Most online sources claim that one does not need any certifications to qualify to work in the construction industry. However, relative to an apprentice, other specialty positions in the industry do have something to gain from specialized certifications that are offered by accredited bodies.
Construction projects are complex, high-risk, low margin undertakings that require careful planning and management to be called a success. It should not come as a surprise that most construction projects suffer from delays, cost overruns, implementation errors, environmental catastrophes, and more. This raises the question of whether there are ways that management can somehow minimize the possibility of those problems occurring across projects.
In this article, we will discuss whether specialized certifications provide the knowledge and skills that construction managers need to carry out more successful projects.
Why get a construction management certification?
Construction management certifications are viewed as credentials that benefit the recipient’s career. Construction professionals are mainly on the look-out for construction management certifications if they are interested in:
- Advancing in the company they currently work in
- Refreshing/updating their understanding of current management methodologies
- Transitioning into the management field
However, construction professionals aren’t the only beneficiary of certifications. Recent graduates with some practical understanding of modern construction software could also benefit from the added value that these certifications provide. Most construction software companies derive their own certifications that emerging professionals could acquire to get that little extra on their resumes.
Let’s dive into the role of a construction management certification for each of the aforementioned interests.
1. A means of getting promoted
Please note that management certifications do not guarantee a promotion. They are only one of the many indirect factors that could lead to a promotion.
Education and experience are your typical drivers of pay. The higher your level of education and experience, the higher the billing rate. However, between these two, we also have certifications that according to studies carry tremendous potential for project managers. Baseline Magazine in a study of 2,000 project manager salaries has found wages to jump by 24% when individuals own an accredited certification. This particular study observed the role of general project management certifications, such as the “Project Management Professional (PMP)” and “Certified Associate Project Manager (CAPM)”.
However, there is reason to believe that a similar impact should be observed across individuals in possession of construction management certifications, including the “Certified Construction Manager (CCM)” and “National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET)”.
While PMP and CAPM are globally recognized and universally applied, specific construction management certifications are tailored to go into the specific challenges and insights of the construction industry. This means they teach management techniques designed to help professionals run construction projects more efficiently so as to minimize cost overruns, delays, and other commonly observed challenges.
2. Staying up-to-date with the latest trends
Management certifications require individuals to renew them every 6, 12, 24, and/or 36 months.
The main reason behind this requirement is the fact that management philosophy is continuously evolving. Technological advancements are disrupting the ways managers plan, execute, and forecast their projects. For example, in the past 5 to 10 years of automation technology has changed the workflow of construction managers. Repetitive and manual tasks such as filling out payment documents, tracking timesheets, managing deadlines, and many more can be completely optimized and done by modern software.
Handle has built-in tools designed to enhance current workflows so construction professionals can focus on tasks that actually matter.
On a similar note, other technological advancements, such as autonomous equipment and advanced materials have taken the construction industry by storm. And if you and the business you work in have not taken these advancements into consideration than better start looking into certifications to help brush your understanding of them.
Accrediting bodies, like the American Concrete Institute and the National Association of Corrosion Engineers are continuously trying to keep up with the advancements so as to provide support for professionals looking to adopt these technologies. Therefore, if you are a construction manager looking to develop a better understanding of current trends than construction management software is definitely something you want to look into.
3. Transitioning into construction management
Whether you’re an industry native or someone coming from a completely different background, construction management certifications are a means of smoothening the transition. The Construction Management Association of America offers credentials for professional construction managers. Among these credentials are their accredited Construction Manager Certification Institute’s (CMCI), Certified Construction Manager® (CCM®) certification program that are described as the “gold standard” of the industry. The program is designed to enhance the management techniques of professionals in accordance with the latest construction trends and technologies.
According to The Construction Management Association of America, construction management certifications help professionals by:
- Increasing professional marketability
- Displaying leadership and professionalism
- Expanding knowledge and understanding of markets, and
- Growing a network of professionals
Accordingly, whether you’re looking to advance in your career, transition into the construction industry of even just brushing up on your skills, construction management certifications are one of the best ways to go about it. Start diving into the certifications that we have listed in this article and see which one suits your needs and wants. We promise, with hard work, success is at the palm of your hands.
Etnik Blakaj is the CEO of Attotime.com, a simple time and location tracking software designed to help construction professionals keep better track of their projects.