PMP vs CAPM vs PRINCE2 – Which One’s Right for you?

PMP, CAPM & PRINCE2 are three certifications in the field of Project Management. All three has its own uniqueness and focus with which one can take it up. It’s always a difficult choice to choose among a set of certifications and get clear picture or guidance on which one will suit well.

PMP vs CAPM vs PRINCE2 - Which one is better and why?

One important point which is common and drives certifications is, it triggers the career aspects and salary for the professionals. That’s the very reason why professionals spend their time and money to acquire these certifications/credentials on their name. Let’s discuss and understand different facets of PMP, CAPM and PRINCE2 in this article to have a clarity on how to identify which certification is Best for aspirant

What is common in certifications?

It’s important to know the similarities among certifications before going in to deeper comparisons

Similarities between PMP, CAPM and Prince2


Detailed Layout of Certifications

There are definitely multidimensional views on the basis of which one can choose among these certifications but before going to that and understanding it, it’s important to understand what these exams are all about. Though PRINCE2 has Practitioner level as well for the scope of this article, comparison is only considering its Foundation level into consideration





Exam Questions & Passing % ·         150·         % not defined ·         200·         % not defined ·         75·         50%
Exam Duration 3 Hours 4 Hours 1 Hour
Exam Fees €250/$300 (different for members) €465/$555 (different for members) ~€270/$365 (Varies from institute to institute)
Exam Prerequisites Secondary degree (high school diploma, associate’s degree or the global equivalent)1,500 hours of project experience or23 hours of project management education completed by the time you sit for the exam At least 3 years of experience in the project management field (5 years if you don’t have a four-year degree)At least 4,500 hours experience in leading and directing projects (7,500 hours if you don’t have a four-year degree)35 hours of formal project management education Formal training
Exam Pattern Booking exam on Prometric centreOnlineMultiple Choice Booking exam on Prometric centreOnlineMultiple Choice Usually at Accelerated Training InstituteOnlineMultiple Choice
Exam Source Primarily PMBoK guide but not limited to Primarily PMBoK guide but not limited to The official manual, Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2
Certification Renewal After 5 years After 3 years No expiry

CAPM & PMP certifications are offered by same body i.e. PMI. The comparison between PMI and PRINCE2 certifications will make more sense along with understanding the difference between two PMI certifications. This is because CAPM and PMP are based on same PMBOK guide. Primary difference between two is, CAPM is entry level certification for Project Management whereas PMP is advanced.

 Comparison Between CAPM / PMP / PRINCE2

comparison between PMP, CAPM and Prince2

If we look at this comparison along with the details of certifications discussed in the last section, its very clear that CAPM & PMP is in line with each other whereas PRINCE2 is altogether different thought process. CAPM & PMP certifications are based on PMBOK® the Project Management Book of Knowledge guide. In this guide as well it’s mentioned clearly that “this standard is a guide rather than a specific methodology. One can use different methodologies and tools (e.g., agile, waterfall, PRINCE2) to implement the project management framework”.

PRINCE2, i.e. Projects IN Controlled Environments certification, is process-based project management method that offers a systematic method for delivering a successful project with clear templates, processes, and steps. Similar to PMBOK, even PRINCE2 official manual, mentions and refers PMBOK. The focus of PRINCE2 is a broad, high-level, general framework of project management principles

What is validated in exam?

The following are skills that are validated in these exams.

Validation in exam

Benefits of CAPM, PMP & PRINCE2

benefits of PMP, CAPM and Prince2

Few of the benefits of certifications are as below and but definitely it’s not limited to this list

Irrespective of which certification you choose, there are few common benefits which can be leveraged. Investment should be worth of its return to some extent. This worth can be in terms of better salary, better opportunities, credibility, renowned professional, improved networking or Better subject knowledge i.e. Project Management


With this deep dive into these certifications, two obvious questions are required to be answered and concluded. Those are:

  • Which one is better
  • Which one to opt for

To mention, which one is better and which one to be chosen depends on purely personal prospective of the writer or thought processor. However there are certain aspects which can drive it. Factors which can drive the decision can be:

aspects that factors the decision


Especially between PMP and CAPM, generally CAPM is chosen when eligibility criteria is not met for PMP and need for project management certification is required. Entry level aspirants having interest in going towards Project Management and want to learn Project Management terminology prefer CAPM

Choosing between PMI certification & PRINCE2 depends on following three factors:


One has to access its geography (which certification is well known in that area). We have seen in the comparison that PMI based certifications are more popular in certain geography and PRINCE2 in another. Its important to do this research and then as per eligibility, select the best one for you

Industry & Local environment

Industry (which certification is appreciated more in the industry) and local environment of the organization, plays a great role. There are organizations and industries which believe in one type of methodology. Some industries crave for processes and as far are processes are there, rest all is assumed fine. In those scenarios, PRINCE2 will work better. Similarly where the focus is implementation and execution, PMP and at entry level CAPM will work the best.

Anyone targeting for one certification, these questions will answer which one to target for based on eligibility and other dimensions. On the whole all the certifications has abundance of knowledge on Project Management and well reputed in their own limits.

About Sparsh Goyal

A passionate IT professional, Sparsh Goyal boasts of 4.3+ years of experience. He has worked for various projects under AWS, Google Cloud Platform, Spring Boot, Python, Microservices, RESTful, RESTFUL APIs/SOAP, Scripting, Shell and JAVA. He is also working towards gaining proficiency in Oracle Cloud PaaS, DevOps, SaaS and Docker/Kubernetes. His primary and secondary skills validate his relentless pursuits of expanding his horizon and developing more as an IT person. He boasts of the following certifications: *Google Professional Cloud Security Engineer. *AWS Cloud Solutions Architect Associate. *Oracle certified JAVA programmer.

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