Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Register
FAQs
Share |

This page is intended as a resource to answer some of the common questions directed to our National Office. If the answer you are seeking does not appear here, kindly contact the National Office by telephone: 011 257-8003, or email to: admin@projectmanagement.org.za 

1. QUESTIONS RELATED TO PMSA AS A PROFESSIONAL BODY
1.1 What is the purpose of a professional body?
Professional bodies exist for a variety of purposes. In essence they create an enabling environment for professional development in a discipline, and growing the maturity of that discipline by contributing to its body of knowledge, its relevance, governing principles and accessibility to new and existing practitioners. A professional body serves as the impartial, autonomous representative of its various stakeholders in matters related to the discipline.
1.2 What is the difference between a statutory body and non-statutory body and which one is PMSA?

PMSA is a non-statutory body. This means that the body was formed, not through an act of legislation, but in response to a need identified by a collective of practitioners. Membership to PMSA is voluntary - no law compels you to be a member. However, any professional body must fulfil the requirements of being organised according to articles of association / a memorandum of incorporation, have a constitution and a code of conduct which its members are required to subscribe to and fulfil other guidelines required by the Companies Act in terms of Not for Profit Companies.

In addition to being non-statutory, PMSA is also autonomous, which means it does not have a parent association, nor is it a parent association to another body. As an autonomous entity, PMSA does not enter into any agreements that would compromise its impartiality or objectivity. It reserves the right to accept or decline applications for membership or association.

By contrast, allied organisations such as SACPCMP and ECSA and their voluntary associations do have a statutory component to them. For example, the SACPCMP came about in response to the SACPCMP Act which calls for a 'juristic person to be known as the South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions; to provide for the registration of professionals, candidates and specified categories in the project and construction management professions; to provide for the regulation of the relationship between the South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions and the Council for the Built Environment; and to provide for matters connected therewith.' Membership of relevant practitioners to the SACPCMP is therefore compulsory.           

1.3 What are PMSA's rights and responsibilities as a SAQA-recognised Professional Body? 
 
1.4 What is the difference between PMSA and the PMI SA Chapter?
 
1.5 In which fora does PMSA represent the interests of its membership?  
 
1.6 Can companies be PMSA members?
 
1.7 What are the benefits of being a member of PMSA?

The following table summarises PMSA's individual member benefits:

Member Benefit

Ass

Full

Prof

Networking opportunities at PMSA branch and interest group events

X

X

X

Access to topical speakers and project management thought leaders at PMSA events

X

X

X

Discounts to attend PMSA Branch and interest group meetings

X

X

X

Discounts on books purchased from the PMSA bookstore

X

X

X

Discounts in delegate fees at PMSA National and Regional conferences

X

X

X

Access to knowledge resources developed / negotiated for members (special reports / templates)

X

X

X

Representation, through PMSA committees, on relevant statutory and industry-related bodies

X

X

X

Access to PMSA’s library of industry standards and books

X

X

X

Access to the membership zone of the PMSA website, where project management resources are made available

X

X

X

Access to member recruitment system. Free loading of CV and free advertising of positions

X

X

X

No or reduced entry fees for submissions to the PMSA Awards Programmes

X

X

X

Bookstore requests for import via PMSA bookstore (from specific publishers)

X

X

X

Official membership certificate that can be used in tenders and work applications

 

X

X

Invitation to participate in opinion articles and knowledge event content for profile-building

 

X

X

Permission to use post-nominal: M.PMSA and PM.PMSA in signature

X

X


1.5 What is the difference between the membership status levels at PMSA?
PMSA has structured its status levels to accommodate members at different career stages.

Associate Members needn't have knowledge or experience in project management but are not afforded voting rights. They enjoy most of the other benefits associated with membership. This membership category is designed to introduce aspiring practitioners to the PM fraternity and guide them through the ranks as they gain knowledge and experience.
Student and retiree members are also accommodated under this category.

Full Members require an initial degree and a minimum of three years' experience working as a project manager, applying the principles of a recognised PM methodology.

At the Professional Member level applicants are expected to have an initial degree in any field and then acquired a higher level of learning specifically in project management. This demonstrates a commitment to ongoing learning in the field and keeping one's practise of the discipline up-to-date. In addition, Professional Members would have accumulated a minimum of ten years' experience working as a project manager, applying the principles of a recognised PM methodology. There is a further requirement of applicants, that they have made a contribution to the profession in a recognisable manner, such as contributing their time and skills to a development project, volunteered their services as a mentor or to assist a professional body, written articles for project management journals, magazines or conferences, contributed to standards development or representivity of the broader community, or otherwise sought to share their knowledge and expertise with others. 
           
1.6 What activities are there for members?

As part of the mandate to share knowledge and increase opportunities for knowledge transfer, the PMSA National Office and regional branches arrange regular presentations featuring case studies, lessons learnt, good practices, methodologies by fellow practitioners, researchers, authors and other role-players in the profession.

In addition, there are workshops, national and regional conferences and other ad hoc events offered at discounted rates to PMSA members.

Where possible, PMSA extends benefits that our relationships afford us, such as research completed by similar organisations, publications and discounts, from time to time.

Unfortunately most PMSA activities take place in Johannesburg, Durban, Pretoria and Cape Town. In the past there have been numerous efforts to extend activity to other areas, however we have not been able to sustain critical mass in terms of volunteer support in those areas. The option does, however, always remain for organising regional representation and interested parties are encouraged to come forward to assist to expand the organisation's reach.

