operations certifications

10 Operations Certifications to Grow Your Career in 2024 

Are you looking to advance your career in operations management?

As we approach 2024, employers are looking for skilled professionals to handle the demands of operations management.

Business Operations is the backbone of any organization, whether helping create a high-level strategy or digging deep to find the root cause of a problem impacting your business—operations teams do it all.

Given the breadth of operational roles—how does one build expertise and credibility in this space?

Operations certifications act like a stamp of approval, proving you have the chops and the expertise to manage multiple projects, run things smoothly, and tackle risks effectively.

Companies find hiring or promoting you easier when they see you’ve got the skills they need and are on top of the latest industry practices.

For you, it’s not just a stamp of approval. It’s a chance to refine skills in process optimization, supply chain management, project management, quality control, and more. These certifications boost your credibility, set you apart from peers, and connect you with industry professionals.

Rather than simply expanding job opportunities, these certifications fuel your career growth. If you’re eager for that advancement, we’ve compiled a list of ten operations certifications to help you find the perfect fit for your goals. 

What are Operations Manager Certifications? 

Operations Manager certifications validate your skills in overseeing and improving processes for organizational efficiency and effectiveness. Offered by professional organizations, these certifications showcase your expertise in developing and implementing operational strategies.

These operations certifications cover topics such as supply chain management, project management, lean and Six Sigma, operations management software, and IT operations management. 

They allow you to highlight your expertise and are highly sought-after by employers for roles like operations managers, supply chain managers, project managers, and quality assurance managers.

Benefits of Getting an Operations Certification

Getting an operations certification brings numerous advantages if you aim to progress in management and related fields. Some are:

  • Skills validation: Operation manager certifications formally recognize operations management skills and expertise. It proves to employers and peers that you have the necessary business and team management knowledge and competencies 
  • Career advancement: Many employers prioritize certified professionals when making hiring and promotion decisions. An operations certification can enhance your resume, making you a more competitive candidate for leadership roles
  • Increased job opportunities: Operations certifications widen the range of job opportunities. They open doors to positions that specifically require or prefer candidates with recognized qualifications in operations management
  • Industry recognition: Operations certifications are often well-regarded within specific industries. Achieving certification demonstrates your commitment to staying current with industry best practices and standards
  • Professional development: Certification involves acquiring new knowledge and skills. This continuous learning contributes to your professional development, keeping you informed about the latest trends and advancements in operations management
  • Network expansion: Certification programs often provide opportunities to connect with other professionals in the field. Networking with certified individuals and industry experts can lead to valuable collaborations, mentorships, and career insights

10 Operations Certifications to Consider

Now that we understand the perks of pursuing operations certifications, here are the top-rated recommendations from experts:

1. Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM)

Apics
via Apics

Earn your Certification in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) through APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society). This reputable institution has been around since 1973. This certification helps you understand the basics of handling production and inventory tasks. 

Five courses cover essential areas like planning for demand, quality management, inventory management, production scheduling, etc. Once you finish all five online courses, you get certified.

The CPIM certification boosts your career options and makes it easier to work with your colleagues by improving your knowledge of supply chain concepts. This certification gives you an edge in a world of growing global competition.

 It also educates you on crafting and upholding standard operating procedures, made more straightforward with an operations management SOP template.

This certification benefits operations managers, production planners, inventory control specialists, supply chain specialists, and procurement specialists. Plus, you can finish this operations management course at your own pace, spanning from six months to two years, giving you the flexibility you need. 

  • Offered by: APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society)
  • Key topics: Supply chain overview, demand management, supply planning, and inventory management
  • Price: $1000-$3000, depending on whether you study independently or take classes with an ASCM-approved partner

2. Certified Operations Manager (COM)

AIBMC
via AIBMC

Certified Operations Manager or COM is administered by The American Institute for Business Management and Communication (AIBMC). It’s a professional-level operations certifications course suitable for all looking to advance their careers in operations management. 

Significantly increase your chances of commanding a higher salary with an industry-recognized certification like COM. 

