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Merit Career Development > Courses

For over 20 years Merit has helped leaders around the world reach their management, communications, and training goals. We provide live instruction on your site, Virtual Instructor Led Synchronous Training (VILT), and web-based training accessible 24/7. We also offer a blended delivery method to best suit your needs. Below are some of the many topics we regularly deliver;

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Project Management Basics (4 hours)

Course Code: PM099
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Anyone interested in PM, and Managers of Project Managers

This half-day workshop is designed to give participants the basic skills and tools necessary to manage projects through successful completion. It provides an overview of the project management process and how to avoid common pitfalls that will typically emerge throughout the process without the proper precautions. Based on a case study, the participants complete exercises on practical project management, using project management best practices.

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Project Management Foundations (2 days)

2.8108333333333

Course Code: PM101
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers and anyone interested in PM

This workshop is designed to give the participant the skills and tools to consistently be an effective project manager. Participants will receive guidance through the entire project life cycle, learning to gain “buy-in” from sponsors, create a tactical plan, and manage project scope changes and challenges. Participants will learn how to communicate the appropriate information to the various stakeholders throughout the project life cycle.

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Project Management Fundamentals (3 days)

4.7778571428571

Course Code: PM102
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers and anyone interested in PM

This workshop covers the full complement of sub-plans, methods and procedures that span the typical project life-cycle from initiation to project close. Designed to give the participant the skills and tools to consistently be an effective project manager, participants will examine the role of the project manager and their involvement in managing the life-cycle of a project through defining task, time management, scheduling, and resource allocation. Each of the ten PMI Knowledge Areas will be covered in the modules that will be presented to the workshop participants.

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Project Management with Simulation Executive Overview (1 day)

4.6375

Course Code: PM103
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: This course is ideal for those involved in and managing projects: Novice or advanced project managers, Project team leaders, Project team members, and Senior Managers

In Merit’s Project Management with Simulation Executive Overview, the experience of managing projects is brought to life. The project requirements, the resource constraints, timing and budgeting challenges, everyday interruptions, and sudden changes that emerge, are all included in the simulation. Using SimulTrain ®, a computer-based simulator, is invigorating, exciting, a bit stressful, and very engaging. You will be able to apply your learning and team-building skills immediately. Participants always leave the day saying they just didn’t realize how engaging a project management learning experience could be.

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Project Management Foundations with Simulation (2 days)

4.5018421052632

Course Code: PM104
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers and anyone interested in PM

This workshop covers several PM sub-plans, methods and procedures that span the typical project life-cycle from initiation to project close. It is designed to give the participant the skills and tools to consistently be an effective project manager. Participants will examine the role of the project manager and their involvement in managing the life-cycle of a project through defining tasks, time management, scheduling, and resource allocation.

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Project Management Overview with Simulation (3 days)

4.26

Course Code: PM105
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers and anyone interested in PM

This workshop covers the full complement of sub-plans, methods and procedures that span the typical project life-cycle from initiation to project close. It is designed to give the participant the skills and tools to consistently be an effective project manager. Participants will examine the role of the project manager and their involvement in managing the life-cycle of a project through defining task, time management, scheduling, and resource allocation. Each of the ten PMI Knowledge Areas will be covered in the modules that will be presented to the workshop participants.

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Project Management Essentials (1 day)

4.9

Course Code: PM106
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Anyone interested in PM

PM Essentials is designed to give participants the skills and tools needed to improve his or her project management (PM) success from kickoff through completion. This is a hands-on workshop where participants learn and apply essential PM techniques to a case study before applying them to their own project. Based on the top reasons that projects fail, the content of this workshop will increase project success. By the end of the day, learners will have a personal project plan workbook ready for immediate application.

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Project Planning Foundations (1 day)

Course Code: PM107
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers and anyone interested in PM

Failing to plan is planning to fail. Research shows that the top reasons projects fail is the lack of up front planning. This one-day course is designed to address this issue. Using a case study, participants work through the foundations of project planning from initiation, to schedule development, communication and risk planning.

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PM Fundamentals (12 hours)

Course Code: PM151
Delivery Method: On Demand Education
Targeted Audience: This course is intended for newcomers in project management, junior project managers, members of project teams, and experienced managers who are looking for the theoretical and methodological background.

The e-learning course "PM Fundamentals" is a basic introduction to project management which gives insights in the methods and concepts of project management. With the help of 36 lessons grouped into 9 thematic modules, the learner is introduced step by step to the essentials of project managements, its reasoning as well as its instruments and methods.

