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May 2010 Administration Report: UPPCC Releases Key Performance Data

July 28, 2010 -The Certified Public Purchasing Officer (CPPO) and Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) are globally recognized credentials offered exclusively by the Universal Public Purchasing Certification Council (UPPCC). The certification programs systematically raise the level of professionalism within the public procurement profession by offering recognition to those individuals who meet an established standard of competency for public procurement demonstrated through a rigorous application process and superior examination performance.

In July, the UPPCC announced that 207 individuals successfully completed the May 2010 certification exams, including 144 who earned the CPPB certification and 63 who earned the CPPO. To date, 8,357 CPPB and 1,891 CPPO certifications have been awarded by the UPPCC.

Obtaining either UPPCC certification requires the candidate to demonstrate, through an application process, that they meet specific requisites, which includes education, procurement related coursework/training and public purchasing employment experience. A comprehensive written examination (specific to each certification) is required to confirm the candidate's mastery of a variety of public procurement concepts found in the UPPCC Body of Knowledge.

Today, the UPPCC released key performance data from the May 2010 examinations:

Overall Scoring/Passing Rates
The UPPCC reports that 75% of the 84 total candidates who tested for the CPPO passed while 63% of the 227 candidates who tested for the CPPB passed. Mean passing scores for CPPB candidates were 27 points higher than for CPPO.

Testing Time
The total testing time permitted for both examinations is 3.5 hours. This includes time for candidates to comment on individual test questions. This equates to a total of 210 minutes for 175 questions or on average 1 minute and 23 seconds for each test question.

The UPPCC reported that for CPPO, the average completion time was 2.67 hours with a range from 3.5 hours maximum to 1.50 hours minimum. For the CPPB, the average completion time was 2.58 hours with a range from 3.5 hours maximum to 1.05 hours minimum.

Exam Content & Candidate Preparation
Content for both the CPPO and CPPB examinations are dictated by the 2008 UPPCC Body of Knowledge (BOK). A total of 10 domain areas comprise the BOK and are as follows:

  1. Administration Aspects of Purchasing

  2. Procurement Requests

  3. Solicitation and Evaluation of Bids/Proposals

  4. Supplier Analysis

  5. Negotiation Process

  6. Contract Award and Administration

  7. External/Internal Relationships

  8. Materiels Management

  9. Human Resources/Personnel

  10. Forecasting and Strategies

The UPPCC reports that for the CPPO, candidates performed the best in Domain 8: Materiels Management and performed the poorest in Domain 5: Negotiation Process and Domain 7: External/Internal Relationships.  Conversely for CPPB candidates, the strongest performance area was Domain 9: Human Resources/Personnel while performing the poorest in Domain 2: Procurement Requests (see Table 1).

UPPCC reports that a high percentage of candidates indicated, via a post examination survey, spending between one and three months preparing for their respective examinations (see Table 2).

The organization also reports that in reviewing candidates as a whole, those who indicated spending between one and six months preparing experienced the highest rates of passing compared to other timeframes of preparation; however, in evaluating CPPO candidate performance, preparation times of less than one month, as indicated by high passing rates, appeared to be the optimal timeframe (see Graph 1).

Passing Rates and Public Entity Types
UPPCC reports that when comparing passing rates for both examinations with various entity types; K-12 experienced the highest rates of passing at 83% followed by Counties at 73% (see Graph 2).

Testing for both credentials is offered via a network of nearly 400 professional testing centers twice annually in May and October. The UPPCC will continue to accept applications for the October 18-30, 2010 testing window through the late deadline of August 2, 2010 with a $50 late fee.

The Universal Public Purchasing Certification Council (UPPCC) is an independent entity formed to govern and administer the Certified Public Purchasing Officer (CPPO) and Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) certification programs. The CPPO and CPPB programs are highly regarded and respected among procurement professionals and employers involved in the public sector. To date, the UPPCC has certified well over 10,000 professionals primarily within the US and Canada as well as in other nations around the globe.