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Top 10 Parts Clerk Certifications

This article discusses the top certifications for parts clerks and provides an overview of their requirements and benefits.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 16 min read

Certifications for parts clerks are important in the job market because they demonstrate a level of knowledge and expertise that employers value. A certification can show that an applicant has the necessary skills and qualifications to perform the duties of a parts clerk, including identifying and ordering parts, stocking shelves, and tracking inventory. Additionally, certifications can give employers confidence that they are hiring someone who is well-versed in the industry, understands safety protocols, and is able to handle customer inquiries. With a certification on their resume, applicants may be more likely to be hired for a position over someone without one.

The purpose of this article is to review some of the top certifications for Parts Clerks and explain how they can help advance a Parts Clerk's career.

What are Parts Clerk Certifications?

Parts clerk certification is a professional certification program designed to help individuals working in the automotive parts industry become knowledgeable and proficient in the areas of inventory management, parts ordering and customer service. This certification provides an individual with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in their role as a parts clerk, helping them stand out from other applicants when applying for positions. With this certification, individuals will have the opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to the industry and demonstrate their ability to work in a fast-paced environment. The certification also provides individuals with additional career opportunities, such as working in higher-level roles or opening their own business. By becoming certified, individuals can also gain access to special discounts and exclusive deals from suppliers, manufacturers and other vendors.

Pro Tip: When pursuing parts clerk certification, make sure to take the time to research the various credentials available and determine which one best meets your needs. Many employers require a certain level of certification for parts clerks, so it is important to be aware of what is required in order to ensure you are able to obtain the job you desire.

Related: What does a Parts Clerk do?

Top 10 Parts Clerk Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Parts Clerks today.

1. Certified Parts Clerk (CPC)

A Certified Parts Clerk (CPC) is a professional designation that recognizes the knowledge, skills, and abilities of those working in the parts management field. This certification is offered by the Automotive Parts Services Group (APSG), an association of automotive parts suppliers and distributors. The certification is designed to enhance the professionalism of parts clerks by recognizing their expertise in inventory control, customer service, and other related areas.

The CPC exam consists of two parts: a written multiple-choice exam and a hands-on practical test. The written portion covers topics such as inventory control, customer service, product knowledge, pricing strategies, and more. The practical test requires candidates to demonstrate their ability to accurately identify parts from diagrams and catalogs.

The CPC exam can be taken at any APSG-approved testing center or online through the APSG website. It typically takes about four hours to complete both portions of the exam. Candidates must pay a fee for each part of the exam; fees vary depending on location but typically range from $50-$100 per part.

To become certified, candidates must pass both portions of the exam with a score of 70% or higher. Once certified, CPCs are required to renew their certification every three years by taking an updated version of the exam or completing continuing education credits approved by APSG.

2. Certified Automotive Parts Professional (CAPP)

Certified Automotive Parts Professional (CAPP) is a certification program designed to recognize the knowledge and expertise of automotive parts professionals. It is administered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). The certification requires an individual to demonstrate their knowledge of automotive parts, systems, and services.

The CAPP program consists of two exams: a written exam and a practical exam. The written exam covers topics such as parts identification, ordering procedures, pricing, inventory management, customer service, and diagnostic procedures. The practical exam requires the candidate to demonstrate their ability to identify and order parts correctly.

The CAPP certification takes approximately 6-8 weeks to complete. To get certified, individuals must first complete an online application form. Once approved, they will receive instructions on how to register for the exams. After passing both exams with a minimum score of 70%, candidates will be awarded the Certified Automotive Parts Professional (CAPP) designation.

The cost of the CAPP program varies depending on where you take it from; however, it typically costs around $200-$300 USD for both exams combined.

3. Automotive Parts Inventory Management Certification (APIMC)

The Automotive Parts Inventory Management Certification (APIMC) is an industry-recognized certification program developed by the Automotive Parts Remanufacturers Association (APRA). It is designed to provide automotive parts inventory managers with the knowledge and skills needed to effectively manage their inventories.

The APIMC certification program consists of two courses: a four-day classroom course and a one-day online course. The classroom course covers topics such as inventory management principles, inventory control systems, inventory accuracy, and forecasting techniques. The online course focuses on best practices for managing automotive parts inventories.

It typically takes around five days to complete both the classroom and online courses in order to receive the APIMC certification. The cost of the APIMC certification program is $1,200 USD. This includes both the classroom and online courses as well as all materials required for successful completion of the program.

In order to get certified, applicants must successfully complete both courses and pass a final exam with a score of 80% or higher. Upon successful completion of the program, applicants will be awarded an APIMC certificate that is valid for three years.

