ISM's Certification Market Study Supports the New Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM) Qualification

ISM's 2004 Certification Market Study supports the creation of a new comprehensive qualification that will recognize the expanded education, skills and experience needed for successful supply managers in the 21st century. Foremost among the study's conclusions is that the new professional qualification must reflect higher skill levels across all disciplines within supply management. In development since 2003, the CPSM will focus on strategic, high-level supply management, culminating in senior management level expertise. The CPSM will be available in 2008.

Several main points which came out of the Certification Market Study are:

  • Rapid changes in technology, methods and scope of supply management will increase the need for education, training and certification.
  • The new role of supply management requires continuous expansion of the knowledge base for supply personnel who are working in a rapidly changing environment. ISM must move quickly in meeting the demand for new knowledge and skills.
  • A blend of new skills and knowledge needs must be developed by top professionals in multiple fields. This curriculum must also address the needs of professionals whose goal is to enter senior management.
  • Global supply management concepts will be intensified and expanded in critical content areas.

"The CPSM will address the realities of supply management workplace complexities including globalization, greater use of technology and expanded competencies that supply management professionals employ to drive value in their organizations," states ISM Chief Executive Officer Paul Novak, C.P.M., A.P.P.

Supply management professionals must understand that the CPSM will include the entire curriculum of the C.P.M.s purchasing focus, plus an equal share of the other major disciplines within supply management — strategic sourcing, contract management, negotiations and much more.

"The recommendation to develop an expanded supply management qualification is also based on extensive job analysis of supply management competencies," says ISM Certification Committee Chair Susan I. Scott, C.P.M., A.P.P. "ISM has established a legacy of certification excellence through innovation and expertise. The CPSM will strengthen this legacy."

ISM feels it is important for all supply managers to know that this change in credentialing is designed to enhance the abilities of all professionals in supply management, including those whose main focus is the purchasing function. The new qualification will build a senior management level understanding of the entire supply chain which will far surpass the abilities of any single designation — even the C.P.M.

To see Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and to sign-up for e-mail updates on the CPSM, go to For more information, contact ISM Certification at or call 800/888-6276, extension 3027.