TT-IPMO (Tools & Techniques) International PMO Certification


The Tools and Techniques (TT-IPMO®) international certification from AIPMO – (Association of International PMOs) is based on  research undertaken over a period exceeding three years, to understand, define, and structure a collection of techniques and tools which when mastered, will greatly increase the chances of successful outcomes for your project, program, portfolio (PPP) and PMO initiatives.

 To-date, limited attention has been given by the (inter)national standard’s authorities to an understanding of what and how to use the various tools and techniques using across PPPs. Two of the three well know associations/institutes reference the third one to describe tools and techniques, and the latter does not detail the difference between a tool and technique, nor describe how the tools and techniques are applied. AIPMO has realized the need for clarification because of the proven link between using a comprehensive methodology (within which there are hundreds of tools and techniques) and project success. Joslin and Müller (2015), showed that using a comprehensive and tailored methodology directly influences project success by up to 23%. Similar findings have shown that applying the most appropriate tools and techniques at any given stage of a project, or program lifecycle is also linked to project/program success (Patanakul et al 2010). Patanakul et al, findings also showed that the inappropriate use of tools and techniques in a certain project and program phases increases the chance of overall failure. This was due to the lack of understanding when and when not to use certain tools and technicals hereafter called T&Ts. The same is likely to be true for project portfolio management but not empirically proven at this point.

 Many trades and profession and have their own T&Ts. The professionals competent in applying these T&Ts are known as experts. Learning and practicing a profession (or trade) to a competent level, may several years. This is due in part due to the time in mastering their specific T&Ts within the context of their environment. PPP management and PMO Management is still immature in this regard, as suggested by research from White and Fortune, in two research studies carried out over a period of 9 years across three continents (2011; 2002). What they discovered was that in 2002, typical project managers only knew an average of five T&Ts and this number only increased to ten in 2011. An even bigger finding was that 70% of respondents identified unanticipated impacts from using the T&Ts which were most likely due to environmental factors that were not considered and thus made their use problematic. The upcoming AIPMO book on T&Ts and this T&T certification course are the first steps to address the shortfall in understanding, clarification, and impact.

 TT-IPMO certification is based on the upcoming book from AIPMO on ‘Project, Program, Portfolio and PMO Tools and Techniques’ that focuses PPP professionals and PMO professionals and other technique-driven professions to understand, for the first time the important details behind ‘what exactly is a tool and what is a technique’. The course explains that not all techniques are equal where some are basic techniques, others are a chain of techniques (hereafter called chains), and the third type is called a category of techniques (hereafter called CATs). All exist within a hierarchy identified by AIPMO. To help in the understanding of the complexities of PPP T&Ts, AIPMO has built a T&T framework within their PMO Lifecycle Framework (see below). The framework which guides the professionals to determine the following

  1. What are Basic techniques, Chains, and CATs  
  2. How they should be selected and adapted for one or more PPPs
  3. What are the considerations to carry out a pilot using one or more complex chains and CATs
  4. Implementing steps to apply, and use, the techniques including the tools to support them.

Figure 1: AIPMO Tools and Techniques framework that encompasses projects, programs, and portfolios

 Certified TT-IPMO will have demonstrated, through a combination of formal training and competency assessment, that they have an in-depth understanding of the definitions, types, and structures of PPP and PMO T&Ts. They know the practices including how to identify the need, select, adapt, pilot, implement, use and improve T&Ts whilst taking a holistic T&Ts topology view across – project types, the organization, and its partners.

Course Overview

A fast-paced and engaging training program, focusing on a pragmatic approach to deliver a series of principles, concepts, frameworks, and unique and new insights into T&Ts that will be regarded as leading practices.

This certification course seeks to equip the participants with a clear method to understand the necessary depth of understanding to maximize their value to their organization because they understand what and how practical T&Ts can be selected, adapted and used to increase the chances of project and project management success. The course content has an underlying theme of tools and techniques applied to different contexts to promote understanding and create impact across PPP and PMOs. It also presents the AIPMO T&T Lifecycle Framework for the first time which provides a structured approach in increasing an organizations T&T maturity.

