Are you ready for the CIP?

By Jesse Wilkins posted 02-10-2012 11:03


One of the challenges associated with introducing a new certification is helping people to prepare for the exam. This is especially true with the Certified Information Professional exam because of the breadth of its coverage. There is also a bit of "chicken and egg" in the sense that training companies don't want to develop training materials until there is a market - and most people want training materials to review before taking the exam (and hence developing the market).

And finally, it's not as simple as developing and delivering training ourselves - this is definitely NOT a best practice when it comes to formal certifications. 

AIIM is taking a couple of different approaches to this challenge. First, over the last several months we worked with a contractor, Holly Group, to develop a series of free training videos covering every domain, sub-domain, and knowledge area covered on the exam. These videos are hosted through YouTube and are available through the AIIM site at We can also make available the list of videos, so organizations can embed them in their own sites, or even make the actual videos themselves available for organizations to serve up to their employees or customers. 

Next, we have taken the 100+ PowerPoint decks used to create the videos, including speaker notes on each slide, and combined them into 6 presentations, one for each major domain of the exam. These, too, are freely available to AIIM Professional members, AIIM Trade and Advisory Trade members, and training partners.

For AIIM chapters, and chapters of other associations, we have developed a training toolkit that has a number of resources and ways to deliver CIP-related content, from "what is the CIP and how was it developed?" to the detailed training materials above. Chapters can cover the entire exam over the course of a chapter year, i.e. "chapter year  in a box", or could elect to focus in more detail on the areas that might not be as well-known by chapter members such as Enterprise Search or Information Workplace. 

And finally, we are actively working with a number of prospective training partners to develop and deliver their own content. There is no cost to do this, and AIIM gets no licensing or other fees from the agreement. And those training partners do NOT get access to the exam itself. Instead the benefit of becoming a training partner is that AIIM will review their content for exam coverage, and upon approval of the content and execution of the partner agreement AIIM will give them a partner logo, list their events on the AIIM website, and otherwise assist them with marketing their CIP preparation workshops. In this way candidates have access to high-quality and independent training materials, AIIM ensures the consistency of those materials and the integrity of the exam, and training partners have a great way to drive both revenue and visibility in the broader information management community. For details about what the training partner program involves, please feel free to contact me directly at

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