Kathleen Muretti and Ann Peshoff: UPPCC Certifications - 2020 Jobs Analysis

April 24, 2020 National Association of State Procurement Officials Season 1 Episode 4
Kathleen Muretti and Ann Peshoff: UPPCC Certifications - 2020 Jobs Analysis
Kathleen Muretti and Ann Peshoff: UPPCC Certifications - 2020 Jobs Analysis
Apr 24, 2020 Season 1 Episode 4
National Association of State Procurement Officials

We interview the current Chair of the Board of Directors (Kathleen Muretti) and the Executive Director (Ann Peshoff) of the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC).  We discuss the history of UPPCC, why receiving and maintaining certification is a vital part of the procurement profession, and the importance of the 2020 jobs analysis survey.

 Click here to take the UPPCC Job Analysis Survey


Show Notes Transcript

We interview the current Chair of the Board of Directors (Kathleen Muretti) and the Executive Director (Ann Peshoff) of the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC).  We discuss the history of UPPCC, why receiving and maintaining certification is a vital part of the procurement profession, and the importance of the 2020 jobs analysis survey.

 Click here to take the UPPCC Job Analysis Survey


Kevin Minor:   0:04
Greetings. How's it going? Episode four of the NASPO Pulse. This is the podcast where we're monitoring issues in state procurement. Got our finger on the pulse. I'm your host, Kevin Minor, and I am happy to be here. How are we doing, folks? Kobe 19. Still ravaging the entire globe. Email me [email protected], I want to hear your stories. We can share them with the rest of the community. Hey, let me ask you a question. When you go to the doctor, do you think it's important for him or her to be up to date on their certifications, their credentials? Yeah, me, too. Certifications are extremely important in any profession. That's why today we're talking with the current chair of the board of directors and the executive director of the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council. That's UPPCC. We're gonna talk about the functions of the council, the importance of certification and their 2020 job analysis efforts. Sit back, relax, and let us take the pulse.  

Kevin Minor:   1:20
Kathleen and Ann thank you for joining me today.

Kathleen Muretti:   1:23
Thanks, thanks to NASPO for providing us with the opportunity to talk about are you people received certifications.

Kevin Minor:   1:30
Absolutely. We really appreciate you giving us some of your time today. Kathleen Muretti is the current chair of the UPPCC Board of Directors and Ann Peshoff is the Executive Director for the UPPCCC Did I get that right Ann?  

Ann Peshoff:   1:50
Yes, Thanks.

Kevin Minor:   1:50
The UPPCC stands for Universal Public Procurement Certification Council. It was an independent entity until 1978. So why is that and how has it evolved since then?

Ann Peshoff:   2:05
Great question. UPPCC was established. Hasn't been that certifying body for good reason. And that is because UPPCC's main goal or purpose for existing is to offer professional certification in the way of the O the CPPO in the CPPB, and the strength of it being establishes an independent body is that it allows us to take an objective look at what knowledge, skills and abilities are important to have to be successful in the professional role of CPO and CPPB

Kevin Minor:   2:44
What is the difference between a CPPO and a CPPB which one do I need for what job?

Ann Peshoff:   2:52
So the CPPO is the certified public procurement officer, Of course, designed for those in upper-level management positions within public procurement or that have responsibility for supervising a staff of buyers. Um, whereas the CPPB certification is designed specifically for the buyers, the ones they actually purchasing, they can either be in a managerial or non-managerial function. The real difference is that they're not post questions on the exam as if they are managing or supervising.

Kevin Minor:   3:39
So can I get both, though, if I want?

Ann Peshoff:   3:43
yes and there's no specific order in what you can earn them. Usually, people will start with their CPPB and, as they move up in their professional, ultimately choose to turn CPPO, but we've also seen individuals that are in CPPO and go back and learn the CPPB be so they can relate better to their sapphires.

Kathleen Muretti:   4:10
I hold both certificate certifications and maintain both. I think they're both important. They both look at different aspects and I will always maintain both.

Kevin Minor:   4:23
So let's talk about the functions of the council. There's quite a few, but some of the main ones are to establish monitor and revised requirements for certification. Can you talk a little bit about that?

Ann Peshoff:   4:35
Yeah, that first function is encompasses very much the bulk of what we do at UK IPCC. We established the standards, the skills, knowledge and ability needed to become certified. Encompass in that is the eligibility requirements and requirements that you need. Teoh routinely research five. Your certification, Um, in U P pcc doesn't stop there. We have to continuously monitor those requirements and make adjustments as needed as we're hearing from the profession and as the board determines is necessary.

Kevin Minor:   5:17
So I hear a lot from what you guys were saying about accessibility and relevancy being very important parts of certification game. Is that right? Am I picking up what you guys were putting down?

