It has been a few weeks since I’ve last posted on the blog, but I promise I have a good reason! And that reason is that my TikTok addiction has finally proven itself to be useful. Needless to say, a lot of the TikToks that land on my “for you” page are related to personal finance and business.
A few weeks back, I came across a creator that was talking about free certificate programs through Google. They mentioned that not a lot of people knew about them because they are a somewhat new offering. They also mentioned that a ton of employers signed up with Google to show their interest in hiring people who completed this program!
Needless to say, I immediately spent the afternoon researching the program and signed up! I finished the first course of Google’s Project Management Certificate Program and wanted to leave a little review here for anyone who may be looking to add to their professional skills!
Here are all of the Google Certificate Programs offered
The exciting thing about Google’s certificate programs is that there is a ton of variety and all of them are offered for free. They are also made to be beginner-friendly to help entry-level workers get some experience in these in-demand fields.
You can find an overview of all the programs they offer at https://grow.google/certificates/. Alternatively, you can find the specific program that interests you by clicking below.
Types of Google Certificate Programs:
- Google IT Certificate
- Google Data Analytics Certificate
- Google Project Management Certificate
- Google Android Development Certificate
- Google UX Design Certificate
I also wanted to take a moment to say how ironic it is that Google’s website for the certificate programs doesn’t even show up on the first page of search results! Can they not hack their own algorithm?
I would definitely recommend bookmarking this post in case you want to refer back to this later down the road!
Are the google certificate programs free?
The program is free in the sense that Google isn’t directly profiting off of this course. That being said, it should come as no surprise that there is a catch. To access the course, you have to use Coursera and it costs $39 a month to use their platform.
On the plus side, they do offer a free trial for 7-days! A super dedicated person could probably knock out a good chunk of the program in that time if they forgo a social life completely.
Even if you go this route, you will likely have to pay for at least one month of Coursera. That is because there are projects you have to complete that are peer-reviewed before you can receive the certificate.
I remember reading a review from someone who tried to complete the course during the Coursera trial and they reported some parts of the course were “Coming Soon!”. Of course, they suspiciously became available once the free trial was over. As with anything, your mileage may vary!
The true cost of the Google project management certificate program
If you take the 6-months they recommend to complete this course, you will have spent around $240 on Coursera to obtain the certificate.
I think most people could probably finish the program in 3 months fairly easily and a few other reviews I read said similar things. I started the program in October and plan to complete it by the end of December, so my costs will be around $120.
The best part is that you do gain access to all of the other courses on Coursera during this time. So there is no reason that you couldn’t walk away with a few extra certificates or take some courses that interest you during this time.
I was pleasantly surprised at the other courses available and so far I am very happy with the cost/value ratio.
What is the Google Project Management Certificate Program?
Now that we’ve covered the basics of what kind of certificates Google has and the general costs, let’s get into analyzing the true value of the project management certificate.
A project manager is essentially someone who is super organized and is responsible for planning the course of a project from start to finish. Usually, they are helping to coordinate a project that requires the support of many different teams at a company. There are project managers in a wide variety of industries, from tech to construction and beyond!
The project management professional certification is a great introduction to the basics of project management. It gives great learning opportunities for people who may not even be working in this field yet.
This is important because the demand is growing for project managers. Project management is one of the few fields where someone can earn a six-figure salary despite not having a STEM background.
The Google project management certificate program consists of these 6 courses:
- Foundations of Project Management
- Project Initiation: Starting a Successful Project
- Project Planning: Putting it all Together
- Project Execution: Running the Project
- Agile Project Management
- Capstone: Applying Project Management in the Real World
All of these courses contain videos, readings, and quizzes to help you track your progress. They are very beginner-friendly and are suitable for a wide range of learning styles.
At the end of this course, you will have learned all the foundational skills of project management. This includes a basic understanding of the different methodologies (waterfall, agile, etc.). Once you understand the methodologies, you can decide which one is best for your projects and even decide to specialize in one.
How much money can you make with the Google Project Management Certificate?
This is where things were a bit misleading on their website. They list the average salary for entry-level roles across certificate fields as $63,600. For the project management certificate in particular, they list $59,000 as the average entry-level salary.
On the other hand, it’s unclear if this is just the industry average. It also doesn’t say if the number includes people who have prior work experience or the geographic location of those surveyed. They also do not say specifically the results of those who have been through their program.
Regardless, in my experience, project managers are in pretty high demand. I see many jobs that offer this kind of salary or much higher. This is another great thing about working in project management! You can find many remote positions available. I’ve seen freelance/contract opportunities that often start at rates of $35 per hour plus.
Can you actually get a job with the Google Project Management Certificate?
In short, yes! I do think it’s very realistic to land in the $60k+ range. As long as you have some relevant experience or transferable skills! You’d be surprised at how much of your work and life experiences transfer over to this field of work.
You can also try beefing up your resume with contract jobs before making the career switch. The certificate program also gives lots of resume and interviewing tips.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t much clarity on Google’s website on how the employer consortium works or how to get jobs through it. I’m sure that this is something you don’t gain access to until you finish the certificate. The good news is that many of the companies in the consortium are Fortune 500 companies.
Fortune 500 companies are the top revenue-producing companies in the US and the salaries they are able to pay employees often reflect that. These are the kinds of companies that have starting salaries of $70k+ for these kinds of roles. This is also why I’m very optimistic about the possibility of securing a decently paying job with this kind of certificate.
How long does it take to earn a certificate in project management from Google?
They recommend setting aside at least 10 hours a week to go through the material. At that pace, it will take a little under 6 months to complete. This is probably one of the best 6-month certificate programs you can find!
I’ve been moving through the program extremely fast because I’m a super nerd. It took me about 2-3 days to complete one course out of the six they offer! Of course, to complete it this quickly, I did sit down and work on it for 6-8 hours straight. I also ended up taking several days between each session.
Technically I could probably finish the course in about 10 days, but those days would really suck. There are also projects required in the other courses, so I’m not sure that this pace will be possible considering those may take longer to complete. They are also peer-reviewed, so I’m sure I will put a lot of time into polishing my project!
How long does it take to get Google certification results?
Since this is an online program through Coursera, the results are instantaneous once you’ve completed the module/course! So the second you finish the project management program, you can start uploading your new certificate to LinkedIn.
Instant gratification is one of the best parts of finishing an online certificate program. I remember waiting over a month to get my degree from the university in the mail! And by the time it arrived, I didn’t even bother to frame it.
My review of the Google Project Management Certificate Program
As someone who is currently managing projects, both personal and professional, I am finding the content of the course to be extremely useful. I am learning a lot and enjoy that it has mixed content (video, reading, and quizzes). The platform is really easy to navigate and I find that I am completing the content much faster than expected.
I do think that if someone already has more formal learning in this field then they may be a little bored with the course. This may still be an excellent fit for someone who has experience because many of the other professional certificates in project management require that you’ve already been working in the field for a few years.
So for someone who is looking to break into this field of work or is newer, then this will be a perfect fit. If this sounds like something you’d like to explore, then you can sign up for the course here.
Be sure to report back on your thoughts of the program if you do try it out!
Are you going to try one of the Google certificates? If so, which one interests you the most? Leave a note in the comments, I’d love to hear from you!
Kathryn Rucker is a sales consultant and content writer. With 7+ years of sales experience, she is passionate about helping businesses and individuals grow their sales pipelines by improving their online presence.