There was an important announcement that may capture your attention if you are an individual member of APICS (The Association of Operations Management), or if your company holds a membership to the Supply Chain Operations Council (SCOR).  Both organizations have agreed to provide uniform member-discount access to each others training and certification programs.

What does this mean, you ask?

If your company has a SCOR membership, you will receive APICS member rates for all certification exams, including the CSCP (Certified Supply Chain Professional) exam, as well the APICS International Conference and certain other designated events.  If you hold individual membership in APICS, you now can take advantage of member rates for SCOR training programs, including SCOR model certification.  APICS members can also participate in the SCORmark benchmarking program, which provides organizations the ability to rate their performance within database of industry-specific SCOR performance metrics.

You can view more detailed information at either the SCOR or APICS designated explanation website pages.

In my view, this announcement is yet another reflection of the reality of the current recessionary economy worldwide.  Both organizations are feeling some effects on membership renewals, and want to respond to member needs for broader value in a professional membership. Discounted access to each other’s training is a first step. 

I can envision broader opportunities as well.  SCOR has a major initiative underway in identifying future supply chain skill requirements under the Global Supply Chain Professional Development and Skills Committee.  It would be great if the findings of this SCOR effort can be an input to future CSCP certification. 

Before my readers speculate, let me further clarify that this announcement is not a merger, but rather a pragmatic business decision that meets mutual benefit.  SCOR gets broader exposure to its SCOR Model training programs and APICS can broaden its availability of supply chain training offerings as well as the potential to access a deeper body of supply chain knowledge.

Another obvious question for readers is whether this a sign of broader relationships among professional groups that umbrella our profession? What about the Council of Supply Chain Management (CSCMP) and the Institute of Supply Chain Management (ISM), both of which offer training, conferences, and a body of knowledge to supply chain management professionals?  When will they reach out for broader value for members? Only time will tell.

In the meantime, take advantage of this specific opportunity.  You are also welcomed to share your reactions in the comments section related to this post.

Bob Ferrari

Full Disclosure Statement:  I am a professional member of APICS, CSMP, and SCOR.  I also currently serve as a volunteer member of the SCOR North America Leadership Team, as well as the APICS CSCP Certification Exam Review Committee.