IPMA Competence Baseline: ICB

The IPMA Competence Baseline (ICB) is based upon project management theory combined with the practices and demands from some 50 member associations. It is the common framework document which all IPMA Member Associations and Certification Bodies abide by to ensure that consistent standards are applied.

The main interested parties and their interests are:

  • Project management personnel interested in a universally accepted certification system
  • Management of organisations interested in delivering and receiving good project management services and in personnel development
  • Certification assessors interested in a clearly understandable certification content and process
  • Universities, schools, trainers interested in providing a sound basis for an accepted qualification

The ICB is of most use to individual project managers who wish to review their competence in project, programme and portfolio management, as well as for candidates and assessors involved in a certification. The ICB can also be used as a guide to develop training materials, for research purposes and as a reference document for those who are interested in the project management competence.

The eye of competence, shown below, represents the integration of all the elements of project management as seen through the eyes of the project manager when evaluating a specific situation. The eye represents clarity and vision.

Professional project management consists of 46 competence elements covering

  • the techniques of project management (20)
  • the professional behaviour of project management personnel (15)
  • the relations with the project’s context (11)

IPMA developed the ICB from National Competence Baselines and then enhanced it in a continuous improvement process. A key benefit for clients is that the basis for the competences is not specific to particular companies, organisations, disciplines, sectors of the economy or countries. The cultural aspects of a country can be included in a National Competence Baseline (NCB).

Each competence element includes a title, a description of the content, a list of possible process steps and experience criteria required per level. The key words and the key relations to other elements are listed at the end of each element for comprehensive reading.

How ICB Differs

The IPMA Competence Baseline is a deeper, wider reference for the aspects of project management that truly competent project and programme managers demonstrate. Click on the thumbnail at right to see a larger image of ICB, using a familiar “Periodic Table of Elements” Chart. Note ICB’s broader foundation, with its technical, behavioural and contextual groups of competence elements.

 

Available For Download or Purchase

The ICB is available for Download in a Adobe Acrobat pdf version from the Resources > IPMA Publications section of our website. You can also make arrangements to purchase a printed version from that page.