4. Automotive Parts Specialist Certification (APSC)

The Automotive Parts Specialist Certification (APSC) is a certification program offered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). It is designed to recognize those who have demonstrated knowledge and expertise in the field of automotive parts.

The APSC consists of two tests: a general test and a parts specialist test. The general test covers topics such as automotive systems, tools and equipment, customer service, and business management. The parts specialist test covers topics such as cataloging and inventory control, pricing, ordering procedures, core returns, warranties, and other related subjects.

It typically takes about four weeks to complete the APSC program. To get certified, you must first pass both tests with at least 70% accuracy. Once you have passed both tests, you will receive your certification from ASE.

The cost of the APSC program varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it costs around $200 to take the tests and receive your certification.

5. Automotive Warehouse and Logistics Professional (AWLP)

Automotive Warehouse and Logistics Professional (AWLP) is a certification program offered by the Automotive Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA). This program is designed to provide automotive warehouse personnel with the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively manage the storage, handling, and distribution of automotive parts.

The AWLP certification requires applicants to complete an online course consisting of four modules: warehouse operations, inventory management, logistics management, and customer service. The course takes approximately 10 hours to complete. After completing the course, applicants must pass a proctored exam in order to receive their certification.

The cost of the AWLP certification varies depending on the individual's membership status with AWDA. For non-members, the cost is $450. Members pay $350 for their certification.

Once certified, individuals are eligible for career advancement opportunities within the automotive industry as well as discounts on products and services from AWDA partners.

6. Certified Automotive Parts Manager (CAPM)

Certified Automotive Parts Manager (CAPM) is a professional certification program designed to recognize and promote excellence in the field of automotive parts management. It is offered by the Automotive Parts Management Council (APMC), an organization dedicated to advancing the knowledge and skills of automotive parts professionals.

The CAPM program consists of four levels: Certified Automotive Parts Manager (CAPM), Certified Automotive Parts Technician (CAPT), Certified Automotive Parts Professional (CAPP), and Master Certified Automotive Parts Professional (MCAPP). Each level requires a different set of qualifications, as well as a certain amount of experience in the field. To become certified at any level, applicants must pass an examination administered by APMC.

The CAPM program typically takes about two years to complete, although some individuals may be able to complete it more quickly depending on their experience and educational background. The cost for the program varies depending on the level being pursued, but typically ranges from $500-$1,000 USD.

To get started with the CAPM program, applicants must first register with APMC and pay a registration fee. Once registered, they will receive access to study materials and practice exams that can help them prepare for the certification exam. After passing the exam, they will be officially certified as a CAPM or other applicable level within the program.

7. Certified Automotive Parts Technician (CAPT)

Certified Automotive Parts Technician (CAPT) is a professional certification offered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). The CAPT certification is designed to recognize those individuals who possess the knowledge and skills necessary to accurately identify, select, and install automotive parts. It is an important credential for automotive parts professionals who work in retail stores, service centers, or other parts-related businesses.

To become certified as a CAPT, you must pass an exam that covers topics such as vehicle systems and components, aftermarket parts selection and installation, safety procedures, and customer service. The exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and takes two hours to complete.

The cost of the exam varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it costs around $50-$60 for the exam itself plus any applicable taxes or fees. You can also purchase study materials from ASE or third-party vendors which may cost additional money.

Once you have passed the CAPT exam, your certification will be valid for five years before needing to be renewed. To renew your certification you must either retake the exam or submit proof of continuing education credits in order to maintain your credentials.

8. Certified Auto Parts Consultant (CAPC)

Certified Auto Parts Consultant (CAPC) is a certification program designed to provide automotive parts professionals with the knowledge and skills necessary to become an effective consultant. CAPC is offered by the Automotive Parts Association of America (APAA) and provides a comprehensive curriculum that covers all aspects of the auto parts industry.

The CAPC program consists of three levels: Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced. Each level requires a specific number of hours of coursework and online study materials, as well as successful completion of an exam. The Basic level requires 40 hours, the Intermediate level requires 80 hours, and the Advanced level requires 120 hours.

To obtain certification, individuals must complete all three levels within two years or less. Once all requirements are met, applicants will receive their official CAPC certificate from APAA.

The cost for the CAPC program varies depending on which level you choose to pursue. The Basic level costs $295; the Intermediate level costs $595; and the Advanced level costs $895. All fees are non-refundable and cover course materials and exams only; there are no additional fees for registration or membership in APAA.

9. Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Master Parts Specialist Certification

Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Master Parts Specialist Certification is a professional certification program designed to recognize and validate the knowledge, skills, and abilities of automotive parts specialists. It is administered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).

