PMI has vision to build China Innovation Center amid fast growth of China market Published: 2019/6/25 17:28:11

Everything is becoming like a project. So we feel that there will be a proliferation of projects across the globe,"said Sunil Prashara, president and CEO of Project Management Institute(PMI) in a recent interview with Global Times Online.

The PMI Job Growth and Talent Gap Report 2017-2027 found that, by 2027,  employers will need nearly 88 million individuals working in project management-oriented roles.

China alone is expected to offer 46 million project management-related jobs, representing more than half of the total employment in this area.

Within China, an average of 1.1 million new project management jobs will be open each year in project-oriented industries — about 11 million new job openings between 2017 and 2027.

As is known to all, China is the world's second largest economy with a rapid and sustained economic growth which is delivered through numerous portfolios, programs and projects. The shortage of qualified project management talents could do damage to China's economic output.

The report predicts that talent shortage might put at risk a total of about US$121 billion in GDP from 2017-2027 for china.

As a matter of fact, China has attached great significance to the training and accreditation of project management talents.

"The potential demand of project talents could be huge as China is in a rapid economic growth brought by China's opening-up and reform policy. Back to twenty years ago, we introduced the PMBOK®Guide and the PMP certification test," Wan Jinfa, Deputy Director of China International Talent Exchange Foundation of China's Ministry of Science and Technology said  at the 2019 China PMO Symposium.

The number of active PMP certification holders in mainland China will exceed 300,000 by the end of 2019, said by Chen Yongtao, Managing Director of PMI (China), at this symposium. Chen added that as of the April of 2019, the share of active PMP certified individuals accounts for more than 30 percent of the total number of PMP certification holders globally.

The 2019 China PMO Survey shows that 56% of mainland China organizations set up project management offices.

Among those organizations, there are some big companies, such as China National Petroleum Corporation, Alibaba Group and Huawei as well as some small and medium-sized companies.

Since the adoption of the strategy of "Go Global" as the national strategy at  the 16th National Congress of the CPC, many Chinese companies step up their efforts to expand into foreign market or undertake projects on a foreign land.

For instance, the official website of China National Petroleum Corporation shows that it has oil and gas operations in over 30 countries.

As the projects are global, there is a lot of complexity out there and project management cuts through that complexity. The roles and expectations of project managers are changing: soft skills are now becoming the hard skills and it's becoming more than just scheduling, planning and risk mitigation.

"Leadership skill, empathy understanding of different cultures and the ability to make decisions on the basis of different technologies and information are involved here, " Sunil told the reporter.

In recent years, under the Belt and Road Initiative, China takes infrastructure interconnection as cooperation priority to support the countries along the Road to improve their infrastructure development. Therefore, China helped build a great many infrastructure projects along the Road.

The PMI introduced a term of PMI Talent Triangle into the Chinese market,  which helps China's project talents cope with today's increasingly complex and competitive marketplace.The PMI Talent Triangle is depicted as a necessary mix of competencies-a combination of technical and leadership skills plus strategic and business management.

The PMI Talent Triangle is just one of the examples of how PMI pinpoints a direction for a project talent to pursue.

The Chinese community of active PMP certification holders has expanded more than 30 percent year-on-year since 2012.

Apart from the rapid growth in the number of certified PMP holders, there is a far more adoption of technology and new tools in the Chinese community as China is recognized as a huge provider and generator of data , Sunil said. He noted that China's PMOs could be more tech savvy than those in the rest of the world.

Within a fast-growing country embracing technology and digitalization, the skills and capabilities that Chinese companies are expecting from the project management talent of tomorrow are more advanced than the skills set of the Talent Triangle. These companies tend to demand some key digital age abilities like data science, innovative mindset, collaborative leadership and more importantly, the ability to adapt, manage and integrate technologies based on the needs of the organization or project at hand, which we call "Project Management Technology Quotient" .

"For PMI, the China market is growing significantly. I think that there is an opportunity to use China as an innovation center where we can do research into new ways of working," said by Sunil. He added that there could be some research into the relationship between new technologies, new frameworks and the future of work, which could add more value for enterprises and society.

Moreover, compared with the rest world, there appears to be more demand for PMP for the younger community in China, which provides an opportunity to make innovations.  

For now, it is just the vision of PMI to set up an innovation center in China. "We can start to build an innovation center in three or four years later if China market continues to deliver a growth of thirty percent year-on-year growth," Sunil emphasized.

With the innovation center, China will be able to contribute a lot more globally in thought leadership around project management.


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