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Top 11 Shipping Manager Certifications

This article outlines the top certifications for shipping managers and provides information on how to obtain them.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 19 min read

Certifications are important for a shipping manager in the job market because they demonstrate professional competence and knowledge of shipping industry standards. Certifications can also provide employers with a way to verify that a potential employee has the necessary skills and experience needed to be successful in the job. In addition, certifications can serve as evidence of commitment and dedication to the profession, which can make a potential employee stand out from other applicants. Finally, certifications show employers that an individual is willing to invest time and effort into their own professional development, which is an attractive trait for any employer.

The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the top certifications for Shipping Managers and explain how they can help boost a shipping manager's career.

What are Shipping Manager Certifications?

Shipping Manager Certification is a professional certification program designed to provide individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to become effective shipping managers. The certification is designed to help those in the shipping and logistics industry stay current on the latest trends and technology, as well as gain an understanding of best practices for managing a successful shipping operation. The program covers topics such as supply chain management, international trade, customs regulations, transportation law, warehouse operations and safety.

The certification can help individuals demonstrate their expertise to employers or clients by providing them with the credentials needed to stand out from other applicants and candidates. It also gives employers assurance that their employees have the knowledge needed to effectively manage their shipping operations. Additionally, certified shipping managers may be eligible for higher salaries and better job opportunities due to their specialized knowledge. Overall, Shipping Manager Certification helps individuals gain the skills necessary for success in the field while simultaneously providing employers with qualified personnel who are prepared to lead their organization's shipping operations.

When considering a shipping manager certification, make sure to research the certifying organization and the requirements for the certification. Ensure that the certification is current and accepted by industry professionals, as well as relevant to your current or desired job role. Additionally, take advantage of any additional resources offered by the certifying organization, such as webinars or study guides, in order to fully prepare for the certification exam.

Related: What does a Shipping Manager do?

Top 11 Shipping Manager Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Shipping Managers today.

1. Certified Shipping Manager (CSM)

Certified Shipping Manager (CSM) is a professional certification program offered by the National Association of Certified Shipping Managers (NACSM). It is designed to provide recognition and credentials to individuals who demonstrate knowledge and proficiency in the field of shipping management.

The CSM program consists of two parts: a written exam and an online course. The written exam tests your knowledge of shipping regulations, procedures, and principles. The online course covers topics such as freight forwarding, customs clearance, logistics, and customer service.

It typically takes about three months to complete the CSM program. To get started, you must first register with NACSM and pay the registration fee. After that, you will need to complete the online course before taking the written exam. Once you have passed both components of the program, you will receive your official CSM certification from NACSM.

The cost for the CSM program varies depending on how quickly you want to complete it. Generally speaking, it costs around $750 for the registration fee plus any additional fees associated with taking the online course or written exam.

2. Certified International Logistics Manager (CILM)

Certified International Logistics Manager (CILM) is a professional certification program that provides individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to manage international logistics operations. It is designed to help professionals in the field of global supply chain management, customs brokerage, freight forwarding, and other related areas develop their skills and advance their careers.

The CILM program consists of three levels: Level 1 (Foundation), Level 2 (Intermediate), and Level 3 (Advanced). Each level requires successful completion of an exam and is valid for three years. To maintain certification, individuals must complete continuing education requirements every three years.

In order to become certified, individuals must first register with the Global Institute of Logistics (GIL). After registration, they will receive a study guide which outlines the topics that will be covered on the exam. They can then purchase exam vouchers from GIL or from an authorized training provider.

The cost of the CILM program varies depending on which level you are taking. The cost for Level 1 is $495 USD for members or $595 USD for non-members; the cost for Level 2 is $595 USD for members or $695 USD for non-members; and the cost for Level 3 is $695 USD for members or $795 USD for non-members.

Once registered and purchased an exam voucher, individuals can take their exams at any authorized testing center around the world. The exams are typically two hours long and consist of multiple choice questions covering topics such as global supply chain management, customs regulations, freight forwarding procedures, logistics operations management, and more.

3. Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)

Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) is a professional certification program offered by the Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM). The CSCP program is designed to provide professionals with the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively manage global supply chain activities. It covers topics such as customer service, inventory management, logistics, procurement, and more.

The CSCP program consists of three parts: an online self-study course, a comprehensive exam, and a professional development program. The self-study course takes approximately 30 hours to complete and includes interactive learning modules and practice exams. Once the self-study course is completed, candidates must pass the CSCP exam in order to become certified. The exam consists of 150 multiple choice questions and takes 3 hours to complete.

In order to qualify for the CSCP exam, candidates must have at least three years of professional experience in supply chain management or related fields. Candidates must also pay an application fee of $695 USD in order to register for the exam.

Once certified, professionals can use their CSCP credential to demonstrate their expertise in global supply chain management and show employers that they are qualified for positions that require advanced knowledge of supply chain processes.

4. Certified Logistics and Supply Chain Professional (CLSCP)

Certified Logistics and Supply Chain Professional (CLSCP) is a certification designed to recognize professionals who have achieved a high level of knowledge and expertise in the logistics and supply chain industry. The certification is awarded by the American Production and Inventory Control Society (APICS).

To become certified, individuals must pass an exam that covers topics such as inventory management, transportation, warehousing, supply chain operations, customer service, purchasing and procurement, and global logistics. The exam also includes questions on professional ethics.

The exam typically takes three to four hours to complete. It consists of multiple-choice questions and can be taken at any APICS approved testing center. There are no prerequisites for taking the exam; however, it is recommended that applicants have at least two years of experience in the field before attempting it.

The cost of taking the CLSCP exam varies depending on whether or not you are an APICS member. For non-members, the fee is $495 USD; for members, it is $395 USD. After passing the exam, there is an annual maintenance fee of $95 USD for non-members and $45 USD for members to maintain their certification status.

5. Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT)

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) is a professional membership body in the UK that provides qualifications, training, and support to individuals working in the logistics and transport sector. It was founded in 1919 and has over 30,000 members worldwide.

To become a member of CILT, you must have at least 5 years’ experience in the logistics and transport industry. You will also need to demonstrate your knowledge of the sector through an accredited qualification or by passing an assessment. Once you have met these requirements, you can apply for membership online or via post.

It takes around four weeks to process your application once it has been received. The cost of membership depends on which level you are applying for; student membership costs £18 per year, while full professional membership costs £142 annually.

Once accepted as a member, you will receive access to a range of benefits including discounts on conferences and events, access to industry resources and publications, networking opportunities with other members, and more.

6. American Production and Inventory Control Society (APICS)

The American Production and Inventory Control Society (APICS) is a professional association dedicated to the advancement of supply chain and operations management. It provides educational programs, training courses, certification programs, and conferences for individuals and organizations in the field.

APICS offers two levels of certification: Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) and Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP). The CPIM program focuses on production and inventory management topics such as demand planning, master scheduling, material requirements planning, forecasting, supplier relationships management, capacity planning, quality control, inventory control systems, and more. The CSCP program covers topics such as global supply chain strategies and tactics, customer relationship management, transportation management, warehouse management systems, international trade compliance regulations and practices.

It typically takes between 6-12 months to complete either certification program depending on the individual's background knowledge. To become certified by APICS an individual must pass a series of exams that cover the material presented in the course curriculum.

The cost of becoming certified depends on which level you are seeking certification for. For CPIM it costs $995 for members or $1125 for non-members to register for both parts of the exam. For CSCP it costs $695 for members or $795 for non-members to register for both parts of the exam. Additionally there are study materials available from APICS that are not included in these registration fees.

7. International Air Transport Association (IATA)

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is an international trade organization which represents, leads and serves the airline industry. It was founded in 1945 and has grown to become the leading global trade association for the world’s airlines, with over 290 members from more than 120 countries. IATA works to promote safe, reliable, secure and economical air travel worldwide.