A similar phenomenon applies to interest groups. Over the years, PMSA has collaborated with allied organisations and companies to host events specific to an aspect of the discipline, such as IT project management, Project Governance etc. As these activities are mostly volunteer-led, it is challenging to sustain them. Again, there is always a possibility that with sufficient interest a practice community or interest group can be developed. 

1.7 Does PMSA membership afford me a title?
           
1.8 What is the relationship between PMSA and other professional bodies for project management and related industries?

The professional body environment is ever-changing and overlap is inevitable. This creates potential for collaboration between PMSA and other professional bodies in project management, IT, construction and engineering and many others. As an autonomous body, it is important that PMSA applies the same principle to all collaboration invitations with other bodies. In essence this means that where there is an opportunity for mutual benefit, the relevant parties will agree on the terms of that interaction without entering into a formal agreement. This leaves scope for any of the following:

  • Hosting combined member events
  • Collaborating on projects that will benefit both sets of members
  • Undertaking to recognise each others' CPD-generating activities
  • Sharing 'products' such as publications for mutual benefit
  • Issuing invitations and extending member discounts for conferences and seminars

The underlying principle is that the relationship does not involve financial gain for either party, but rather reciprocity.

In some cases, reciprocity agreements are formalised, for example PMSA and PMI's global operation have a cooperative agreement that is designed to benefit both parties and does not compromise PMSA's autonomy in recognising the work, offerings and products of other global PM bodies.                     

 
2. QUESTIONS RELATED TO TRAINING, EDUCATION & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
2.1 What training does PMSA offer?

PMSA does not offer training. Instead, it runs a programme called the Registered Education and Training Provider Programme (RETP) which affords training bodies, training consultants, in-company training departments and tertiary institutions the opportunity to have their offerings reviewed by PMSA according to a checklist of requirements (see the education and training section of the website for more details) and then be listed on the PMSA website and make use of a range of benefits afforded this category of membership. Please click here for a list of RETP's

2.2 What should I study if I want to be a project manager?

This is a very difficult question to answer as it depends on so many factors. There are some articles that were published in a career magazine that will answer the question to some extent, yet possibly pose even more in return. Also consult the professional development pages of this website to obtain a sense of the bigger picture in terms of becoming a PM.

Article 1

Article 2                    

2.3 What should I do to progress my career in project management?
PMSA is developing a career path that explains the career progression opportunities for project, program and portfolio managers, as well as support staff. The purpose of this framework is to provide a generic view of possible progressions as well as the qualifications, designations, accreditations, knowledge, skill and experience associated with each stage. The final career path framework will be released in 2014.
 
2.4 What is the difference between certifcations, accreditations and qualifications in project management?
 There is some confusion about the differences between these and to add to it, different organisations may attribute different meanings to the same term. In essence, a qualification is the outcome of a formal course of study at a tertiary institution. In South Africa, a qualification would be considered an outcome registered with the South African Qualifications Authority on a particular NQF level, or the outcome of a course of study registered by a private higher education institution and assigned an NQF equivalency, based on a SAQA assessment. A certification, in turn, could be the outcome of a short course (non-degree)offered by a tertiary institution, private higher education institution or private training provider. Certification may also refer to the outcome of having been tested on or otherwise meeting the requirements associated with a particular industry standard or product.
An accreditation is typically associated with a combination of knowledge and experience and attaining an accreditation would require some combination of having illustrated competence, working experience and displaying theoretical knowledge. One usually only applies to complete an accreditation when you wish to formalise your combined career and learning achievements with an industry-recognised credential.
2.5 How do I earn continuing professional development points like CPDs and PDUs

Different professions and their related certifications and accreditations may require that individuals maintain a commitment to their professional development. This is frequently measured by a points system, with the individual accumulating points by engaging in various activities. In order to maintain a professional accreditation or registration, a specified number of points are stipulated per reporting period.

Kindly note that PMSA does not currently have a system whereby its members need to accumulate professional development points, but we are aware that many of our members hold such certifications or registrations and that their participation in PMSA activities would enable them to earn points.

CPDs
One example is Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points required by engineers registered with the Engineering Council South Africa (ECSA) and that body's member associations.

PMSA is not a voluntary association (VA) of ECSA as it exists to serve professionals outside of, as well as within the engineering profession. PMSA is thus not in a position to validate its activities in terms of ECSA's CPD requirements. However, where there is sufficient demand and PMSA is in a financial position to do so PMSA does seek validation of its events by a voluntary association. For example, the programme of presentations a the PMSA National Biennial Conference is recognised as holding value for engineer who are tasked with the role of project manager. At the conclusion of the national conference, PMSA supplies the full conference programme, speaker descriptions, evaluation form feedback and various other information to an ECSA VA for validation. An authorised person then conducts the assessment and if successful, will have the VA issue a code against which the CPD points may be claimed. This code is communicated to PMSA conference delegates as soon asit becomes available. There is a payment required from PMSA to the VA so there must be evidence of demand fr th CDPs before PMSA engages in the process.

PDUs
A second example is the requirmeent of those with PMI credentials to earn Profesisonal Development Units. Kindly read this document for advice on how you can optimise your PMSA activities towards PDU credits.


 
Contact us for more information            
           

PMSA Platinum Recognised Education and Training Providers 
      

       

    

 

 

 PMSA Corporate Members