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PM Advanced (18 hours)

Course Code: PM152
Delivery Method: On Demand Education
Targeted Audience: This course is intended for project managers who would like to complete their knowledge, and project managers who would like to perfect their skills in preparation for a certification.

The e-learning course "PM Advanced" is targeted on senior project managers who already have fundamental knowledge in project management. The course deals with more complex project management methods and instruments.

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Comprehensive Project Management Workshop (5 days)

4.13

Course Code: PM201
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Novice project managers, anyone interested in PM, and those aspiring to become PMPs

This comprehensive workshop covers the full complement of sub-plans, methods and procedures that span the typical project life-cycle from initiation to project close. It is designed to give the participant the complete set of skills and tools to consistently be an effective project manager. Participants examine the role of the project manager and their involvement in managing the life-cycle of a project through defining task, time management, cost estimation, scheduling, and resource allocation. Each of the ten PMI Knowledge Areas will be covered in the modules that will be presented to the workshop participants. This course meets the qualifications of the PMI to take the PMP examination.

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Stakeholder Management and Communications Planning (1 day)

4.565

Course Code: PM202
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers

A great deal of research on “why projects fail” shows that the primary reason is poor communications. Stakeholder management and communication planning are often skipped in the project management process because other plans and tasks supersede these two important topics. This course seeks to address the need for proper stakeholder management and why a good communication plan is imperative for project success.

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Schedule and Cost Control (2 days)

4.62

Course Code: PM203
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers, general managers, team leaders and individuals responsible for risk management

A Project Manager is usually the one individual primarily responsible for ensuring a project is delivered on time, within budget and to the desired level of quality. Balancing these three constraints are integral to a successfully managed project. This course examines project scope, requirements management, time management, cost control, and the important relationship between the concepts. The class leads the participant through the processes required to successfully define the project requirements and break them down into the tasks and activities that are required to produce a project schedule that meets the sponsor’s timeline and budget.

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Project Change Management (1 day)

Course Code: PM204
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers

Effective change management is a key component and vital to the success of projects and project management. Project Managers must be highly regimented in their approach to dealing with project changes and their related dynamics. As a part of the change management process, it is important to track, understand the impact and quantify each change with regard to the approved project plan baseline. A critical component of the change process is communicating the impact of the proposed changes to appropriate organizational personnel.

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Agile Project Management (2 days)

4.73

Course Code: PM301
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers

This course teaches Agile principles and practices used in project management to best handle change. Flexibility, adaptation and direct communications are encouraged. Recurring opportunities to assess the direction of a project throughout its life cycle are provided using rolling wave planning, interactive and incremental delivery methods. During this 2-day course participants develop and employ an Agile design with Sprint Planning and Scrums. Each day participants are provided the opportunity to practice project execution and control of an Agile project in a dynamic real-time environment.

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Identifying and Managing Project Risks (1 day)

4.5183333333333

Course Code: PM302
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers, general managers, team leaders and individuals responsible for risk management

This one-day course is designed to provide participants with an overview of risk management methodologies and best practices. It covers the key concepts, components, and tools that are required to develop effective measures for monitoring and controlling project risks. Participants will be presented with techniques for identifying, assessing, monitoring, controlling, reporting and analyzing project risks and their impact on project costs and schedules. Hands-on examples and templates are used to reinforce risk management concepts, tools, and methods used to effectively manage project risks.

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Agile PM for Non-IT Environments (1 day)

Course Code: PM311
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: This course is intended for anyone managing activities in the workplace

The Agile methodology has evolved beyond the IT environment and can be applied to a variety of functions and departments in an enterprise. Principles and practices used in Agile project management to best handle rapidly changing environments form the foundation of this course. Flexibility, adaptation and direct communications are encouraged. Recurring opportunities to assess the direction of a project throughout its life cycle are provided using rolling wave planning, interactive and incremental delivery methods. During this course participants practice principles and tools from the Agile Project Management method.

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PMP Exam Prep (5 days)

Course Code: PM401
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Experienced and novice project managers aspiring to become PMPs

This course is intended for individuals who wish to obtain their PMP or CAPM credential. The Project Management Professional (PMP ®) Exam Preparation course is designed to prepare students to pass the PMP exam administered by the Project Management Institute (PMI ®).

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Project Cost Estimating (2 days)

4.65

Course Code: PM402
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Those responsible for estimating costs on projects.

The course introduces methods and techniques used in estimating project costs through defining tasks via a work breakdown structure (WBS). A wide variety of cost estimating techniques are practiced during the workshop and emphasis is placed on selecting the most accurate estimating methods for a particular task.

