PMP Certification: Initiating Knowledge and Skills

By Cynthia Snyder Stackpole

The Initiating the Project domain is one of five performance domains covered on the PMP (project management professional) certification exam. Of the 200 questions on the PMP exam, the Initiating the Project domain accounts for 13%. Six tasks and six knowledge and skill topics are associated with this domain.

The six tasks associated with Initiating the Project appear in the following table:

Task 1 Perform project assessment based upon available information and
meetings with the sponsor, customer, and other subject matter
experts, in order to evaluate the feasibility of new products or
services within the given assumptions and/or constraints.
Task 2 Define the high-level scope of the project based on the
business and compliance requirements, in order to meet the
customer’s project expectations.
Task 3 Perform key stakeholder analysis using brainstorming,
interviewing, and other data-gathering techniques, in order to
ensure expectation alignment and gain support for the project.
Task 4 Identify and document high-level risks, assumptions, and
constraints based on current environment, historical data, and/or
expert judgment, in order to identify project limitations and
propose an implementation approach.
Task 5 Develop the project charter by further gathering and analyzing
stakeholder requirements, in order to document project scope,
milestones, and deliverables.
Task 6 Obtain approval for the project charter from the sponsor and
customer (if required), in order to formalize the authority
assigned to the project manager and gain commitment and acceptance
for the project.

The six knowledge and skill topics are

  • Skills to develop a cost benefit analysis

  • Skills to develop a business case

  • Knowledge of project-selection criteria

  • Skills associated with stakeholder-identification techniques

  • Skills associated with risk-identification techniques

  • Knowledge of the elements of a project charter