Sunday, October 4, 2009

What is CPCE and CMP?

“Start with a company that you can trust......….Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited and NACE national award winning full service event planning firm with Hawaii’s ONLY Certified Professional Catering Executive (CPCE) and Certified Meeting Planner (CMP) dedicated to service excellence”

The above paragraph is listed on our Hawaii Weddings and Events website and I’m often asked what the CPCE and CMP designations represent and how does it help you.

The CPCE is all aspects of catering (see core competencies listed below) which is both on-premise (ie: hotel, facility) as well as off-premise which is for such locations as Lanikuhonua, Kualoa Ranch or Loulu Palms.

The CMP exam is geared more towards the convention, festival and corporate side of my secondary business (President of Hawaii Event Group) which includes a corporate event at the Honolulu Zoo for 2800 guests, assisting with logistics for the Pan Pacific Festival (Waikiki Block Party), the first ever Personal Finance Expo and the very successful fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club of Honolulu.

Below are excerpts from the respective website that give you a better understanding of the experience and education level you have to have just to have the opportunity to take the exams.

CERTIFIED PROFESSIONAL CATERING EXECUTIVE (CPCE). The National Association of Catering Executives (NACE) encourages the professional development of caterers and event specialists through voluntary participation in its certification program. Achievement of the Certified Professional Catering Executive (CPCE) designation demonstrates expertise in catering earned by taking a comprehensive examination that covers the seven core competencies of the catering and event management industry.

The goals of the CPCE program are to:
• Establish a nationally recognized standard of competence in catering.
• Promote professional commitment to excellence in catering.
• Endorse active participation in educational offerings that support the continued competency of Certified Professional Catering Executives.
• Aid employers in identifying qualified catering personnel.
• Enhance the professional image of the catering executive.
• Provide a sense of personal achievement for the advancement of one’s career.

In order to sit for the CPCE certification exam, a minimum of 30 points which is comprised of the following components
• Experience in Catering or Event Management
• Education and Continuing Education
• Industry membership and leadership positions
• Professional achievements (seminar presenter, author of published article, teacher, other certifications and awards)

Seven core competencies are on the CPCE exam:
1) Accounting
2) Beverage Management
3) Catering Services
4) Contracts and Agreements
5) Event Management
6) Food Production
7) Sales and Marketing


The foremost certification of the meetings, conventions and exhibitions industry, the CMP program recognizes individuals who have achieved the industry's highest standard of professionalism. Established in 1985, the CMP credential increases the proficiency of meeting professionals by:

• Identifying a body of knowledge;
• Establishing a level of knowledge and performance necessary for certification;
• Stimulating the advancement of the art and science of meeting management;
• Increasing the value of practitioners to their employers;
• Recognizing and raising industry standards, practices and ethics;
• Maximizing the value received from the products and services provided by Certified Meeting Professionals.

Through the CMP program, individuals who are employed in meeting management pursue continuing education, increase their industry involvement, and gain industry-wide recognition. The requirements for certification are based on professional experience and a written examination. Currently, over 13,000 individuals in 35 countries and territories have earned the CMP designation.

The CMP Board of Directors includes one representative from each planner organization of CIC and four representatives from the supplier category. The CMP Board represents the profession's diversity and serve as a voice for stakeholders who have an interest in maintaining a high industry standards.

• Minimum 3 years experience in meeting management to apply
• Application must be approved with a minimum of 90 points
• Pass the CMP Exam

We worked hard to achieve the CPCE and CMP designations and truly believe continued education is the key to our success.

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