It provides a wide range of services to its members, including setting standards for airline safety, security and efficiency; providing industry-wide guidance on operational procedures; promoting aviation development; and helping to ensure that passengers have a positive experience when travelling by air. IATA also acts as a facilitator for the negotiation of agreements between airlines and other stakeholders such as airports, governments and suppliers.

It typically takes several weeks or months to obtain IATA membership depending on the type of application submitted. Companies can apply online or submit a paper application form directly to IATA. The cost of joining IATA varies based on the size of the company and other factors. Generally speaking, membership fees are calculated using a combination of fixed fees plus variable charges based on annual revenue or passenger numbers carried.

8. Project Management Institute (PMI)

Project Management Institute (PMI) is a professional organization for project managers. It was founded in 1969 and is headquartered in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, USA. PMI provides a range of certifications related to project management, including the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification.

The PMP certification requires applicants to have at least 3 years of experience leading projects and 35 contact hours of project management education. The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within four hours. Applicants must also agree to adhere to the PMI Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct.

To get the PMP certification, applicants must first apply online via the PMI website or through an approved third-party vendor. Once accepted, applicants can register for the exam and pay the examination fee, which varies depending on whether you are a member or non-member of PMI. The current cost for non-members is $555 USD while members pay $405 USD.

Once registered, applicants can schedule their exam at any Prometric testing center located around the world. After passing the exam, applicants will receive their official PMP certificate from PMI confirming their status as a certified project manager.

9. Association for Operations Management (APICS-CPIM)

The Association for Operations Management (APICS-CPIM) is a professional organization that provides certification programs, educational materials, and resources to individuals in the operations management field. The APICS-CPIM certification program is designed to help individuals gain the knowledge and skills necessary to become successful operations managers.

The APICS-CPIM certification program consists of two parts: the Basics of Supply Chain Management (BSCM) and the Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM). To earn the CPIM designation, you must pass both exams. The BSCM exam covers topics such as supply chain strategy, inventory management, purchasing, operations planning and control, quality assurance, and logistics. The CPIM exam focuses on production activity control, master scheduling, material requirements planning, forecasting and capacity planning, supplier relationship management, total quality management, performance measurements and analysis.

It typically takes six months to one year to prepare for the exams. You can study on your own or take an approved APICS-CPIM course at a college or university. There are also online courses available through APICS that provide self-paced learning options for those who prefer to study independently.

The cost of taking the exams varies depending on where you take them. The cost of taking each exam is $250 USD plus any applicable taxes or fees. If you take an approved course from an accredited institution or through APICS’ online platform, there may be additional costs associated with registration fees or other materials needed for the course.

To register for either exam you must fill out an application form and submit it along with proof of payment to APICS headquarters in Chicago. Once your application has been processed and accepted by APICS headquarters you will receive a confirmation email with instructions on how to schedule your exam date at a nearby testing center.

10. American Society of Transportation and Logistics (AST&L)

The American Society of Transportation and Logistics (AST&L) is a professional organization dedicated to the advancement of the transportation, logistics, and supply chain management profession. AST&L provides educational resources, networking opportunities, and certification programs to its members.

Membership in AST&L is open to individuals who are employed in or have an interest in the transportation and logistics industry. To become a member, you must fill out an application form online or by mail. The application fee is $125 for individuals or $200 for organizations. Once your application has been approved, you will receive your membership card within two weeks.

AST&L offers several certification programs that allow members to demonstrate their knowledge and expertise in the field of transportation and logistics. These certifications include Certified Logistics Professional (CLP), Certified Logistics Associate (CLA), Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), and Certified Transportation Professional (CTP). Each certification requires applicants to pass an exam that covers a variety of topics related to the field of transportation and logistics. The cost for each exam varies depending on which level of certification you are seeking; however, most exams cost between $150-$300.

