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Scrum vs PMP; which has better real life application?

Today, we will discuss two project management methods Scrum vs PMP, and which one has a better real-life application.

We all know that PMP certification is internationally recognized as the certification of project management professionals. The learning content of PMP certification is project management expertise. It does not only refer to the project management knowledge of a certain industry but the project management expertise that can be applied in many industries and fields.

Today, with the needs of market development, PMP certification also integrates the agile knowledge of current enterprise and personal development. A friend asked: what is agile project management and what is the difference between agile project management and PMP? Let’s introduce it to you.

In fact, the main difference between traditional project management and agile project management lies in the applicable environment and problem-solving ideas. Traditional project management is to solve how to do one thing perfectly at one time through the plan under the condition of relatively certain resources and environment, emphasize following the plan and process, pay attention to the determination of needs as soon as possible, strictly implement the plan, and pay attention to improving efficiency to better achieve the goal. This kind of project methodology is applicable to projects of which the requirements and technology are relatively stable.

On the other hand, Scrum is a kind of work mode that takes people as the core, runs fast in small steps, and realizes value delivery through rapid iteration and rapid feedback. It originally originated in the field of software development, and now it is more applied in the management system of all walks of life as a management concept.

Under the guidance of agile thought, Scrum is an organizational model based on people, collaboration, and common values. Scrum uses rolling wave, iterative and incremental delivery, rapid and flexible response to change, and open communication among teams, stakeholders, and customers.

Scrum is to solve how to timely deliver valuable products and pay attention to value and effect through rapid iteration and rapid feedback in the case of uncertain requirements, many changes, or fast version release cycle. Therefore, there is no inevitable relationship between PMP and Scrum. Under the “dual-mode” parallel enterprise management mode, they complement each other and are integrated and complementary.

Someone may still pose the question: which one has a better real-life application, Scrum vs PMP?

The answer is not a simple A or B choice. The truth is that different projects have different preferences.

1. Innovative products

The business environment of innovative product development is that unpredictability is greater than predictability. For example, the product requirements are not clear. What can be clear is usually the product vision, a general direction, and blueprint. It’s hard to tell what features the product should have. Different people have different ideas. In the process of product development, there are many variables in customer demand, which is difficult to be accurate. What is a customer-satisfied product like? When the product development is completed and the customer is really satisfied, we can know, “Oh, that’s what the customer wants!”

To develop products that satisfy customers, we can’t rely on luck. Just like winning a lottery, it is an ideal and rare situation. The problem we need to solve is how to continuously obtain the customer’s actual experience of the product and make the customer’s ideal product gradually emerge. Therefore, we need to adopt the iterative development method. Each iteration produces working software so that customers can experience our products and give us feedback. Like doing scientific experiments, we first assume that customers like some product features and explore them. Then, through customer experience, we can perceive which production features customers like and which product features they don’t like. Finally, adjust the direction in time according to these perceptions. In this way, repeat the cycle of “exploration, perception, and adjustment”, feel the stone, and cross the river, step by step, collect more and more detailed customer feedback, so as to develop products that satisfy customers.

Scrum is such a development method, which is especially suitable for developing innovative products.

2. Existing product maintenance and support

Existing product maintenance includes fixing defects, adding customized features to the product, and perhaps optimizing software performance. In such a business environment, the requirements are clear and specific, and there is no need to “explore, perceive and adjust”. In this business environment, Scrum can be used, but it is not the optimal solution. When defects are discovered and when customers ask to add new features are unpredictable in advance. When defects are found, they are reported to the development team. The user had an idea and said that I wanted to add such a feature, so he asked the development team to add it. Therefore, in terms of the arrival time of maintenance and support invitations, unpredictability is relatively greater than predictability.

3.“Me-too” product

It is a follow-up product, that is, what new software is available abroad and copied at home. If your competitor has a new product, copy it yourself. Such a business environment is highly predictable. Specifically, the product requirements can be defined at the early stage of development, and the technology of product development can learn from others. In the development process, there are few requirements changes, and most things are determined, so the waterfall is the simplest and practical method. PMP is very thorough about traditional software management methods. If you learn waterfall, it’s best to start with PMP.

4. Summary

The project management method mentioned in PMP is also a general principle. Of course, PMI-ACP has also appeared recently. I learned PMP first, then scrum. The basic principles of management are interlinked. It’s like a park has four gates: East, South, West, and North. You can get started from anywhere. The important thing is to walk in the park and enjoy the scenery. No matter what you learn, you should finally implement “learning for application”.

Back to the beginning. Scrum vs PMP, which should I learn?  You see now that the business environment is different, the problems to be solved are different, and the methods to be adopted are also different.

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