CICM creates new Professional Standards to champion and benchmark excellence in credit management
(January, 2022) A new set of Professional Standards that defines the unique skills and contribution that credit professionals deliver in protecting and growing business and the economy has been launched by the Chartered Institute of Credit Management (CICM), the largest recognised professional body in the world for the credit management community.
A first of its kind for the profession, the new Professional Standards establish a benchmark and help demonstrate the enormous variety of roles within credit at every level, local and global, to attract new employees into the industry and define what skills they need to succeed in an exciting, dynamic and rewarding career.
The standards similarly act as a showcase for existing professionals – and members of the CICM in particular – to further promote what they do not only within their own organisations, but also within the wider business community. The Standards serve not as a qualification, but rather as an indication of continual professional development and lifelong learning, to benchmark an individual’s progress and identify active goals and targets as part of a realistic career pathway.
Debbie Tuckwood, the CICM’s Chief Advisor for Professional Development who is leading the initiative, says the new Professional Standards will help transform how a career in credit is perceived: “This is all about raising the profile of people who work in credit and collections, not only building their confidence, but also helping businesses understand what credit and debt professionals are all about, and what they can do.
“There are many out there who have only a very narrow view of a career in credit, if any understanding at all. Through the Professional Standards we can shift these perceptions, attract more talent into the industry, and demonstrate the skills of existing professionals and see how they benchmark against their peers.”
In terms of the detail, the Professional Standards have three key focus areas: business skills; personal skills; and behaviours. All are essential to help credit and collections professionals progress, and are mapped against the four levels of CICM membership: Affiliates; Associates; Members; and Fellows. The Standards also provide detail and guidance on a large range of technical areas and specialisms such as enforcement, export credit management, consumer credit risk and cash collections.
The Professional Standards have been developed in partnership with several leading bodies and representatives from organisations including the UK Government’s Cabinet Office and Department of Work and Pensions, Imperial College London, Johnson and Johnson, Aggregate Industries, nPower, United Utilities, Adecco, Arvato Financial Solutions and HSBC UK.
Along with the Professional Standards, the CICM is working with its partners to develop a self-assessment tool to help members plan their development and identify relevant support to further their careers from the CICM’s member services including training and qualifications.
Sue Chapple, Chief Executive of the CICM says the new Professional Standards will allow the Institute to celebrate the breadth of skills its members possess: “The CICM Professional Standards are a game changer for the credit and debt management profession generally and for our members specifically,” she says. “They will help businesses better understand the value of employing a CICM member as well as helping those new to the profession, inspiring lifelong learning and helping them build careers in credit and debt management.”
The full set of Professional Standards will be launched on 21 February 2022 and will be available on-demand to all members as a resource.