Ever since I got into product marketing and management, I’ve been recommending a product marketing certification to anyone looking to expand their skill set.
Yes, you can grow and gain more skills without getting certified. However, there is no substitute for the knowledge you gain through a bona fide product management certification course.
Part of the reason for this is the ever-changing product management industry. New parameters, trends, and technologies are changing how we approach the practice.
Because of this, online certifications from even last year are not relevant in 2021.
Project management certification programs are an exception to that.
Once you pass a certification course, you will be a certified product manager with in-depth knowledge of the subject. However, your knowledge won’t stay limited to what you learned in that particular course.
Almost every certification program requires you to learn about new developments and retake the exam. This ensures that you stay up to date with each new change in the industry.
It’s necessary for a product marketing industry professional like me to stay up to speed with developments in product management strategy, product development ideas, and new product launches. This is the only way to keep from becoming obsolete and letting important industry trends pass you by.
It’s also the best way to increase your knowledge and learn about the various nuances of product management.
The expertise you gain from these product management certifications can help you single-handedly grow and scale enterprises. Coupled with years of experience in growing product companies, these certifications provided with me the hands-on skills and practical knowledge that led to me launching Squibler, a writing software.
In this article, I’ll she some light on the top 9 product management certifications you can attain in 2021.
Let’s dive right in.
What Are Product Management Certificates?
Product management certifications are documents issued by PM authorities that provide proof of an individual’s knowledge of the subject.
Some of the core competencies that you can gain through these certifications include:
- Detailing, implementing, and analyzing product success metrics
- Market research and customer need assessment
- Product lifecycle development, idea generation, and revenue and pricing estimation
- Product roadmap planning and user testing
- Technical product development skills
These skills are a requisite for any experienced product manager. However, each area can be approached in newer, more efficient ways.
This is where product management certifications come into play.
The product manager certifications I’ve detailed in this list will be helpful for both experienced managers looking to upskill themselves, as well as, new managers looking to advance their careers.
Why Product Manager HQ for Product Management Certification
A product management certification in 2021 has to be detailed, up-to-date on the latest industry developments, and insightful. Product Manager HQ has several certifications that tick all those boxes.
PMHQ has a range of in-depth certifications that cover topics such as product management, product lifecycle, product development, creating product roadmaps, and advanced project management.
Their One Week PM certification provides the ideal launching pad for a product management career. The best thing about this certification is that even veteran product managers will find this useful in advancing their careers.
Each PMHQ certification consists of many learning modules that include interviews and insights from the top industry experts. Once you pass the certification exam, you’ll gain access to the world’s biggest Slack community for product managers.
The Product Manager HQ promises detailed certifications, valuable insights, and unique skill development opportunities for all new and existing product managers.
Top 9 Product Management Certifications Online
Product management is a diverse area of study and one certification may not cover all the skills you need to become a high-level product management expert.
To give you a better picture of all the certifications you can take to expand your skills, here’s a list of the top 9 product management certifications in 2021.
1. One Week PM by Product Manager HQ
Price: $197 & $497
Duration: 7 days
One Week PM is one of the most in-demand certifications for product managers in the United States.
It’s a 7-day certification that dives deep into the essentials of product management. For that reason, it’s easily the best starter course for anyone looking to bolster their PM skills.
One Week PM focuses on the practical implementation of acquired skills. It teaches beginners how they can put together their own product management projects.
The week-long course starts with the fundamental roles, practical skills, and methodologies that come with being a product manager. After that, you learn user research, conducting interviews, defining product specs, and developing timelines.
The certification then goes into prototyping and performing usability tests.
Finally, One Week PM teaches you how to create full product roadmaps, as well as, the marketing and tech fundamentals of product management.
As a bonus, you also learn how to perform well in PM interviews.
The premium package comes with lifetime access to the course, one-on-one mentorship, and access to a massive PM community.
To learn more about the course, visit One Week PM by Product Manager HQ.
2. One Week Technical PM by Product Manager HQ
Duration: 7 days
One Week Technical PM is the ultimate certification to prop your technical product management career. The 7-day certification was designed to help aspiring technical product managers to learn the fundamental technical skills necessary to set up their own projects.
The certification course is taught by one of the leading product owners in the world, Dhaval Bhatt. He has spent over 15 years leading PM teams while also directing UC Berkeley's Data Science program.
The One Week Technical PM certification course gathers over 140 lectures compiled in 6 hours of content.
It starts with the basic methodologies and skills involved in the area, then it covers software architecture, product analytics, security, and prototyping. In the end, you learn the frameworks and methodologies for answering TPM interview questions.
Technical background or previous experience with product management are not required to enroll in the course. Therefore, this certification is ideal for individuals looking to transition to a technical role in product management, regardless of the current knowledge level.
Visit One Week Technical PM by Product Manager HQ to learn more about the certification.
3. Product Management Certification by Product School
Duration: 8 weeks
The Product Management Certification provides all the knowledge you need to become a PM professional. If you’re starting out in product management, this is the ideal certification for you to learn the ropes.
The first stage of the course teaches beginners how to assess target opportunities and determine target customers. In the second stage, you’ll learn how to build successful software products from scratch and how to launch them into the market.
