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The 2008 Learning In Practice Awards

“Once you’ve gone through the exam and are certified, you have to maintain 60 professional PDUs in a three-year period. The average cost of maintaining that with our current employee base of 250 employees, over a three-year period, it’s $1.5 million. And as you get new employees in who are also PMPs, that number can’t go anywhere but up,” said Alan A. Malinchak, vice president and chief learning officer at ManTech International.

When ManTech University was established in 2006 Malinchak said it began to develop a variety of high-quality online courses. There are nearly 200 currently, all of which were created by subject matter experts.

“How can we use these same courses to reduce our certification expenses for PMPs? We contacted PMI and found out what it would take to acquire status as a registered education provider,” he said.

ManTech submitted live or online courses to PMI for use as PDUs and then hired an external PMP to evaluate existing courses and determine which fit knowledge areas important to maintain that credential.

Malinchak said after working with the external consultant to determine what worked, didn’t work and how to bring the courses that didn’t work up to speed, the company will have roughly 100 courses for more than 125 hours of PDUs at the end of 2008. That’s enough course work for six years of learning, which means no PMP has to go to an external vendor to maintain certification.

ManTech plans to import its PMP certification maintenance process to other certifications such as the Computer Information Security Systems Professional (CISSP). And Malinchak said if employees are both PMP- and CISSP-certified, the same courses count to maintain either certification.

“Multiply those cost savings over a five-year period: We’re projecting to save the company almost $8 million,” he said.


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