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Identifying and Managing Project Risks (2 days)

4.832

Course Code: PM403
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers, general managers, team leaders and individuals responsible for risk management

Risk Management is designed to provide participants with a practical in-depth understanding and use of risk management methodologies and best practices. The content covers key concepts, components, and tools that are required to develop effective measures for monitoring and controlling project risks. Participants prepare risk response plans with associated “triggers” to execute the plans. Participants will be presented with techniques for identifying, assessing, monitoring, controlling, reporting and analyzing project risks, and their impact on project quality, costs and schedules.

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Project Cost Estimating (3 days)

4.895

Course Code: PM404
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Those responsible for estimating costs on projects.

Estimating costs is as much an art form as an accounting process. To do it successfully one must have a good understanding of the work required and the skills of those performing the work. The course introduces methods and techniques used in estimating project costs through defining tasks via a work breakdown structure (WBS). A wide variety of cost estimating techniques are practiced during the workshop and emphasis is placed on selecting the most accurate estimating methods for a particular task.

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Project Leadership (2 days)

4.69

Course Code: PM405
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: This course is designed for personnel in the private or public workforce that wish to improve their project leadership knowledge and skills.

In Project Leadership participants learn and experience three critical aspects of successful project leadership. First, the course dives deeply into situation based leadership.Participants apply techniques to meet the demands of the situation as well as the needs of the project team members. Managing team conflict is always challenging therefore properly addressing the subject is the second component of the class. Selecting and applying the proper leadership and conflict management styles to individuals and teams greatly improves the odds of success. The third topic is risk management — a key to project success. The participants apply risk management techniques and manage a project throughout the course.

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X-AM PMP®/CAPM® (20 hours)

Course Code: PM451
Delivery Method: On Demand Education
Targeted Audience: This tool is designed for candidates for the Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification exam and candidates for the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)® certification exam.

The exam simulator X-AM Project Management Professional (PMP)® / Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)® allows certification candidates to prepare for the Project Management Institute (PMI)® examination in an easy and efficient way. Candidates become accustomed to the kinds of questions asked during the examination while practicing with the X-AM.

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Earned Value Management (2 days)

Course Code: PM501
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers

This workshop covers the technique of Earned Value (EV) as an effective tool in managing projects. It covers the history of the EV concept along with the rationale for using the tool. EV is currently the most robust project management tool available for evaluating project status and forecasting completion costs and schedule. Earned Value relies on a well-developed work breakdown structure to create cost and schedule baselines. From this base-level definition, it is possible to compare project plans versus actual status in a more meaningful way than traditional planned versus actual presentations. The EVM metrics are very helpful in analyzing and forecasting variations in cost and schedules for the future of the project.

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Risk Management for the Pharmaceutical Industry (1 day)

Course Code: PM601
Delivery Method: On-site Workshop
Targeted Audience: Project managers, clinical trial managers and individuals responsible for risk management

The pharmaceutical industry and drug development process pose challenges that vary significantly from standard project management practices, especially in the area of risk management. Risk management is an integral part of project planning; it is not a separate process. It includes the processes concerned with conducting risk management planning identification, analysis, responses plus monitoring and control on a project. The objectives of project risk management are to maximize positive outcomes by increasing the probability and impact of positive events, and minimize the negative outcomes by decreasing the probability and impact of events adverse to a project.

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Getting Design Right: A Systems Approach (8 weeks)

Course Code: SYS500
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

Design is the activity of imagining the future, setting goals, and finding ways to achieve those goals. This program is a practical approach to the philosophy of design and is essential learning for anyone involved in creating things.

Getting Design Right: A Systems Approach incorporates aspects from both design and systems engineering to provide a solid understanding of the fundamental principles and best practices in these areas. This six course program presents a formal process for discovering requirements and tackling design problems.

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Getting Started on Product and Service Design (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS501
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

This course is the first in a six-course series devoted to the Getting Design Right program. Here we examine the first step in this process: define the problem. This initial step involves identifying the product concept; establishing the mission, boundary, and context of the product or service; and identifying functional requirements for the product or service.

This course should give you the confidence to initiate design projects and to enrich design concepts with important details critical to the design process. For those of you who are managers or interested in becoming managers, the course makes clear the kinds of work products you can expect at the earliest stages of design. It also provides the tools and explanation needed to develop those products.

This course is grounded in systems thinking and requires both detail and abstraction: it teaches you to consider details carefully and to abstract from those details to create design requirements. It provides widely applicable exercises that you can use to develop your teams' system-thinking skills. In addition, it is unique in its behavioral emphasis, focusing on end users and on what the system will do for them. This is a customer-focused design process.

