I failed my exam….. now what?

I was confident that I could make it and prepared thoroughly for my PMP exam. Even after the exam I felt confident that I had passed but I didn’t. I was getting high 70s in all the mock exams so I have no clue what went wrong. I know I can sit the exam again but what do I do? Should I change my study plan? What does everyone recommend? I am looking for some guidance from successful PMPs


Hey Brandon

Sorry to hear that. But there's always a second chance. If you decide to sit the exam again, you can read our post here about how you can pass the exam and how to choose the correct option in the exam here

Additionally you can download our free app 'PMP Exam Mentor' to revise with content from PMBOK 5th edition and practice with 386 flashcards and 770 free questions.

Good luck with your studies


Thanks for your help. I downloaded the app and looked through it. It seems like a good app for me to revise from. I haven't really analysed the questions yet but they also seem decent. However as always I am a bit suspicious about free things to study from but I will give it a go for sure. I am planning to sit the exam in Dec again. Hopefully I pass this time.

Hi there Brandon

I can understand what you are going through as I faced the same fate a couple of months ago when I failed the first time. But I can say that one shouldn't give up. So put your head up and start again. As far as this app goes, I can attest the usefulness having used it myself right before I sat for the exam the second time and passed. I would suggest you give it a go as well and not hesitate about the fact that it is free. Afterall its free and sometimes free can be good too. Message me if you need further help

Good luck

Neil, PMP

I am assuming this is a testimonial from somewhere.....

Yes it is indeed a testimonial. You can read it here


Hello Brandon,

Very sorry to hear this about you. May I know the books you read and all the mock tests you took where you could secure over 70%?


Rohit, PMP


I skimmed PMBOK but read Rita Mulachy completely.

For the tests I was doing Oliver Lehmann, Pmzilla, Rita, and Headfirst.

I have a feeling that I was too nervous and distracted on the day and would be working on my concentration harder by sitting for 4 hours straight and doing a practice questions.

Thanks for your help

rkraneis's picture


Like everyone, I wish you well in passing the PMP on the 2nd time.  But if I sound like a hard person in the following paragraphs, it's because I'm telling you what I think you need to hear, not what you want to hear.

I want to challenge this "bad luck" theory of why you failed the PMP test.

When you manage a project (and passing the PMP is a project), if the project fails do you say that it was "bad luck".  Isn't that what contingency planning is all about?  Isn't that why we as project managers "identify risks" to find our weak points in managing a project?

The PMP test results gave you accurate information as to your below proficient, moderately proficient, and proficient strengths for the 5 process groups.  The more "below proficient" grades you received for the 5 knowledge areas, the weaker you are in terms of your overall performance on the PMP test.

I like to believe I am a positive PMP coach for lack of a better phrase.  I've helped many people pass the PMP through my Richard Kraneis website, PMP coaching, and YouTube videos.

I just want to dissuade you from this "bad luck" theory of why you didn't pass the PMP.  Passing the PMP and project management is NOT based on luck.  It's based on good preparation, hard work, and execution.  Study your PMP test score, it's a good indicator of your weak process group areas.

Please do not take your 2nd PMP test with any notion that "luck" has anything to do with passing the PMP.  It's just plain hard work.

Sincerely, Best Wishes on Passing the PMP Test,

Richard Kraneis, PMP
Chicago, IL  USA
Richard Kraneis Helped Me Pass the PMP
Richard Kraneis on YouTube

Thanks for your advise

You might be correct. I was rather distracted than the exam being unlucky. Also, I tend to suit self studying so wouldn'y be able to really use your expertise.

Thanks for the offer