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What is DOL Coach?

DOL Coach (DOLC) is a Platinum Educational Partner of the Institute of Project Management (IPM), a leader in project education, a Dave Ramsey Preferred Financial Coaching organization, partner to veteran and charity organizations, and a veteran-owned/operated small business.  DOL Coach is the flagship business unit of DOLx Inc.

What does “DOL” mean?

DOL is short for De Oppresso Liber – Latin for To Free the Oppressed.  It’s the motto of the US Army Special Forces.  Our founder is a proud post-9/11 Special Forces combat veteran and is actively engaged with several veteran non-profit organizations.  He is a lifetime member of the Special Forces Association and an Ambassador for the Green Beret Foundation.

What certifications do you offer?

We are proud to offer the following levels of certification through our Platinum Partnership with the Institute of Project Management (from the lowest level to highest):

Certified Project Officer (CPO).  CPOs know projects.

Certified Project Professional (CPP).  CPP’s lead projects.

Certified Project Master (CPM).  CPM’s lead project teams.

Certified Project Director (CPD).  CPD’s lead project managers and programs.

Certified Project Trainer (CPT).  CPT’s train and help certify others in project management.

How does the Institute of Project Management’s certifications compare to other project management certifications?

The Institute bases all certifications upon three criteria candidates possess regarding project management principles and practices: Knowledge, Experience, and Skills.  Other Certifying Bodies only evaluate knowledge and experience – and do so solely through an extensive scenario-based examination.  All Institute certification holders have demonstrated their Skills as project or program managers.  It is through this Skills Assessment that we base all Certification awards.

What is required for certification?

Knowledge, Experience, and an ability to demonstrate Skills through our Assessment. During the hour-long assessment with a certified trainer, you will be asked questions that require you to demonstrate practical knowledge of project management practices, needing to cite examples, and provide personal experience in project work you have been involved in.

“Standards have no compromise” is one of DOL’s abiding principles, so if you are unable to demonstrate proficiency at the level for which you are seeking, you will be given a second chance at assessment after additional learning and study.

Is a degree necessary?

No.  We never undervalue the importance of education.  But… unlike other certifying bodies, we don’t punish those seeking certification who’ve taken alternate/non-university paths to gain experience through the military or trades.

What methodology are your certifications and courses based on?

The Institute’s approach is methodology agnostic – our courses and certifications focus on implementing project best practices across multiple methodologies rather than one particular methodology.

How much of a time commitment is the Basic Project Management Course?

Minimal outside of the twelve 2-hour sessions – there may be some brainstorming or jotting down a list of past experiences, but no “homework” per se.  Each course is fully self-contained within the sessions and designed to walk you through all the project phases with deeper dives into project and team leadership, agile project management, and more.

Do I have to pay the $25 admin fee if I am active-duty or a veteran?

Yes, we’ve been forced to add that as an Admin fee after having hundreds of drop-outs for courses and scaling the systems to the level we have.

How do I make up a session if I miss one during the Basic Course?

We understand life happens, and (as project managers ourselves) we’ve planned for the contingency that you may miss a session of our course.  If you miss a session, all you need to do is follow the table below and complete the accompanying Unit in OPEN (where you registered your account at the start of the course).  Here’s a guide to help you:

How long is the certification exam?

There is no exam – tests don’t test your ability to manage projects; they solely test your ability to pass a test.  The Certified Project Officer (CPO) certification is automatically issued to all who complete the Basic course.  For our higher-level certifications (CPP- CPD), there is an assessment.  This Assessment is designed to allow you to demonstrate your SKILLS in leading projects and teams.  It is a casual yet recorded interview with a Certified Project Trainer in which a series of questions are posed.  Again, this Assessment is a chance to allow you to demonstrate your skills and dig into your practical knowledge and application of project management principles.  There is a rubric available pre-Assessment, so you know what to expect.  All higher-level Assessments are also 100% reimbursable through the VA and GI Bill.

How much does recertification cost annually?

$0 – no recertification fees, ever.  No Professional Development Units (PDUs) are required.  No memberships to buy and maintain.  No new book releases to purchase or forced chapter memberships.  Once you are issued a certification from us – you are admitted to the Institute for life.

Will employers accept your certifications in place of a PMP?

Yes.  Each employer is different as to what they prefer. Still, employers look favorably upon our certifications because you’ve demonstrated the skills to be admitted to the Institute, and they, therefore, know you can speak to and execute projects.

How does military experience translate to project management experience for your certification requirements?

Military experience counts as blanket years of experience toward certification at various levels.  In fact, the Institute is the only certifying body that currently baseline military ranks and immediately and easily applies them as a baseline certification level for which you are eligible. This doesn’t mean we give you the certification as a thank you for your service, but we actually do appreciate it – we don’t just SAY we do.

Is the Basic Project Management Course really free for active-duty military, veterans, first responders, and their spouses?

100% yes.  Military/first responders all possess a certain level of experience executing projects. Usually, they lack the language from the civilian world and some of the best practices/tools for applying it. We give Basic for free to this community to help bridge that language gap between the two sectors and honor the sacrifice and work military, veterans, first responders, and spouses have put in throughout their career.