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Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.) Recertification FAQs



Common Certification Forms

  1. C.P.M. Original and Original Lifetime Certification Application (224 KB)
  2. C.P.M. Recertification and Lifetime Certification Application (683 KB)
  3. Exam Score Request (12 KB)
  4. Work Experience Documentation (22 KB)
  5. Conference Documentation Forms
  6. Continuing Education Documentation

Can I still recertify when ISM no longer issues Original C.P.M.s?

At this time, ISM has no plans to stop the recertification process for the C.P.M. program. Current C.P.M.s must maintain their designation in good standing. If C.P.M.s lapse past their grace period, they will not be able to recertify.

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How do I recertify my C.P.M.?

To be recertified for the C.P.M., you must apply every five years and have earned 84 CEHs (Continuing Education Hours) during your current certification period. At least 56 CEHs must come from education or professional development, while no more than 28 CEHs may come from contributions to the profession.

CEHs may be earned in the following categories:

  1. College Courses (Taken or Taught)
  2. Continuing Education (Taken or Taught)
  3. Contributions to the Profession

Please submit your C.P.M. Recertification application no earlier than 120 days prior to the expiration date on your current certificate.

Please read "How do I earn Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)?" for more details.

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How do I earn Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)?

There are several ways to earn CEHs.

  • Attend and pass (or teach) college courses:
    • 14 CEHs will be given for each semester hour completed in the following areas: Purchasing, materials management, supply management, management or other business-related subject matter (e.g. accounting, management, marketing, computers, economics, law, engineering, traffic management, communications, finance, statistics, physical sciences and behavioral sciences.
    • 7 CEHs will be given for most other three semester credit hour courses -- that's 7 CEHs for the entire course.
  • Attend or present a public seminar or conference
  • Business-related training provided by your employer
  • Correspondence courses
  • Publishing an article in an established purchasing or trade magazine or a refereed journal

Applicable topics for articles include:

  • Supply management
  • Purchasing
  • Accounting
  • Finance or other business related courses
  • Computer classes
  • Job training

All educational events must be at least one hour in length to qualify toward recertification. ISM does not need to pre-approve your courses. Each candidate is required to track their own continuing education hours earned.

ISM does not require that the continuing education be taken through ISM. However, ISM does offer numerous ways to earn CEHs (ISM-sponsored seminars, conferences, online courses, and more). We recommend that you download the C.P.M. Recertification application from our website to review all of the requirements.

Other opportunities for CEHs:

ISM seminars are an excellent opportunity for you to earn CEHs. ISM currently offers a variety of different seminars across the country on various dates throughout the year. Take advantage of ISM's line-up of educational seminars and earn CEHs per seminar.

ISM's Annual International Supply Management Conference and Educational Exhibit has numerous workshops in which to earn CEHs.

ISM's Knowledge Center brings supply management education and professional development into the comfort of your own home or office — or even when you're on the road. Online courses adjust to your lifestyle and schedule. In addition, ISM offers online learning opportunities available anytime, anywhere.

ISM also offers self-study courses for your convenience. These courses are in the form of workbooks, and upon completion of the requirements, candidates receive CEH credit.

ISM affiliates are also an excellent resource for CEHs. Many affiliates offer courses through local colleges and universities. Candidates can also earn CEHs by attending monthly affiliate meetings. Contact the affiliate in your area or visit its Web site to find out what programs are available.

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Are there any low cost ways to earn CEH's?

Need to earn Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)? Short on funds to pay for training? Don't despair. ISM has several low-cost options to keep your CPSM®, CSM™, C.P.M. or A.P.P. certification current. Some are even free. Click here for the complete list.

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My C.P.M. has expired — what do I do now?

ISM provides each candidate with a one (1) year grace period to recertify their designation without penalty. During this grace period the individual is no longer a C.P.M. Candidates in their grace period should cease using their designation until they are recertified by ISM. This grace period does not lengthen your certification period — using this grace period will not change your next expiration date. Your expiration date will remain five years from when you were last certified or recertified.

If you do not postmark your recertification application within one year of the expiration date, you will not be allowed to reinstate your C.P.M. ISM does not make exceptions to this policy.

ISM will attempt to send reminder e-mails or postcards approximately 1 year and 6 months prior to a candidate's expiration date. It is the responsibility of each candidate to know when their certification expires. The expiration date for your certification is clearly printed on the bottom left of the certificate you received when you were certified.

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I understand the C.P.M. program is transitioning to a recertification only program. When is the last time I can take a C.P.M. exam?

The C.P.M. designation is transitioning to a recertification only program. The last day that ISM administered the C.P.M. Exams was December 31, 2009. You must have already successfully passed all four modules of the C.P.M. in order to apply and achieve the designation. Remember your exam scores expire five years from the date the earliest exam was taken or by December 31, 2014, whichever comes first.

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What are the C.P.M. Lifetime Certification requirements?

C.P.M.s applying for Lifetime certification must document at least 18 years of full-time professional supply management experience. Candidates need to earn CEHs through the year in which they meet the requirements for Lifetime certification, regardless of when they apply for the designation. Applicants for Lifetime certification should apply as soon as they are eligible.

CEHs are determined on a prorated basis, since the candidate's last certificate date. At least two-thirds of the hours must be educational in nature. One-third may be earned in the professional contributions category. Refer to the prorated point scale below to determine the number of CEHs required.

Years Since Certification Began CEHs Needed for Lifetime C.P.M.
1 year or less 21 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
1 but less than 2 years 35 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
2 but less than 3 years 56 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
3 but less than 4 years 70 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
4 but less than 5 years 84 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)

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What dates do I need to remember?

The last day to apply for the C.P.M. Designation is December 31, 2014.


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How can I keep updated on ISM's credentialing programs?

Information will be provided on the ISM website, in Supply Line 2055: Certification Update, in NewsLine, through affiliate leadership and via e-mail updates to subscribers. Be sure to sign up to receive CPSM® updates.

If you have questions or comments, contact ISM Professional Credentials at: certification@ism.ws.

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