In addition to certifications, AST&L also offers educational resources such as webinars, conferences, workshops, seminars, online courses, and publications that can help members stay up-to-date on industry trends and best practices.

Overall, membership in AST&L provides access to valuable resources that can help professionals advance their careers in the field of transportation and logistics.

11. Institute of Business Forecasting & Planning (IBF).

The Institute of Business Forecasting & Planning (IBF) is a professional organization that provides training and certification in the field of business forecasting and planning. The IBF is dedicated to helping organizations improve their ability to forecast and plan for the future.

IBF offers two levels of certification: Certified Business Forecaster (CBF) and Certified Professional Forecaster (CPF). To become certified, individuals must complete an online course and pass an exam. The course typically takes between 8-10 hours to complete, depending on the individual's learning style. After passing the exam, individuals will receive their CBF or CPF certification.

The cost for IBF certification varies depending on the level of certification desired. For the CBF certification, it costs $395 USD; for the CPF certification, it costs $595 USD. Both certifications include access to exclusive resources such as webinars, articles, and other materials related to forecasting and planning.

In addition to providing certifications, IBF also offers workshops and conferences throughout the year that focus on various topics related to forecasting and planning. These events provide a great opportunity for professionals to network with other experts in the field, learn about new trends in forecasting and planning, and gain valuable insights from industry leaders.

Do You Really Need a Shipping Manager Certificate?

Shipping managers are responsible for the efficient transportation of goods from one location to another. They must possess a comprehensive understanding of shipping procedures, regulations, and laws. As such, many employers require potential shipping managers to hold a Shipping Manager Certificate.

The answer to whether or not you need a Shipping Manager Certificate depends on your individual situation and the requirements of your prospective employer. If the company does not require a certificate, then having one may give you an advantage over other applicants when applying for the position. A certificate demonstrates that you have taken the time to gain knowledge and experience in this field, which can help you stand out as a candidate.

On the other hand, if the employer does require a Shipping Manager Certificate, then it is essential that you obtain one before applying for any positions in this profession. Most certificates are obtained through specialized courses or workshops that teach students how to manage different aspects of shipping operations such as budgeting, scheduling, and customer service. Additionally, some employers may ask that you obtain additional certifications depending on their specific needs.

Overall, whether or not you need a Shipping Manager Certificate depends on your individual circumstances and those of the employer. However, it is important to consider obtaining one if it will give you an advantage in your job search or if it is required by potential employers. Obtaining a Shipping Manager Certificate can open up many opportunities in this field and make it easier for employers to recognize your qualifications as an experienced professional in this area of expertise.

Related: Shipping Manager Resume Examples

FAQs About Shipping Manager Certifications

Q1. What is a Shipping Manager Certification?

A1. A Shipping Manager Certification is a professional certification that demonstrates an individual's knowledge and expertise in managing the shipping process for both domestic and international shipments. It is designed to help individuals develop the skills needed to successfully oversee all aspects of the shipping process, from selecting carriers to tracking shipments and ensuring timely delivery.

Q2. How do I become certified as a Shipping Manager?

A2. To become certified as a Shipping Manager, you must pass an exam administered by an accredited organization such as the International Association of Logistics Management (IALM). The exam covers topics such as understanding regulations, managing costs, selecting carriers, developing strategies for successful deliveries, and more.

Q3. What are the benefits of having a Shipping Manager Certification?

A3. Having a Shipping Manager Certification can provide several benefits, including: gaining recognition among employers; increasing job opportunities; improving job performance; and providing access to specialized training courses and resources related to shipping management.

Q4. How long does it take to get certified as a Shipping Manager?

A4. Generally speaking, it takes about two months to complete all of the requirements for becoming certified as a Shipping Manager, including passing the exam and completing any required training courses or other prerequisites set by the certifying organization.

Q5. Is there ongoing education required after obtaining my certification?

A5. Yes - most certifying organizations require that you maintain your certification status through continuing education activities such as attending conferences or taking additional courses related to shipping management every few years in order to keep your certification current.