The best thing about this certification is that it focuses solely on building and managing digital products. It features a training program that prepares students for modern product management challenges.
Product Management Certification is backed by instructors who have years of field experience in software product management.
The product management packages at Product School sell out fast. If you’re looking to sign up, make sure to do it early on.
To learn more about the course, visit Product Manager Certification by Product School.
4. Professional Scrum Foundations Training by Scrum.org
Price: Available via quote
Duration: 2 days
The Professional Scrum Foundations Training certification is a comprehensive program for product managers looking to delve into Scrum principles.
The entire course is to train professionals for the Professional Scrum Master | Certification Exam.
For two days, you’ll learn Agile Scrum fundamentals and their practical application. The theory side is followed by a team-based exercise that asks students to work in a series of Sprints to develop a product. The parameters include considering the real-world implications of their decisions.
Overall, the course is for product managers looking to explore PM via Agile Scrum methodologies.
To learn more about the course, visit Professional Scrum Foundations Training by Scrum.org.
5. Brand and Product Manager Certification by Coursera
Price: Free enrollment.
Duration: 13 hours
The Brand and Product Manager Certification is another well-known certification among industry newcomers.
It prioritizes implementing product and brand management at the same time.
The course teaches users how to manage the responsibilities that come with this profile. As a result, it touches on all the brand-specific areas of product management. It also covers how to perform continuous performance analysis as soon as the product is launched.
The Brand and Product Manager Certification teaches skills such as creating activity plans, defining success metrics, and developing product strategies.
The course has graded assessments that you need to pass to receive the completion certificate. It’s an online certificate that you can display on professional social media such as LinkedIn.
To learn more about the course, visit Brand and Product Manager Certification by Coursera
6. Digital Product Management by EdX and Boston University
Duration: Depends on class dates
The Digital Product Management certification is offered by Boston University in collaboration with EdX.
The course offers product management training and certificates to professionals either working as product managers or training for it. The training aspect of the course is part of the MicroMasters program at Boston University.
This program functions as a graduate course that can work as a substitute Master’s program.
The Digital Product Management certification has five basic modules. They teach product life cycle management, product growth techniques, and continuous market analysis, among other subjects.
Besides the fundamentals, the course dives deep into digital innovation and business analytics, as well as, effectively marketing products through social media.
This certification also allows you to apply for the MSDi program at Boston University without having to take entry tests.
The advanced nature of the program makes it ideal for product management professionals who want to have a formal certification along with their existing experience.
To learn more about the certification, visit Digital Product Management by EdX and Boston University.
7. Product Strategy by Northwestern | Kellogg School of Management
Duration: 2 months
The Product Strategy certification is offered by the business studies division of Northwestern University. Their program alumni include some of the most prominent product managers in the country.
This is one of the only PM certification that focus on product strategy.
The program teaches you how to develop product management and marketing strategies, as well as, how to streamline them using techniques such as machine learning.
It goes on to explain how effective business models work and how to identify and eliminate flaws in the product life cycle. You also learn how to create accurate buyer personas and streamline the sales funnel.
The Product Strategy course offers advanced certification to PM professionals. As a result, it’s better for established product managers looking to become industry experts.
To learn more about the course, visit Product Strategy by Northwestern | Kellog School of Management.
8. Product Management Program by Berkeley Executive Education
Duration: 5 days
The Product Management Program by Berkeley summarizes fundamental and advanced product management concepts into one course.
The program focuses on understanding customer environments and experiences and increasing the performance of the whole product team.
During the course, you’ll learn how to develop pricing tools and systems to optimize the profitability of the product. As a bonus, you learn how to put together and manage a product team, as well as, how to make decisions based on customer data.
Because of the advanced nature of this program, it’s best for existing PM professionals. This will allow you to network with your fellow attendees, discuss ideas and innovative techniques, and more.
To learn more about the certification, visit Product Management Program by Berkeley Executive Education.
9. Agile Certified Product Manager Credentials (CPM) by AIPMM
Price: $125 for one-year AIPMM Membership – $1,495 for the exam and certification.
Duration: Self-paced certification, the exam duration is approx. 15-20 hours
The Agile Certified Product Manager Credentials course is the premier product marketing-management course by the globally recognized AIPMM.
It provides a detailed guide to developing, launching, and championing products in the modern marketplace.
The course aims to deliver all the skills you’ll need to plan, implement, and monitor product plans. You’ll also learn how to create business plans and strategies at various stages of product development.
Additionally, the course will help you polish your market planning, competitor analysis, and product launching skills.
Overall, this program is for PM professionals who want a prestigious certification that adds to their existing credentials.
To learn more about the certification, visit Agile Certified Product Manager Credentials by AIPMM.
Become a Certified Product Manager to Advance Your Career
PM certifications are a great way to learn product management and make a career out of it.
There's a lot you can learn on the job in a field like product management. However, the knowledge you'll gain from comprehensive PM certification, is hard to find elsewhere.
While every certification on this list delivers something unique, I personally recommend the One Week PM program by Product Manager HQ. Ultimately, its all-inclusive subject structure is useful for new managers and veterans alike.