If you work in manufacturing or inventory control, APICS certification is likely a requirement of your job. However, if you consult to industries interested in supply chain management and want to improve your credibility, APICS certification may be of interest. Offered by the Association for Operations Management, APICS certification provides a professional credential for operations management.

Series of Tests

Typically, you must take five different exams for a CPIM (Certified Professional in Inventory Management) or the newer CSCP (Certified Supply Chain Professional). These tests cover basic concepts such as supply chain management and economic order quantities, as well as abstract concepts such as just-in-time inventories.

Fellowship

Passage of all of the exams at 90 percent or above provides you with a CFPIM, which is a fellowship status in APICS, a position of high esteem.

Training

Becoming certified is no easy task and requires significant study and training. You can do this on your own or take a course.

During Testing

Certification examinations are offered routinely. You may bring only an English-language dictionary and a calculator that cannot be programmed. All other materials will be supplied.

Costs

Besides the cost of the exams themselves, which are typically about $150 per exam, consider the cost of any training session. This can cost up to $1,800 per session. Self-study is less expensive, about $300 for the study tools, but it requires significant discipline.