Education. Knowledge. Motivation.
Sitting for a professional society’s reliability certification is a common goal among engineers in our field. Is there a career benefit? I’m not sure the certification provides the benefit. I think it is the work toward certification and the application of the required knowledge that provides the benefit.
“Why Not the CMRP?”
Here’s a recent question that I received:
I’m planning to get the CRL and I got the training material for it. One of my coworkers asked me “why not the CMRP?” I didn’t have a good answer. But I said because I have the training material lol
What’s your take on the subject? And what are the factors to consider career-wise?
Feel free to share the question and topic for discussion with anyone that might shed some light on the subject.
The CRL, CRMP, or CRE are certifications that you have mastered a defined body of knowledge as of a specific day and I believe all expect an ongoing professional development to maintain the certification.
The certifications have no legal bearing and while a few employers may request or expect such certifications for employees, it is just part of professional development and a marker of knowledge, not application of that knowledge.
A Chartered Engineer or Professional Engineer license is a legal license from some state or government body that legally holds the engineer accountable for their work. The certifications in reliability do not.
Professional society sponsored certifications expect you to follow a code of ethics, which if great, and expect continuing professional education and participation with our professional community. All good.
You don’t need a certification to continue to learn and grow as a professional. It is nice marker though that helps you and others note the milestone of the certification. It may or may not look good on your resume depending on the value placed on such certifications by hiring managers.
What is important and a big part of working to achieve a certification or license is how well you apply the knowledge to solve problems, improve processes, and in general get things done. Again you don’t need a certificate to create value for your organization and customers, yet the achievement of a certification milestone often requires learning just a bit more than you would have done, which is good. It requires you to focus and achieve a goal, which is good.
Which is better though is saving your company money by improving the design of a maintenance program, or implementing a meaningful diagnostic method, etc.
If you want to get the CRL, go for it. If the CMRP is useful for you, go for it. If these certifications have value or perceived value in your industry – that may open a few doors for you. Yet, in the long run, it is people that apply the knowledge well that do well. No list of certifications alone will help your career.
There have been salary surveys that suggest those with a certification earn more, yet I don’t think the certification actually changes your earning potential – it is the people that take their work seriously, and work to improve their ability through professional development, also happen to sit for certifications from professional societies… do good work, continue to learn, be ethical in all your work, you will earn more. Certifications along the way are great if you use them to learn and continue to learn.
At least that is my opinion on the role certifications play in our careers and industries.
Where do you See the Benefit?
Why did you get a certificate? And what benefit did you realize? Pride, knowledge, promotions, opportunities, or simply the confidence to solve problems and do good work?
Do you agree with me that the professional society certifications do provide the motivation and encouragement for you to continue to learn and participate in our community? Or would you do so anyway?
What is your opinion around the value of the CRL, CMRP, or CRE?
Leave your thought in the comment section below, would love to hear from you on this topic.
Being certified have lots of benifits. First, it always adds to your knowledge and acccelerates the learning process as you are tested in many areas.
Secondly, from the employer view, it is a formal way to verify you have the minimum required knoweldge in accordance with international standards to perform certain tasks they way you should. So it is an assurance sort of thing.
I do agree certificates are just a waste of papers if there is no added value to the organization.
Bob Latino says
Thanks Fred. Can you please reference the professional societies that are associated with these certifications? Does any one certification have any more clout over the other, if so, why? If you had the links available it may help people do their own due diligence and make up their own minds. This was very helpful, thanks.
CRL – The Association of Asset Management Professionals (AMP)
CMRP – Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals (SMRP)
CRE – American Society of Quality (ASQ)
TARAPADA PYNE says
The excellent narration on the usefulness of Certifications. Like it
Very interesting article Fred. I agree, your value is on what you can do and what you have done. I have none of the above and am looking to benchmark my skills against best in class industry practices and standards. I feel that this is the only way to know you are at the top tier of your field.
Fred Schenkelberg says
Hi Sak thanks for the note and I like your thought on benchmarking – at the moment I’m not sure the certifications available offer best in class skills – my expereince is they set a rather low bar and one based on basic skills from many years ago. cheers, Fred