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The Benefits of Becoming a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP)

Introduction Do you have a passion for event planning? Are you looking for a way to stand out in the competitive world of event management? Look no further than the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification....

Introduction

Do you have a passion for event planning? Are you looking for a way to stand out in the competitive world of event management? Look no further than the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification. Created by the Events Industry Council (EIC) in 1985, the CMP certification is the most recognized professional certification for event organizers and event designers. In this article, we'll explore the reasons why becoming a CMP can give you a competitive advantage, enhance your credibility, and open doors to new opportunities in the industry.

What is CMP?

CMP Logo Image: CMP Logo

The Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification was introduced by the Events Industry Council (EIC) to recognize and validate the skills and expertise of event professionals. Since its inception, it has become the gold standard for event planners worldwide. Whether you're an event organizer or an event designer, having a CMP certification can significantly boost your career prospects.

Reasons to become a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP)

For meeting professionals, obtaining a CMP certification offers numerous benefits. Beyond showcasing your knowledge and experience in event planning, being a CMP demonstrates your professionalism and dedication to delivering exceptional events. Let's explore some of the advantages that come with being a certified event planner:

1. Building Trust with Clients

When it comes to attracting new clients, your CMP certification can be a powerful tool. Clients often look for professionals who have the expertise and experience to handle their events with precision and professionalism. By displaying your CMP credential, you can instill confidence in potential clients and differentiate yourself from the competition.

2. Peace of Mind for Clients

Certified event planners inspire trust and provide peace of mind for clients. Your CMP certification assures clients that you have the necessary skills and knowledge to execute successful events. This trust enables your clients to relax and focus on other aspects of their event, knowing that you have everything under control.

3. Industry Recognition and Networking Opportunities

By becoming a CMP, you join a community of industry-recognized professionals. This opens up networking opportunities and allows you to connect with like-minded individuals who share the same passion for event planning. Additionally, industry suppliers and venues may offer better deals and support to CMP-certified professionals, further enhancing your ability to deliver exceptional events.

4. Advantages for Employers

For employers in the event management industry, having CMP-certified professionals on their team is a mark of excellence. Hiring certified event planners enables businesses to build a competent team that sets them apart in the marketplace. Moreover, having certified employees enhances client confidence and reduces the need for extensive training.

CMP statistics

CMP popularity in the US Image: CMP popularity in the US

As of October 2021, there are over 12,200 Certified Meeting Professionals worldwide, with approximately 90% of them located in the United States. The US boasts an impressive ratio of 33 CMPs for every one million people.

Highest rate of Certified Meeting Professionals:

  • Virginia has the highest rate of CMPs, with 108 CMPs for every one million residents.
  • Alexandria, Virginia, has the highest percentage of CMPs per capita, with 1 out of every 777 residents holding a CMP certification.
  • Chicago has the largest community of Certified Event Planners, with 317 professionals in the city.

Lowest rate of Certified Meeting Professionals:

  • Connecticut and Mississippi have the lowest rate of CMPs, with less than one CMP per one million residents.

CMP certification eligibility

Events Industry Council - The organization behind CMP Image: Events Industry Council - The organization behind CMP

To be eligible for the CMP certification, you must meet certain requirements, including experience, education, and passing an exam. The criteria for eligibility are as follows:

  • 24 months of full-time work experience in the meetings industry.
  • A degree in Event Management or Hospitality or an additional 12 months of full-time work experience (36 months total) in the meetings industry.
  • 25 hours of continuing education or 200 hours of internship work experience in the past five years.

Applicants interested in obtaining the CMP-HC certification must first hold a CMP certification. CMP-HC certification requires passing an additional exam, paying additional fees, and demonstrating experience in healthcare events.

The CMP exam

The CMP exam consists of 165 multiple-choice questions that evaluate a meeting professional's knowledge and skills. The passing score is 55, and the point value assigned to each question may vary. Some questions are mandatory and must be answered correctly to pass the exam. The exam is computer-based and takes approximately 3.5 hours to complete. Results are available shortly after submission, and successful candidates receive their certificates within four weeks.

Candidates can take the exam at authorized test centers worldwide or online. The Events Industry Council has partnered with a test administration company to operate these test centers.

CMP certification application

Applicants can submit their CMP certification applications through the Event Industry Council's website. The application process includes the following steps:

  1. Agree to CMP policies and Standards of Conduct.
  2. Submit a CV detailing your professional experience.
  3. Provide session descriptions and proof of attendance to demonstrate 25 hours of continuing education.

Proof of attendance can be in the form of a registration copy or badge scan. The EIC pre-approves education activities, and applicants need to report the number of hours completed. The application review process typically takes between 6-8 weeks, with the response sent via email.

To submit your CMP application, visit the Event Industry Council website. In case the application is not approved, applicants have the option to appeal to the Events Industry Council. If approved, candidates become eligible to take the exam within one year of application approval. In the event of failing the exam, applicants can retake it after paying the exam fee and waiting for a period of ninety days between tests.

CMP certification costs

The CMP application fee ranges between $225 to $250, and the exam fee is $475. If a candidate needs to retake the exam after the initial year, they will be required to pay the exam fee again. If the exam is not passed within one year of the application, the candidate must reapply.

CMP renewal and revocation

CMP certification is valid for five years. During this period, certificate holders have the option to renew their certification without the need to retake the exam. Renewal requires paying the application fees on time. However, the Event Industry Council holds the authority to revoke a CMP certificate in cases of violating the CMP Standards of Conduct or any other misconduct.

Preparing for a CMP exam

To help candidates familiarize themselves with the CMP exam format, the Events Industry Council offers two practice exams featuring questions from previous exams. These practice exams can aid in understanding the test structure and prepare candidates for success.

Additionally, the Event Industry Council website recommends several manuals that can be ordered directly from their page, with prices ranging from $35 to $100 each. Meeting Professionals International (MPI) also offers an Online Bootcamp where applicants can receive comprehensive preparation for the exam. The cost to participate in the Bootcamp varies depending on registration date and MPI membership.

So, if you're ready to take your event planning career to the next level, consider pursuing the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification. With its recognized status, industry advantages, and potential networking opportunities, becoming a CMP can be the key to unlocking a world of possibilities in the event management industry.

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