CRM Exam Preparation Assistance

Interested in becoming a CRM and looking for support? Members of the ARMA NJ chapter have oppurtunities for assistance to guide them through the process from applying for candidacy to preparing for the exams.

  • Study groups with other candidates and CRM records professionals

  • CRM Mentors to help support your studies

  • An extensive library of books and resources available to borrow at no cost.

  • Annual preparation workshops covering all exam sections.

If you would like to learn more please contact Lucy Rieger at Director1@armannj.org.

CRM Certification

The primary mission of the ICRM is to develop and administer the professional certification of Records and Information Managers including the relevant examinations and certification maintenance program.  The ICRM serves as the official certifying body for both ARMA International and the Nuclear Information and Records Management Association (NIRMA).  Organizations that can write and administer a Part 7 exam that tests for industry-specific Records and Information Management (RIM) knowledge not identified on any of the current CRM examinations, may qualify to have a Special Designation in records management that individuals in the relevant profession can pursue once they have obtained their initial CRM certification.

ICRM Logo

National and global industry surveys continue to show a strong correlation and value proposition for those Records and Information Management (RIM) professionals that achieve the CRM designation.  The candidate’s belief that the credential will provide for enhanced professionalism and personal growth is a significant factor in the overall decision to become a CRM.  The RIM knowledge gained through the certification examination preparation process, and elevation of confidence that is achieved as a result of mastering related competencies, is directly related to the CRM’s ability to garner higher-level RIM positions with commensurate salaries.

 Visit the ICRM Website at www.ICRM.org for more information and to find the application. 

CRM Related Articles


CRM Certification: What's it Worth?

CRM Certification: What's it Worth?
By Sofia Empel, CRM

Most CRMs identify the benefits of their credential as validation of knowledge; improved marketability; outstanding reputation and credibility; and increased confidence. But, what's CRM certification really worth?

The Certified Records Manager (CRM) credential refers to a records and information management (RIM) industry certification that demonstrates RIM knowledge and a minimum level of RIM experience. It is often used as a prerequisite to hiring and is based on industry assessments developed by the Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM).

The value of the CRM designation can be measured in both qualitative and quantitative terms. Qualitative value refers to how much quality (excellence) increases as a result of the CRM, while quantitative value indicates monetary worth. To determine the real worth of the CRM certification, both values should be considered.

Many potential applicants take a narrow view of the CRM. Although they often associate the value of the CRM with benefits associated with the individual being certified, they rarely consider how the designation impacts other stakeholders. Not only does the CRM provide value to the individual, but it also adds value for employers, ICRM, and the public as well. Some qualitative values for different types of RIM stakeholders are as follows:

  Certified Records Manager (CRM)

  • Provides a sense of personal accomplishment
  • Increases and/or validates RIM knowledge
  • Increases career advancement and/or earnings
  • Enhances professional reputation and credibility
  • Demonstrates commitment to RIM practice
  • Supports continued professional development
  • Provides recognition by a third party

Employers

  • Increases the organization's RIM competence
  • Provides organizational, industry, and government compliance
  • Demonstrates commitment to RIM quality and competence
  • Improves employee and customer satisfaction through RIM services
  • Increases security and privacy of information
  • Provides employees with ongoing professional development
  • Increases confidence in RIM employee's abilities
  • Assists in employment decisions

 Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM)

  • Helps standardize RIM practice
  • Advances RIM as a discipline
  • Provides means to establish and enforce an ethical code
  • Provides self-regulation of RIM
  • Increases cooperation between ARMA and ICRM

 Public

  • Helps identify qualified RIM individuals
  • Increases RIM confidence in organizations employing CRMs
  • Provides a means of filing ethical complaints through the ICRM

All of the qualitative factors listed above add value to the CRM designation. Although these factors cannot always be measured easily, they nonetheless add value to the CRM certification.
 

Quantifying the monetary worth of the CRM designation is not easy. For example, putting a dollar amount on career advancement, increase in responsibilities, and personal growth is difficult. According to a 2011 Salary Guide from Robert Half International, individuals with certifications can earn a starting salary up to 10 percent above the market average. Generally, you can assume this increase holds true for entry level CRMs as well.

Furthermore, today's RIM job announcements increasingly specify "CRM required" or "CRM preferred". According to a recent ICRM survey, the demand for CRMs as compared to non-CRMs has increased 31%. In fact, the ICRM established a strategic initiative to ensure the number of CRMs keeps pace with the high demand for CRMs by employers. The economic principle of "supply and demand" helps determine the certification's value as well.

So, what's CRM certification worth? Minimally, ten percent to an entry level RIM professional, but if you add qualitative value-much, much more.