 AIPMO is also in the process of developing a research-driven T&T principle-based maturity model, which is used in the course to provide a maturity context in the future, enabling your organization to benchmark itself against other organizations within and across industries.

Throughout the program, references will be made to the participants’ environment to encourage discussions that can help to address and/or put perspective to participants’ daily challenges.

The course is a mixture of instructor lead and participative activities where the delegates engage in interactive exercises as part of a detailed case study; this involves work in a team-based case study that utilizes role play and personal coaching, giving them the opportunity to apply the theory blocks and gain reinforcement of key principles through a blend of different learning activities.

This programme builds on aspects of the knowledge areas (and associated T&Ts) of PMI’s PMBOK® 6th edition, Standard for Program Management 4th Edition and the Standard for Portfolio Management 4th edition in addition to detailed research on T&Ts in the academic community.

This is a unique course and will provide insights that have never been shared before as they will be part of the upcoming AIPMO T&T book. There attendees will be able to share and discuss ideas based on new knowledge.

Who Should Attend

  • Project Leaders, PMO Managers and Project managers wishing to formalize and extend their existing T&T knowledge
  • Any senior project stakeholder wishing or needing to be part of a project team and understand/take the lead on using a variety of techniques
  • Team leaders
  • Consultants and other professionals who need to deepen their knowledge
  • Team members looking to develop an understanding of the core of project management which is founded on tools and techniques so they can best support their project managers
  • Sponsors of projects, who would like to learn more about which T&Ts they need to know to be able to support their projects in the most effective way

Course Objectives

  1. Understand the relationship between applying appropriate T&Ts and the impact on project, program, portfolio and PMO success
  2. Spot the traits of lack of understanding and application of the right T&T’s within an organization
  3. Explain why there are confusion, opaqueness and a lack of focus on PPP T&Ts
  4. Prepare and pass the multiple-choice TT-IPMO exam
  5. Create a T&T topology by project type, PPP and across the organization
  6. Discuss the latest academic research in PMOs, tools and techniques, and PPP within and outside of AIPMO
  7. Create a T&T register and how it links to other registers
  8. Know and apply T&Ts to Risk Management, Decision Making, Communications and Conflict Management
  9. Understand how to directly increase the probability of project, program, portfolio and PMO success
  10. Learn how to create a T&Ts Service, as part of your organization’ PMO Services and Capabilities catalog

Learning Outcomes

  1. Able to apply the AIPMO T&T framework including using the AIPMO filters to determine what is a generic tool, commercial tool, basic technique, CAT and chain
  2. List the types of techniques – basic technique, a category of techniques (CAT) and chain of techniques (Chain)
  3. Demonstrate how to create a T&T topology by project type, PPP and across the organization
  4. Debate how the integrated AIPMO ‘PMO and T&T framework’ to create lasting organizational impact
  5. Differentiate between generic and commercial tools and the risks associated with using them
  6. Apply the T&T framework using a detailed case study based on a real project with exercises, role play, and management presentations
  7. Gain tips and tricks, experience and best practice guidelines that relate T&Ts
  8. Advise project managers on which T&Ts should be applied at which phase within a project lifecycle
  9. Know how to build T&T capabilities within your organization

What You Need to Know


Classroom training: 3 days


The training approach includes:

  • Lecture
  • Team exercises
  • Group discussions on pertinent topics
  • Detailed Simulation Case Study
  • Presentations and role play
  • Personal coaching (if time allows)
  • Exam – 1 hour with 50 multiple choice questions
  • Discussing the exam answers


  • 1 years’ plus experience in project and/or program management
  • Ideally a formal PM certification such as PMI’s CAPM, PMP, or Axelos’s Prince 2 Practitioner, or IPMA (Levels C or D), IPMO-F
  • Attendees should have a good working knowledge of project management processes, tools, and techniques
  • Educated to degree level or similar

Certification Exam

  • An exam is given at the end of the course moderated by the instructor
  • Open book exam 50 multiple choice questions
  • Duration 1 hour

The exam will be marked in class. If there are any borderline attendees – the instructors will review their case study exercise work to determine if they understand how to meet exercise and case-building requirements. If the instructor judges that borderline attendees understand sufficiently, then they will receive their certification(s).

Course Modules