The PMP Audit Process

pmp audit

PMP® Audit Process Explained

The PMP audit scared the crap out of me when I was applying for the PMP examination. I spent 3 months working on my application where I mapped out every bit of work experience. I then wrote up paragraphs on each of projects, broken down by process group (initiation, planning, executing, monitoring & controlling and closing). After that I spruced them up with project management terminology and finally sent them off to my manager at the time.I did this all as precautionary you don’t need the managers to approve them before you submit them but if you get audited the mangers will need to approve them. I explain why it took me 2 months longer than it should of at the end!

pmp application

PMP® Application Submission

When you submit your application for any PMI© examination you are agreeing to comply with the terms of the PMP audit process. Everyone’s application is eligible to be audited but only a percentage are selected. The selection of an application for the audit is at random but reading blogs there are theories on how to avoid getting audited. I have read that the following tips on trying not to get audited.

  1. Not to repeatedly modifying your application and saving as it could set off a flag.
  2. Not to be changing numbers for hours experience as it seems you are fixing the numbers for your convenience.
  3. Do not differentiate from recommended percentages per process group. The percentages are Initiation 5% to 10%, Planning 20% to 30%, Executing 20% to 30%, Monitoring & Controlling 20% to 30% and Closing 5% to 10%. I didn’t follow this as for some projects all my work was closing so gave more than recommended percentage.

PMP Application

Project Tracking

I created a tracking sheet to help track the projects I managed to calculate hours per project and to align dates.

Project Tracking

  • PMI will only recognize 40 hours per week so 160 maximum per month regardless if you worked overtime
  • No need to include every project as long as you have covered each domain at least once.
  • Overlapping projects do not count ie. You manage 3 projects in one month you still can only claim 160 hours

Use project management vocabulary in your application such as…

Lead, Consulted, Developed, Directed, Monitored, Controlled, Identified, Contributed, Participated, Assisted,
Initiated, Provided, Estimated, Performed, Measured, Managed, Analysed, Acquired, Distributed, Requested, Selected, Verified, Reported, Administered, Contracted, Communicated, Closed.

Submitting PMP Application

Below is all the required information you need to provide per project.

  • Need provide organization details
  • Contact (Manager) details in case of an audit
  • Submit the amount of hours earned per domain
  • The description should include examples of how you led and directed this project. Ensure that your description is between 300 and 550 characters.

PMP Application Form


If You Are Selected

This is not the end of the world and just needs you to verify the information you provided. You will know if your application is selected for an audit straight away. You will be notified by email after payment of the examination fee is received. The email will also provide further details on the audit and the next steps.

During an audit, you will be asked to submit supporting documentation such as:

  • Copies of your diploma/global equivalent
  • Signatures from your supervisor(s) or manager(s) from the project(s) recorded in the experience verification section of the application
  • Copies of certificates and/or letters from the training institute(s) for each course recorded on the application to meet the required contact hours of project management education

You have 90 days to provide the above documentation either by regular post or express courier service in ONE envelope to the following address….


Attn: Certification Audit

14 Campus Blvd.

Newtown Square,

PA 19073-3299 USA

The audit should take about five to seven business days to complete.

Once you pass the audit you have one-year to complete the examination.

Fail The Audit

You should not be failing the audit process if all the information you provided is correct and accurate.

Please note though incomplete audit submissions will not be processed and will result in failure of the audit. You will receive a refund of your fee if you do fail. Please see Refund Policy on the PMI website for more details.

Also if you fail you cannot apply for the PMP for one year.

What I Did When Applying for PMP

I wrote up objectives, deliverables and what I did in each domain for every project I was submitting. Even though all that was needed was a 300-500 word description per project. This helped me provide detailed descriptions per project and I think this was a key contributor to me not getting audited.


pmp methodology

Once you have submitted your application and passed the pmp audit its time to start preparing for the exam, we have everything you need to know outlined here.



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