CMP's Global Reach: Committing to the Advancement of the Profession
By Marilyn Healey President , Association for Convention Operations Management | February 19, 2010
In a downturned global hospitality and tourism industry, one thing has remained consistently strong¯the number of meeting planners and meeting services professionals earning the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation. The number of new CMP certifications has remained steady numbering approximately 1,000 annually for each of the past several years, according to the Convention Industry Council (CIC) which administers and manages the CMP exam.
Due to increased global meetings industry demand for the CMP designation, the CIC recently announced additional CMP exams to be held outside of North America in February, 2010. Meeting Planners International (MPI) has also lent its support to the inaugural CMP Global Exam Day which includes testing locations in Cancun, Mexico (in conjunction with MPI's Meet Different convention), South Korea, Singapore, South Africa and Italy.
"The CIC is responding to positive and increased demand for the CMP exam globally," says Keith Patrick, CMP and former chair of the CIC CMP Board of Directors. "The world has shrunk a lot in my lifetime and now I see it shrinking even faster. We're all in the same little boat and the more we standardize meeting planning practices globally, the easier it is to produce consistent and efficient meeting planning results."
The CMP certification is obtained through successful completion of the CMP exam which comprehensively covers the body of knowledge and skills essential to excellence in meeting planning and management disciplines.
Additionally, the CMP Board of Directors has approved a new streamlined CMP application which took effect January 1, 2010. The updated application has been modified to ensure relevancy to the broader global meeting profession while maintaining the high standards of the credential.
The revised application focuses on work experience and education and has eliminated some of the sections on industry involvement and a complicated points system. It also gives credit for the experience obtained by candidates who hold a degree in meeting or hospitality management.
"While the certification has been global for a number of years, the CMP program continues to evolve to be relevant to as large an audience as possible," explains Cary Bradley, a CMP and Board member representing the Association for Convention Operations Management (ACOM), the association for convention services management professionals.
Though slowed somewhat by economic conditions in 2008 and 2009, globalization continues to emerge as a major factor in the meetings industry, especially as hotel and resort companies increase their global presence, according to Patrick, a former ACOM president.