Friday, June 15, 2012

Congratulations to those who passed the CIPM Examinations!

The CFA Institute announced earlier this week that 46% of those who sat for the CIPM's Expert exam passed. Congratulations to these 98 performance measurement professionals who successfully demonstrated their expertise in the various areas of investment performance measurement. While the exams themselves are not sufficient to permit the use of the "CIPM" designation, it is a major step towards it.

Some background: CIPM stands for Certificate in Investment Performance Measurement. The Performance Measurement Forum initiated the idea several years ago. We created a "blue ribbon committee," and began working on the exam. About six months into the process, we learned that the CFA Institute had decided to offer a similar program, and so rather than compete, we turned our work product over to them, and have supported the program ever since. Todd Jankowski, CFA oversees the program, and he and his team work hard to promote and grow the certification. We believe that everyone in performance measurement should strongly consider pursuing the designation, to (a) demonstrate their own expertise and (b) help promote our segment of the industry.

I'll confess that I was quite nervous when I took the exam. My colleague, John Simpson, and I were among the first to attempt it. We were promoting and teaching prep courses for it, even though we had yet to see what the exam itself looked like (we only had the study materials provided by the CFA Institute). Had either of us failed, we would not have been very happy (to be honest, I think we would have been very embarrassed, given our presence and involvement in the industry). Fortunately, we succeeded.

A lot of senior folks in performance measurement have, I believe, hesitated to take the exam because they, too, would be embarrassed if they failed; but they really shouldn't be concerned. I think most folks who have been in performance for many years meet with success, though there are those who don't succeed, but this is usually because their work makes it difficult to devote the necessary time to properly prepare, or perhaps they underestimate the degree of difficulty of the exam itself.

The entire program is designed to be rigorous; if it was easy, it wouldn't mean anything, right? Granted today many of those who take the exam are more junior, thus (I believe) the reason for the lower pass rate.

To those who were not successful this time, I hope you'll make another attempt at it. Please don't give up.

The Spaulding Group offers both preparatory training courses and flash cards to help, so consider this.

I should also acknowledge those who successfully passed the Principles level; this too, is a great achievement. But, if you thought THIS exam was hard, just wait!

Again, to those who passed: CONGRATULATIONS!!!


  1. i am appearing the principal level exam this month and i am very nervous. I would really appreicate if any one could provide me some tips to increase chances of clearing it.

    Thanks in advance.


  2. Raj, good luck! We offer "flash cards" which many find helpful (email Chris Spaulding ( to learn more. We also offer a training course, which has proven extremely helpful for those preparing; Chris can provide details on this, too. And, John Simpson often offers a webinar to review questions in advance of the exams; again, Chris can provide details. Good luck!


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