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Targeting Product and Service Designs to Customers' Needs (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS502
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

This course is the second in a six-course series devoted to the Getting Design Right program. The title of this course is also the title of the second step in the Getting Design Right process and the focus of this course.

The purpose of this course is to both deepen your understanding of and help you discover what customers require of a product or service, how to quantify and measure their needs, and how to set performance targets to meet those needs. During this step of the Getting Design Right process, you take product and service goals and develop them into measurable performance targets.

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Exploring the Design Space and Optimizing the Design (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS503
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

In this course, we emphasize that the product concept you started with may not be the best design idea to meet all of the requirements that you have identified. During this step of Getting Design Right, the focus is on exploring the design space to discover other concepts and on optimizing the design.

This course presents techniques such as brainstorming to systematically explore the range of design possibilities. It then details how to generate several workable integrated concepts, and concludes with a comparative approach to select the best overall concept.

The first two courses in this series used the example of a toy catapult to illustrate the steps in the design process. This course extends the example of the toy catapult to illustrate the steps involved in exploring and optimizing the product's design: clarifying requirements, analyzing functionality, generating a collection of creative product ideas, refining those ideas to create new solutions, and ultimately selecting the best idea for production.

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Thinking through the Structure of System Design (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS504
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

This course presents step five in the Getting Design Right program: developing the architecture. This is the central course in the series for developing your understanding of how systems work and how to describe how they work. In addition, it covers many new considerations important to everyone engaged in system design. The concepts and tools presented here are relevant to a wide variety of projects, large and small.

The process of developing the architecture involves creating a description of the system in terms of its subsystems and how they work together. The challenge for the designer is to create a description that communicates effectively to all members of the design team - for example, to hardware engineers versed in mechanical or electrical engineering as well as to software engineers versed in computer science - even though these groups may speak discipline-specific languages.

This course uses basic concepts introduced earlier in the series to develop a general language for describing system architecture that everyone on the team can understand.

This course is unique in several ways. It emphasizes the role of architecture, a role typically ignored in Design for Six Sigma approaches. It presents a behavioral basis for architecture that likewise is often overlooked in systems engineering.

In this course, the learner finds that most of the work products resulting from the design process are derived from operational descriptions. This behavior-centered approach integrates otherwise diverse views of the system and has enormous benefits for the end-user, ensuring that every aspect of the product's or service's use has been thoroughly thought through.

Systems thinking requires both detail and abstraction. A manager can develop her team's systems-thinking skills by using the affinity process to abstract system behavior from detailed operational descriptions. Anyone using this approach, manager or designer, learns to think through the coordination and control of the system and to allocate functionality and performance to subsystems.

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Ensuring the Success of Product and Service Design (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS505
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

Nothing about designing a product or service is entirely risk-free. In systems design, risk is always present, so it's more amatter of identifying, quantifying, and properly managing it. To gauge a product or service's potential for failure, first assess whether the design addresses requirements, then test and evaluate it to determine if it's capable of reaching performance targets.

This step of Getting Design Right focuses on validating that the product or service under consideration will meet the needs for which it is designed. To this end, this course demonstrates how to verify design requirements by conducting design reviews and by developing a test plan. This course also explores effective risk management within the context of the overall systems design process.

You will learn how to reduce the severity of negative outcomes and become a problem solver. Run a Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) in order to quantify and manage risk and review real-life risk management scenarios. When flaws in concept or design processes are discovered, you'll know how to deploy the FMEA to prioritize corrective measures.

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Executing and Improving System Design (12 hours)

Course Code: SYS506
Delivery Method: Self-Paced eLearning
Targeted Audience: This program is intended for managers or people interested in becoming managers.

This course explores the two final steps in the Getting Design Right process: executing the design and iterating the design process. It provides the tools you need to realize your design and deliver on the promise of the design mission statement. Further, it explains how to maintain a systems view of the project, creatively deal with roadblocks, engage in continuous improvement, tailor the eight-step process, and manage complexity. This course, like the other courses in the series, blends creativity and problem solving, continuous improvement (Six Sigma) and systems engineering, assembling bestpractices from each domain.

Managers completing this course (and curriculum) will have an integrated overview of the whole design process, including the design-realization process, and will be able to relate it to any project they manage. In addition, because system thinking requires abstract as well as detailed thinking, managers can use this course to develop their teams' overall system-thinking skills.

Individuals completing this course will have a framework for evaluating software packages, training seminars, consulting services, and more. This framework, the systems cube, can be used to assess these packages on what they cover, and more importantly, on what they fail to cover.

Designers completing this course may choose to seek out software suitable for managing more complex projects. This curriculum will enable these designers to understand how to fit new software into the Getting Design Right process.

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