Every day, Sheila Kester handles questions from HR professionals about WorldatWork’s specialty designations of Certified Sales Compensation Professional (CSCP) and Certified Executive Compensation Professional (CECP). Kester, who has been with WorldatWork for 12 years, is one of the five customer advisers who could be at the other end of the line when you call, email or live chat. Workspan sat down with Kester to hear the most frequently asked questions she receives about these certifications, and her answers.
Q: How do I earn the CSCP or CECP certification?
A: Both are specialty certifications based on your knowledge of and experience in the field. They really are for those who work in sales compensation or executive compensation and who do the plan design, administration and evaluation. We highly recommend two to three years of experience in the field.
There are no prerequisites, so you don’t need a certification such as the Certified Compensation Professional (CCP) or Global Remuneration Professional (GRP) first. One thing people don’t realize is that the specialty certifications are not curriculum-based, so they’re not like our CCP and GRP. No single course or product is going to prepare you for the one comprehensive exam, because the exam is based on your knowledge.
Q: What, then, is the body of knowledge?
A: On WorldatWork’s new website, under "Certification," you can find dedicated information pages that address the body of knowledge and the strategic areas covered on the exam, including strategic management, plan design, administration and evaluation.
It’s very helpful to read through that because it’s going to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses. If you need to brush up on a certain area, we provide a link to our supplemental educational resources for that area.
Q: How do I prepare for the exam?
A: Whether you take practice exams first or use the supplemental resources first is a personal preference. We have three different practice exams, each with different questions. If you successfully complete a practice exam, it doesn’t say you’re going to ace the real exam. A practice exam is to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses, where your knowledge and skills are.
The "Supplemental Resources" link takes you to everything we have on the field, from articles to webinars to certification courses to skill-building courses to publications. You choose what courses to take or resources to touch on.
Once you’re ready, you purchase the exam and have 120 days to complete it at a Pearson Vue testing center. You can retake the exam, but it’s important to know that there is a fee each time you take the test.