The 3-hour exam has a booklet format carrying 100 MCQs (Multiple Choice Questions). To enroll for the certification course, you must have a bachelor’s degree and at least two or more years of experience in operations management. 

Offered by: The American Institute for Business Management and Communication (AIBMC)

Key topics: Operations strategies and planning, product demand management and forecasting, process improvement, program management, and international issues

Price: Not available online 

3. Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)

Apics
via APICS

This certification equips you with the essential skills and knowledge to manage complex supply chains. Whether you work as a logistics manager, procurement manager, inventory planner, logistics coordinator, or supply chain manager, this course boosts your career in your respective role. 

You have several options to prepare for the 150-question exam, which lasts 3.5 hours. Choose between a learning system, self-study, or instructor-led and supported options. 

The most budget-friendly choice is self-study, priced between $1000 and $1500. This option provides access to both digital and print study materials, including guides, practice questions, and flashcards.

Offered by:  APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society)

Key topics: Supply chains, demand management, forecasting, global supply chain networks, supply chain risk, and internal operations and inventory 

Price: $1000-$1500

4. Project Management Professional (PMP) certification 

PMI
via PMI

The Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, offered by the globally recognized Project Management Institute (PMI), gives you the knowledge and skills to lead and direct projects across various industries. This certification is ideal if you have at least 36 months of experience in leading and managing projects.

The certification covers five key areas: initiating, planning, executing, monitoring, controlling, and closing. A firm grip on all these aspects of project management leads to business process improvement. This certification is necessary if you aim for more senior positions and leadership roles! 

The exam duration is four hours with 200 MCQs. If you successfully clear the exam and get certified, you must renew it every three years. 

Offered by:  Project Management Institute (PMI)

Key topics: Initiating (13%), planning (24%), executing (42%), monitoring and controlling (16%), and closing (5%). Some additional vital topics include stakeholder management, team leadership, agile project management, and hybrid project management

Price: PMI members $405, non-PMI members $555

5. Certified Association Executive (CAE)

ASAE
via ASAE

Offered by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), the program is suitable for experienced operations managers. To pursue the program, you must have a bachelor’s degree or eight years of relevant experience, satisfying the ASAE code of conduct. 

Some job roles that typically take the certifications include CEOs, presidents, executive directors, and individuals seeking to advance their careers in association management. You can apply for the CAE exam twice yearly, in May and December. The exam lasts for four hours and consists of 200 multiple-choice questions.

Moreover, you need to renew the certification every three years. 

Offered by:  American Society of Association Executives (ASAE)

Key topics: Governance and leadership, marketing, public policy, operations management, and professional development

Price: $500 for members, $750 for non-members 

6. Certified Facility Manager (CFM)

IFMA
via IFMA

Running for the past 25 years, the CFM course offered by the IFMA (International Facility Management Association) covers over 11 core areas of facility management. It prepares you whether you aim to enhance communication, leadership, finance, risk management, or process optimization

This certificate program suits the already practicing facility professionals looking to be positioned as experts in the industry. The minimum experience eligibility is 3-5 years and a bachelor’s or master’s degree in facility management. 

Again, the price varies for the members ($595) and nonmembers ($880), and the IFMA provides many different resources to help you prepare. Additional charges apply if you are looking for corporate or group training. There’s no fixed duration, and you can take the exam when you are fully prepared. 

Offered by:  IFMA (International Facility Management Association) 

Key topics: Facility planning, quality management, leadership strategy, finance, project management, sustainability, and risk management 

Price: $595 for members and $880 for non-members 

7. Certified Purchasing Profession (CPP)

If material management is something you wish to excel in, then this certification course is for you. It introduces you to purchasing fundamentals, supply chain management, business acumen, and global procurement. 

Managed by the American Purchasing Society (APS), it’s an excellent way of excelling in your career. Enrolling in this certificate program requires at least two years of purchasing experience and supplier references.

As for the exam format, it’s a 150-minute online examination with 150 MCQs. Brush up on your case studies related to the subject matter!

