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Professional Supply Chain Certification

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Introduction

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM), formerly known as the National Association of Purchasing Management (NAPM), and was founded in 1915. In 2002 the NAPM changed the name of the organization to the Institute for Supply Management to reflect the broader work that their members perform. As the NAPM and the ISM the organization has offered a number of professional certifications such as the Accredited Purchasing Practitioner (APP) and the Certified Purchasing Manager (CPM). These certification programs have now been superseded by two designations that are more focused towards the supply chain; Certified in Supply Management (CSM) and Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM). Both of these certifications are ideal for a purchasing or supply chain professional who want to advance their career, as well as for individuals who want to explore this profession as a new career. In addition there is a new certification for supply chain professionals who deal with supplier diversity, called the Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD). You do not have to be a member of the Institute for Supply Management to take any of these certifications.

Certified in Supply Management (CSM)

This certification is for supply chain professionals that have a broad knowledge of supply chain topics. This program is ideal for supply chain professionals who do not possess a college degree. The minimum requirements to take this exam are either five years of supply chain management experience without having passed an associate's degree or if you have already obtained an associate's degree, the minimum professional supply chain experience is lowered to only three years.

The Certified in Supply Management (CSM) qualification is achieved by passing three exams; Foundation of Supply Management, Effective Supply Management Performance, and Leadership in Supply Management.

  • Foundation of Supply Management - this exam includes the following subjects; Contracting and Negotiations, Costing and Finance, International Supply Chain, Social Responsibility, Sourcing, and Supplier Relationship Management (SRM).
  • Effective Supply Management Performance - this exam includes the following subjects; Forecasting , Logistics, Materials and Inventory Management, Organizational Assessment, Planning, Product Development, Project Management, and Quality.
  • Leadership in Supply Management - this exam includes the following subjects; Leadership, Risk and Compliance, and Strategic Sourcing.

The CSM certification is valid only for three years and the holder will have to recertify by completing sixty hours of continued education credits.

Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM)

This certification is for supply chain professionals that have a broad knowledge of supply chain topics. This certification does require applications to have obtained a bachelor’s degree and had at least three years supply chain management experience. The CPSM certification is only valid for three years and requires that the holder recertify. The recertification process requires that the CPSM holder should complete sixty hours of continued education credits, and if the certification has been expired for more than a year, the CPSM holder must retake all of the exams to recertify. Two thirds of the continued education credit hours must be continued education credits, such as college courses, or courses offered by the ISM, including free or low cost online courses. One third of the continued education credit hours can be obtained from the professional contributions category.

The Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM) qualification is achieved by passing three exams; Foundation of Supply Management, Effective Supply Management Performance, and Leadership in Supply Management. The exam content is the same for the CPSM as the CSM.

Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD)

The Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD) is a new certification that is relevant for supply chain professionals who are responsible for supplier diversity initiatives. The certification is one exam, but if the candidate has not already obtained a CPSM certification then they will need to take the first exam of the CPSM as well as the CPSD exam. Candidates must also have five years of supply chain experience, if they have not obtained a bachelor’s degree or three years if they do obtain a bachelor’s degree.

The Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD) certification is a single exam that is based on the following topics.

  • Policies and Planning
  • Sourcing and Supplier Development
  • Finance and Budgeting
  • Metrics and Oversight
  • Training and Development
  • Advocacy, Marketing, and Outreach

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