that much of that interaction has shifted to video streaming since the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 55 percent of respondents are spending their entire work schedule at home, putting in either 40 hours per week without leaving the house (18.8 percent), or more than 40 hours per week (36.4 percent). In the middle are those who work from home either between 31 and 39 hours per week (7.1 percent of respondents), between 21 and 30 hours per week (5.9 percent), or between 10 and 20 hours per week (7.1 percent). Just 24.7 percent of those surveyed are spending most of their time in a more traditional workplace setting, working from home fewer than 10 hours per week.

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of PMP holders we heard from (26 percent of respondents) are employed at the senior specialist level. The rest, in descending order, are either managers (21.9 percent of those surveyed), senior managers (20.8 percent), directors (9.4 percent), specialists (also 9.4 percent), executives (6.3 percent), or rank-and-file employees (6.2 percent).

A notable 60.4 percent of PMP holders who responded to the survey are IT veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (3.1 percent of those surveyed), between 3 and 5 years (14.6 percent), between 6 and 8 years (12.5 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (9.4 percent).

Finally, here's the view of PMP holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification:
Several times a day: 42.7 percent
Several times a week: 36.5 percent
Several times a month: 13.5 percent
Occasionally: 7.3 percent
Rarely: [No responses]

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills.
Strongly agree: 37.5 percent
Agree: 47.9 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 11.5 percent
Disagree: 2.1 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 25 percent
Agree: 52.1 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 17.7 percent
Disagree: 5.2 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 25 percent
Agree: 50 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 22.9 percent
Disagree: 2.1 percent
Strongly Disagree: [No responses]






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