Finally, if you are not familiar with CRM certification and want to learn more, here is the link to the ICRM Handbookhttp://www.icrm.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/ICRM-Handbook-01-12.pdf

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Why Be a CRM? How to Begin

Lucy Rieger, Director, CRM 

Why should you become a CRM? An Information Management professional may have various credentials, but the most important one is Certified Records Manager. Current job ads reflect a growing trend that the CRM is preferred, and in more and more instances, CRM is required. The ICRM claims it cannot keep up with the demands for CRMs.

 How do you become certified?  You apply to the Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM) and must be accepted and approved to take a 6 part certification test.  The requirements for application have changed, offering new and varied opportunities for acceptance.  These requirements are a combination of education and work experience.  Carefully reading the specifications reveals that there are many variations and combinations that can fulfill application requirements.  These are less stringent than they were previously, and well worth reviewing.   

One of the biggest revisions for candidacy is the education requirement.  The minimum acceptable education is graduation from high school (completion of 12 grades) or equivalent (e.g. GED Certificate). Steve Golden, CRM, Chair of the ICRM Board of Regents, commenting on the application changes last August stated "This is the industry's most rigorous series of exams, culminating in the credential that has been respected for the last 36 years. We're pleased to make the application process more approachable for potential Candidates, without the need for them to jump through administrative hurdles of proving areas of expertise. The exams prove an applicant's professional work experience quite adequately."

Once accepted you become a CRM Candidate and are eligible to take Parts 1 to 5 of the ICRM exam. Exams are given four times a year during the first weeks of February, May, August and November. You make take up to five years to complete the exams. You may repeat taking the exams as many times as it takes to pass. However, you must pass Parts 1 to 5 before you can take Part 6. 

How do you get started?  Apply! Then start studying. You can take CRM Workshops at the ARMA annual conference in Chicago. Or, wait for the upcoming NNJARMA local workshops, soon to be announced. Or, try one of the other local chapters. The most important thing is to begin. Here's how: go to the ICRM website at www.ICRM.org and read about Applying for the Examination. Print out the Application Form. That's Part 1 of Becoming a CRM done! Need help filling out the form? Contact us at NNJARMA and we will assist you in step 2, Becoming a CRM Becoming a CRM Candidate.  

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Becoming a CRM: A Beginners Guide

Everything Need to Know About CRM.

New Jersey siblings Lucy Rieger, MLS, CRM, Sofia Empel, MLIS, CRM, CDIA+ and Henry Gozdz, MLS, CRM (now this is a family who takes good records management practices seriously!) - presented a panel discussion in February 2012 about everything members need to know to be successful in becoming a Certified Records Manager (CRM).

 This included:

  • Why did they each choose to become a CRM
  • What steps each took to get certified
  • How did they prepare for the examination
  • What resources did they use
  • Who did they turn to for help


Click here to access the presentation.


Sofia Empel, MLIS, CRM, CDIA+

Ms. Empel is the President of Records Update, a women-WBE certified company, which provides professional consulting, as well as information and records management support services to corporations, law firms, universities, not-for-profits, and government organizations in New York, New Jersey, southern Connecticut, and eastern Pennsylvania. Ms. Empel has 32 years of experience in the information management profession. She is a Certified Records Manager (CRM), Certified Document Imaging Architech (CDIA+) and provisionally Certified Archivist (CA). She is also a Ph.D. candidate in Information Studies at Long Island University and is expected to complete her dissertation in a records management related topic by May 2011.   Ms. Empel is a member of ARMA International; Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM); American Society for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T); Society of American Archivists (SAA); Law Library Association of Greater New York (LLAGNY); American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA); and Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).

Lucy Rieger, MLS, CRM

Ms. Rieger is President of Library Update, a women-owned WBE certified company, which provides consulting and support services to corporations, law firms, accounting firms, universities, government agencies, and not-for-profit organizations that need to manage their information.  She. Rieger earned her Masters in Library Science (MLS) from Rutgers University and is a certified records manager (CRM). She served as the President of the New Jersey Law Librarians Association and is currently Vice President of Membership for ARMA's Northern New Jersey Chapter.  Ms. Rieger is also a member of ARMA International; Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM); American Association of Law Librarians (AALL); Special Libraries Association (SLA); and New Jersey Law Librarians Association (NJLLA), President 2007-2008.

Henry Gozdz, MLS, CRM,

Henry Gozdz, CRM,  has a BS in Business Administration from Ramapo College of New Jersey and an  MLS from Rutgers University. He has been employed by the NJ Judiciary as Law Librarian since 2000 and has served as the Records Coordinator for the Bergen Vicinage since 2007.  He is currently the Chair of the Statewide Records Coordinator Committee.

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