I was thinking back to the days before the SPSM® Certification was a twinkle in Next Level Purchasing’s eye. There were already existing purchasing certifications, so why would the world need another one?
One factor that ignited our desire to create a purchasing certification that was newer and better than the ones that were out there was a series of conversations that I was in as a practitioner. You see, I had one of those traditional purchasing certifications (which we’ll call “Cxxxx” to avoid slamming the association that issues it). And I’d often hear people say “The Cxxxx isn’t like the CPA (Certified Public Accountant).”
I couldn’t deny that. If you ask 100 random people on the street what CPA stands for, a majority may be able to give you the right answer. If you ask those same 100 people what the Cxxxx stands for, I would be surprised if one of them could answer correctly.
But beyond recognition among the general public, the CPA communicated something that the Cxxxx did not. Why?
Well, I’ve personally worked with a number of CPA’s. And each and every one did high quality work. I have never met a CPA who was a slouch at his or her work.
I’ve also worked with a number of Cxxxx’s. And many of them do excellent work as well. Many of the people I respect the most in the purchasing field have the Cxxxx.
But, unfortunately, I’ve also worked with Cxxxx’s who are at the bottom of the work performance food chain. And many executives I had worked with or spoken to prior to the 2004 launch of the SPSM® Certification noted that a certification from the association that offered the Cxxxx meant little because many less-than-competent job applicants possessed it.
So there is an inconsistency there. Great performers with the Cxxxx. Poor performers with the Cxxxx. There isn’t a correlation between the Cxxxx and performance.
For a purchasing certification to matter, it has to be recognized for the measurable difference it makes in the workplace performance and results of every single person that earns it. That was – and remains – our vision for the SPSM® Certification.
No, the SPSM® doesn’t have the household name recognition that the CPA has just yet. But on July 1, 2009 – the five year anniversary of the SPSM® – we’ll be making an announcement that will get the SPSM® one step closer.
The purchasing certification landscape is about to change dramatically and permanently, my friends…
To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
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