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C.P.M. Exam Specifications - General Format For C.P.M. Examination


Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.) Examination Specifications
General Format For C.P.M. Examination

Note: C.P.M. candidates take all four modules of the exam

Note: Modules 1 and 2 of the C.P.M. exam may be substituted for modules 1 and 2 of the new A.P.P. exam and vice versa


Section Task Description
A. Identifying Requirements (23 questions) 101 Establish procurement plans and make decisions necessary to purchase products or services in congruence with organizational objectives and sourcing strategies. (6 questions)
102 Review purchase requisitions in accordance with organizational requirements and/or budgetary constraints. (3 questions)
103 Determine appropriate methods of procurement.(6 questions)
104 Perform cost/benefit analyses on planned acquisitions. (5 questions)
105 Review supplier samples and/or demonstrations with the buying organization management and/or user departments.(3 questions)
B. Preparation of Solicitations (22 questions) 106 Develop/review specifications, statements of work, performance terms, and/or acceptance criteria. (7 questions)
  107 Locate and select potential sources of materials or services. (6 questions)
108 Prepare and solicit competitive bids, quotations, and proposals with pertinent specifications, terms, and conditions. (6 questions)
109 Manage and develop lists of recommended sources.(3 questions)
C. Supplier Analysis
(19 questions)
110 Evaluate competitive offerings to determine the overall best offer for a product/service.(8 questions)
111 Conduct supplier visits/evaluations to determine suitability. (6 questions)
112 Measure supplier performance using rating systems and/or predetermined standards.(5 questions)
D. Contract Execution,
113 Prepare and/or issue contracts/purchase orders.(4 questions)
114 Obtain legal review and approval of a contract when required. (5 questions)
(26 questions) 115 Administer contracts/purchase orders from award to completion. (3 questions)
116 Expedite deliveries and conduct follow-up procedures when necessary.(2 questions)
117 Resolve contract/purchase order differences with suppliers. (4 questions)
118 Resolve payment problems with suppliers and user departments.(2 questions)
119 Review and revise purchasing practices to ensure their conformance with established laws, policies, and ethical principles.(4 questions)
120 Manage files of agreements, equipment records, and/or specifications.(2 questions)


Section Task Description
A. Negotiations (13 questions) 201 Prepare for and develop strategies and tactics for negotiations. (7 questions)
  202 Conduct negotiations with potential and/or current suppliers to obtain maximum value. (6 questions)
B. Information Technology
(16 questions)
203 Develop/utilize a computerized purchasing system (e.g., online buying, EDI, Web-based electronic commerce).(6 questions)
  204 Develop/implement/maintain a database of specifications, suppliers, products, and/or services.(5 questions)
205 Develop/utilize a computerized inventory and/or capital equipment tracking system.(5 questions)
C. Quality Issues
(12 questions)
206 Resolve quality problems with suppliers and user departments.(6 questions)
207 Develop measurements for quality improvement and target setting (e.g., "best in class" benchmarks). (6 questions)
D. Internal Relationships
(22 questions)
208 Develop/manage/evaluate relationships with other internal departments.(6 questions)
  209 Participate in cross-functional and/or multifunctional teams (e.g., project management, process improvement).(6 questions)
210 Recommend/implement changes to the organization's purchasing, supply management, and material usage policies as needed. (5 questions)
211 Disseminate information and provide training related to purchasing and supply management policies and procedures.(5 questions)
E. External Relationships
(27 questions)
212 Develop/manage effective relationships with suppliers, utilizing such techniques as supplier partnerships, strategic alliances, supply chain management, and supplier training programs.(7 questions)
213 Review product availability and/or pricing information with suppliers.(6 questions)
214 Conduct interviews with current and prospective supplier sales personnel.(3 questions)
215 Coordinate/review/respond to supplier inquiries, protests, and appeals.(3 questions)
216 Develop/implement a small business/disadvantaged supplier development program.(5 questions)
217 Represent the buying organization in meetings with corporations, government agencies, professional associations, media, and other organizations.(3 questions)

(95 questions)

Section Task Description
A. Sourcing Analysis
(17 questions)
301 Conduct decisions to "make or buy," privatize, or outsource products or services.(7 questions)
302 Conduct decisions to lease or buy equipment.(5 questions)
303 Develop financing and leveraging strategies for purchases.(5 questions)
B. Supply and Inventory Management 304 Organize, control, and minimize the storage of materials.(6 questions)
(19 questions) 305 Meet with appropriate departments to discuss current material inventories, and establish restock levels or just-in-time strategies.(6 questions)
306 Determine sources of and reconcile inventory discrepancies.(3 questions)
307 Handle obsolete equipment/materials, surplus equipment/materials, and scrap.(4 questions)
C. Value Enhancing Methods
(26 questions)
308 Develop/implement a standardization program.(6 questions)
  309 Develop/implement a process improvement program.(7 questions)
310 Develop a cost reduction, cost avoidance, cost containment program (e.g., value analysis, consolidation of orders/suppliers, leadtime reduction, activity-based costing).(7 questions)
311 Coordinate the introduction of new and modified products and services with appropriate departments.(6 questions)
D. Forecasting and Strategies
(28 questions)
312 Plan purchasing, sourcing, and supply strategies based on forecasted data. (6 questions)
313 Develop supply plans and strategies based on forecasts of future demand.(6 questions)
314 Provide forecasted data of future organization buying requirements to suppliers. (5 questions)
315 Develop and maintain market awareness through merchandise shows, trade periodicals, and other resources to secure new product and pricing information.(5 questions)
316 Provide data on current and future market conditions to management, sales management, and/or user departments.(6 questions)

MODULE 4: MANAGEMENT (120 questions)

Section Task Description
A. Management and
401 Develop strategic plans and objectives (short and long-term).(11 questions)
(61 questions) 402 Develop goals and objectives of purchasing and supply department aligned to organizational goals. (11 questions)
403 Plan/develop/provide operating policies, guidelines, and procedures.(9 questions)
404 Prepare periodic reports of department activities for senior management and other areas of the organization. (7 questions)
405 Analyze and resolve issues raised in purchasing and supply audit reports.(5 questions)
406 Develop/utilize criteria for evaluating purchasing and supply department performance.(8 questions)
407 Prepare and/or administer a purchasing department/supply management budget.(7 questions)
408 Design, modify, and/or manage operational forms (paper and/or electronic).(3 questions)
B. Human Resources Management 409 Supervise and lead purchasing/supply staff.(11 questions)
(49 questions) 410 Hire, promote, and/or dismiss purchasing/supply personnel. (8 questions)
411 Evaluate purchasing/supply staff performance. (8 questions)
412 Conduct/authorize job training for the development of the professional competence of the staff. (9 questions)
413 Resolve employee performance problems. (7 questions)
414 Implement programs to prevent and respond to discrimination or harassment.(6 questions)

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