Offered by: American Purchasing Society (APS)

Key topics: Purchasing fundamentals, contract administration, process analysis, supply chain management, cost analysis, negotiation, and supplier management

Price: Not available online

8. Six Sigma Green Belt 

The Six Sigma Green Belt certification is a valuable qualification for individuals with at least three years of work experience. It primarily focuses on helping operation managers better eliminate inefficiencies within processes.

Offered by the American Society for Quality (ASQ), this certification provides many materials and resources, such as study guides, question banks, and handbooks to support your preparation. 

One distinctive feature of the Sigma methodology examination is its open-book format, allowing you to bring reference materials. The exam spans over four hours and consists of 100 multiple-choice questions. 

Offered by: American Society for Quality (ASQ)

Key topics: Introduction to Sigma principles and methodologies, identifying the root causes and defects, developing and implementing solutions, and control measures 

Price: $438 for non-members and $338 for members (ASQ certification) 

9. PMI Risk Management Professional 

PMI
via PMI

Understanding and managing risks in a project is crucial, and the PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP) certification is here to help you develop this essential skill. It is offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI).

With this operations manager certification, you’ll learn how to identify and plan for risks, evaluate them, and respond effectively. Essentially, you become the risk specialist that your organization can rely on to handle unexpected issues.

Once you complete the certification, the knowledge and skills you gain will enable you to spot problems before they happen and reduce their impact. This operations certification suits project managers, risk managers, functional managers, and C-suite executives. 

To take the exam, you need a secondary degree, 36 months of experience in project management, and 40 hours of education in project risk management. 

Offered by: Project Management Institute (PMI)

Key topics: Risk strategy and project planning, stakeholder engagement, qualitative and quantitative risk analysis, and risk response planning

Price: $358 for members and $659 for non-members 

10 Certified in Logistics, transportation, and Distribution (CLTD)

APICS CLTD
via APICS

This operations certification offered by APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society) is perfect for learning effective logistics, transportation, and distribution strategies to boost efficiency. It covers global standards and essential skills, guiding you through everything from managing incoming materials to distributing products and handling returns.

To earn certification, you’ll take a 150-question exam lasting 3.5 hours. You need a score of 300 or higher to pass and demonstrate your understanding of the material. 

If you choose the ASCM bundled deal, priced at $1865, you’ll get both study materials and enrollment. For those opting for the self-study portal alone, the cost is $1035.

Whether for the comprehensive package or the more affordable self-study option, this course opens doors to global recognition and expertise in logistics and supply chain management.

Offered by: APICS (American Production and Inventory Control Society) 

Key topics: Logistics overview and strategy, order management, inventory management, reverse logistics, warehouse management, global logistics, and transportation 

Price: $1000-$2000, depending on your preference  

Enhance your operation management with ClickUp

Operations certifications will help you gain the proper knowledge and skills to handle situations effectively. And you have the list of the best operations management courses to make your choice! 

But it’s not just the certifications; you need the right software and tools to help you excel at your role to drive business efficiency.

When selecting operations management software, prioritize a scalable, all-in-one platform like ClickUp. This comprehensive solution consolidates all operations management aspects, from inventory to human resources, into a user-friendly platform. 

Setting Up Task Dependencies in ClickUp
Set a clear order of operations by adding “blocking” or “waiting on” dependencies between tasks and keep your team on track to know what to work on first

One of ClickUp’s key strengths is its ability to streamline administrative processes. Features such as project management, resource allocation, and team collaboration are integrated, reducing the need for jumping between different tools. This consolidation contributes to a more efficient and organized workflow.

ClickUp
Smoothen your workflow with ClickUp Project Manager for efficient task management and team collaboration with customizable views

With over 15 customizable views, you can tailor your operational management system to suit your needs. Whether it’s Gantt charts for project timelines or Kanban boards for task tracking, ClickUp provides the flexibility to adapt to different operational scenarios and improve business performance.

15+ views in ClickUp to customize your HR workflow to your needs
See the 15+ views in ClickUp to customize your workflow and streamline operations

Give ClickUp a try today and learn how to manage your operations smoothly! 

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