STC Certification

Subject: STC Certification
From: John Posada <jposada -at- NOTES -dot- CC -dot- BELLCORE -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 12 Jan 1996 10:17:38 -0500

I've been watching this certification issue being discussed for some time and I
thought you might like to know how another association that I USED to be
involved with worked this situation.

There is an association called ARMA. the Association for Records Managers and
Administrators. This national association, with about 7,000 members, was
composed of people that were interested in the field of managing an
organization's business records. This included corporate records, government
records, private and public sector, etc. Think of all the documents and
records that I company will create (yes, even technical documents) during its
day-to-day operation. Personnel records, tax records, sales records, medical
records, etc.

This association offered certification. It was known as CRM (Certified Records
Manager) and it was considered in this field like a CPA would be in accounting.

The idea behind this certification was not to prevent someone not certified
from working in the business, but to enhance the value of someone that was
certified...just like you can be an accountant without being a CPA.

Some companies only wanted CRMs to run their records management program, just
like firms only want a CPA to run their accounting department and others hired
CRMs as consultants on special projects, etc. In many instances, this
certification was worth an additional 5% to 25% in salaries, rates or fees.

This certification was handled by the ICRM (Institute for Certified Records
Managers).

The ICRM was an independent organization, yet at the same time, ARMA was its
parent organization. The independence was to preserve the autonomy of the
organization and hence eliminate the possibility of having ARMA turn it into a
rubber-stamp.

To gain this certification, you had to meet several criteria. If I remember
right, this included the following:

* A minimum number of years as a records manager or a number of years in the
records management 'biz.
* Nomination by an existing CRM
* Pass an eleven ( I think it was this number) part test. (Yes, you could
take these section over a period of time)
* Be published at least once in a trade-related publication
* Be accepted by a committee of ICRM
* Demonstrate each year that you've worked on your own professional
development by doing things such as getting additional training, conducting
training courses, publishing additional articles, speaking at records related
functions, furthering the records management "word", etc. Yes, you could loose
your certification.

Should you attain this certification, you could, if you wanted, place the
designation CRM after your name when dealing with records management stuff
(resumes, selling of your services, etc.)

I guess the whole point with this message is to demonstrate that professional
certification can be done, there are advantages to it and to some, it's worth
attaining.

John Posada
Technical Writer
Bell Communications Research, Piscataway, NJ
(908) 699-5839 (W)
jposada -at- notes -dot- cc -dot- bellcore -dot- com (W)
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