The Best Ways for Strategy Professionals to Earn PDUs for PMP Certification

For professionals in charge of strategic planning and management, having a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification can certainly be a boon to your resume and your career. But now that you’ve earned it, you have to keep it!

What are some of the best ways to make sure you’re continuously earning the PDUs, or Professional Development Units, that you need to maintain your PMP certification? Let’s take a look.

PMP Certification Qualifications

First, let’s go over the necessary qualifications for keeping your PMP certification.

In order to maintain your PMP, you need to earn at least 60 PDUs in a three-year cycle. This number breaks down more specifically into two categories:

35 Minimum Education PDUs
25 Maximum Giving Back PDUs

An Education PDU is a way for you to make sure you’re keeping your skills sharp in the ever-evolving world of project, program and portfolio management.

In the Education category, there are also specifications for what kind of PDUs you should be earning. You need at least eight of each skill in the Education Talent Triangle, which means you need eight PDUs in Technical, Leadership and Strategic and Business Management Skills.

As long as you have eight of each in these categories, the choice of how you earn your remaining PDUs is up to you.

A Giving Back PDU is an opportunity for you to expand your skills while investing both personally and professionally to your communities. You can earn up to eight PDUs by simply working as a professional, but the remaining 17 PDUs will ask you to get creative and think outside of the box.

How to Earn PDUs

So, what are the best ways for professionals in strategic management to earn these remaining PDUs for both the Education and Giving Back categories? Here are a few options we love:

Create Content

Do you love to write? Have you had an idea for a potential blog post rolling around in your head or a story you think is worth sharing with your colleagues?

Creating content is a great way for professionals in strategy to earn Giving Back PDUs. Publishing digital content online that relates back to your field counts towards your re-certification — and it gives you room to get a little creative.

If you’re starting to look for places where you could contribute, check out the Project Management Content Contribution page or Knowledge Shelf.

Organization Meetings

Looking for a chance to earn some Education PDUs and a chance to network? Try searching for meetings, conventions or seminars in your area that relate to the profession. These are the perfect way to stay in the loop about new advancements in the field of strategic planning and management.

By sitting in on events like keynote addresses, seminars or educational sessions, you get to learn something new while getting closer to your re-certification.

If you’re searching for a great event in your area, check out the PMI Events Calendar for organizational meetings, or find your local chapter here.

Give a Presentation

Giving talks is another great way to earn a Giving Back PDUs.

Do you have a point of view you think should be shared with your colleagues at large? Maybe that thought you had for a blog post would be better delivered in person?

By giving a presentation at a PMI conference, you’ll not only be earning a PDU credit, but growing as a strategic management professional. Here’s how to submit a proposal for a PMI convention presentation.


Maybe giving a presentation or writing a blog isn’t exactly your style. You can still earn an Education PDU right from the comfort of your own home. Dig into what you’re most interested in and indulge in some self-directed reading to earn your PDUs.

Check out the PMI store for a great read, or head over to Project Management to find PDU-worthy reads on a variety of topics.


Interested in giving back to the community? Why not try volunteering to earn some of those Giving Back PDUs? From serving on the PMI Board of Directors to working as a Regional Mentor to local PMI chapter leaders, there are opportunities for everyone.

Here’s a list of PMI volunteer opportunities so that you can earn your Giving Back PDUs and get involved.

Take a Course

Taking a course is a great way to learn something new for your Education PDUs, no matter what kind of schedule you have. Whether you choose to do a face-to-face, in-person course or an online one, there’s definitely an option that will fit your needs.

Looking for a course that might be right for you? Check out LBL Strategies’ newest live online class – Mastering Strategy: Strategic Management Performance System. This course will build your confidence in applying the latest thinking in strategic planning and management in just 10 weeks. Plus, upon completion, you’ll receive 15 Education PDUs, with 11 of them being in the “Strategic and Business Management” area of the newly updated PMI Talent Triangle.

This new “third leg” of the Talent Triangle is imperative. Employers today are looking for not only technical know-how in their program and project managers, but also leadership skills and strategic business intelligence. By taking our Mastering Strategy course, you’ll be learning new skills and saving time, all while working towards your PMP recertification.

This course also prepares you for IASP certification! An IASP certification allows you to learn how strategy fits into our business on a deeper level and is a smart way to grow and expand your career pathways. Plus, 100% of our course participants who have completed the program and sat for the IASP SPP certification exam have passed!

Get Out and Start Earning!

Earning 60 PDUs to keep your PMP certification may sound like a lot of work, but when you consider that you’re also gaining valuable experiences, keeping your skills sharp and giving back to your community, it begins to feel less overwhelming and more exciting.

Don’t forget, once you’ve earned your PDUs through any of the above options, be sure to report them through the “Report PDUs” on your PMI website dashboard.

If you’re looking for more ways to earn your PDUs, check out our Training and Certification resources, or contact us today to learn more.

LBL Strategies Team