The ASE Master Parts Specialist Certification is a two-part exam that tests the technical knowledge of automotive parts specialists in areas such as parts identification, inventory control, customer service, and problem solving. The exam must be taken at an ASE-certified testing center and consists of a multiple-choice written test and a hands-on practical test. To pass the exam, candidates must score at least 70% on both sections.

It typically takes about 4 hours to complete the entire certification process. Candidates should allow additional time for registration, check-in, and any other administrative tasks prior to taking the exam.

To get certified as an ASE Master Parts Specialist, you must first meet certain eligibility requirements. These include having at least two years of experience working in an automotive parts store or dealership; passing a background check; and completing an approved training program or coursework related to automotive parts. Once you have met these requirements, you can register for the exam online or by mail through ASE’s website.

The cost of the ASE Master Parts Specialist Certification Exam is $135 USD (plus applicable taxes). This fee covers both the written and practical portions of the exam.

10. National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Parts Specialist Certification

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Parts Specialist Certification is a professional certification program that recognizes the knowledge and skill of automotive parts specialists. It is designed to ensure that automotive parts specialists have the necessary skills and knowledge to provide quality customer service and properly identify, diagnose, and recommend parts for repair or replacement.

To become ASE certified as a Parts Specialist, an individual must pass two tests: the ASE Parts Specialist Test (P1) and the ASE Parts Specialist Test (P2). The P1 test covers topics such as basic automotive systems, vehicle components, tools and equipment, and customer service. The P2 test covers topics such as advanced automotive systems, vehicle components, tools and equipment, and customer service. Both tests are administered by ASE-approved testing centers throughout the United States.

It typically takes between three to six months to complete both exams depending on how much time you dedicate to studying. To get started on your certification journey you will need to register with ASE online or by mail. This process requires payment of a registration fee which is currently $36 per exam plus a $37 non-refundable registration fee for each exam taken. After registering you will receive an email with instructions on how to schedule your exams at an approved testing center near you.

Once you have passed both exams you will be awarded your ASE Parts Specialist Certification which is valid for five years from the date of issue. You can renew your certification every five years by retaking both exams or by taking one refresher course provided by ASE in order to maintain your certification status.

Do You Really Need a Parts Clerk Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on a few factors. If you are looking to enter into the parts clerk field and do not have any prior experience, then a Parts Clerk Certificate may be beneficial in helping you land the job. A certificate can demonstrate to employers that you are knowledgeable of the field and have the necessary skills for success. It also serves as an indication of your commitment to learning and developing your skills in order to perform well in the position.

On the other hand, if you already have some experience in parts clerk work or are confident that you possess enough knowledge and skills for the job, then a Parts Clerk Certificate may not be necessary. Employers will likely be more impressed with hands-on experience than a piece of paper. However, if you want to stand out from other applicants and set yourself apart from the competition, then obtaining a Parts Clerk Certificate may be worth considering.

Ultimately, it is up to you to determine whether or not getting a Parts Clerk Certificate is right for you. Consider your current level of experience, desired career goals, and any other factors that may influence your decision before making a final choice.

Related: Parts Clerk Resume Examples

FAQs About Parts Clerk Certifications

1. What is a Parts Clerk Certification?

Answer: A Parts Clerk Certification is a credential that verifies the knowledge, skills, and abilities of a parts clerk in their field. It is typically earned by taking an exam or completing a program in order to demonstrate proficiency in areas such as inventory management, customer service, and supply chain management.

2. How do I become certified as a Parts Clerk?

Answer: To become certified as a Parts Clerk, you must complete an accredited program or pass an exam that tests your knowledge of the subject matter. You may also need to have prior experience in the field or related fields.

3. How long does it take to get certified as a Parts Clerk?

Answer: The length of time it takes to get certified as a Parts Clerk will depend on the specific requirements for certification and how much time you are able to dedicate to studying and preparing for the exam or program. Generally, it can take anywhere from several weeks to several months depending on your individual circumstances.

4. Are there any prerequisites for getting certified as a Parts Clerk?

Answer: Most certifying organizations have certain prerequisites that must be met before taking the certification exam such as having prior experience in the field or related fields, completing an accredited program, or passing an entry-level test. Be sure to check with the specific organization offering the certification for more information about their prerequisites.

5. Is there continuing education required after becoming certified as a Parts Clerk?

Answer: Yes, many certifying organizations require continuing education credits (CECs) in order to maintain your certification status over time. CECs are typically obtained through attending workshops, seminars, conferences, or other educational activities related to your profession

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