Kathleen Muretti:   5:36
And yeah, I mean, procurement, public procurement were trusted stewards of taxpayer dollars. So we're held to a different level of excellence. We have to have the strictest level of care and judiciousness in conducting government business if it changes so rapidly. Ah, what is what is expected? And then what becomes just normal business being 10 years ago and we didn't have ah, online procurement. Now it's just a normal thing. Where is before the big thing that we were teaching on Now we're teaching about social procurement and ethical and green and sustainable, which is things that we never thought of 10 years ago. So and we have to be at the top of the game, and we have to be able to assert we have to be able to put that into our certification and make sure that there is, um, competency establishing. What is this? What is the standard competency that's required for at the old level and the B level for all these emerging new neutral column trends but emerging new accountabilities that professionals are gonna have to be capable of adapting,

Kevin Minor:   6:51
So you guys really have to adapt. I mean, you've seen, like you said from 10 years ago to now you've added so many different topics to the repertoire, and I can only imagine another 10 years that will be twice three times as many. So how do you guys stay relevant through the research?

Ann Peshoff:   7:15
That's that's one of the reasons, Well, why The job analysis process is so very important what we do, we routinely go out to the profession and have them tell us what skills knowledge inabilities are important to their everyday job in public procurement on we take that information back and use it to update our certification exams. That's what that way the professional and the certification exams continued to maintain a line.

Kathleen Muretti:   7:49
We're currently in the process of a job task analysis which started back in November of 2019 and this is my first time going through the entire process and it is incredibly robust, e ah, the level that has gone to to ensure that we have credible evidence that it is tested and retested and and was talking about the things that you're required to do in your, you know, daily tasks, making sure that all those elements air in there. But then also it's on, what's the frequency of how often you do it? Because if you only do it once a year and it's really important or do you do it once a year and it's not very important, So there's so many things that go into it, and right now we're out with our job Task Analysis survey, which we That's kind of like the final test of what we have put together so far, and that is looking for all professionals, whether they are certified or not takes about about half a Knauer, and that is the final test on. Have everything that we've captured so far, is it correct? And then we're looking for how important and how frequent they do it. So that is the that's most important part of the job task analysis is the response to this particular survey, and that's what's out there right now. And I think it closes on May 1st.

Kevin Minor:   9:10
So has the response rate looking for that so far. Do you have any data you can share with us?

Kathleen Muretti:   9:16
I'll tell you, we can't respond to that. I think one of the things Kevin, that's really important. And I just thought about it when you ask. That question is what we really want encouraged. There isn't a number that's too high for us, the more the better. Absolutely were actually about halfway there with the numbers that we absolutely need to have. We don't we don't give any of that statistics out because that becomes the basis for the, like, the foundation for it, and that's only we said. Then it becomes public and then we have to share it. We can.

Ann Peshoff:   9:44
The information that we're collecting the this job announces process is relevant. Not only Teoh, you've IPCC but profession itself because we're asking additional questions about this, Kathleen said before emerging trends, which will ultimately share of their education partners so that they could start developing content around these emerging trends. They may not rise to the level of importance or frequency in the current job being performed, but most likely they will be the next one to do a job announces site. So we like to capture all of that emerging information and share it with educational partners and monitor whether that appears on our next generation of job miles.

Kathleen Muretti:   10:40
Yeah, and I did it. So you know, it's incredibly important that we have active partners like now as Pope or going to look at what we're what we're trying to define for certification and be aligned and and work together to create education and training in support of the profession. Ah, CPPCC supports the profession. Ah, and that's that's our goal is to promote the values certification, identify the standards and develop certifications that are that are important and our relevance and are the gold standard. We need ah lot of partners to support us in that endeavor. And that's why it is very you, PPC see, just looks after certification because just doing that is an incredibly big task. And, uh, you need a lot of voters to be successful.

Kevin Minor:   11:40
Yeah, well, and it is. It's a huge responsibility That brings me to my next question. What is the importance of certification, and how does it help in one's career?

Ann Peshoff:   11:51
I think it demonstrates a commitment to professional development and excellence for the individual. Having those initials after your name is important for other colleagues to see that commitment and not only a one time commitment. It's an ongoing commitment to maintain it. It's also a benefit to the agency that their staff is, um, has been tested and certified against these standards of competency.

Kathleen Muretti:   12:27
Yeah, I think there's a huge sense of responsibility, uh, to give back to the your community or your state or your agency and procurement professionals, I think, have a huge amount of pride in what they do, how they do it, and that's very, very important. So

Kevin Minor:   12:48
let's talk just a little bit about the exam that you have to take to get your Oh or you be. And I know that I believe there's testing coming up in May. How has Cove in 19 Has that presented any challenges for you guys?

Ann Peshoff:   13:08
Absolutely. As you might expect, U P PCC partners with pro metric, and we test our candidates on computer through their professional network of testing centers throughout the world. Um, but as a result of coded 19 all testing centers through pro metric have been shut down. And, um, I

Kevin Minor:   13:34
can't go into a testing facility.

Ann Peshoff:   13:36
Yes, so are may testing Window most certainly will be impacted. So we started early in reviewing alternative solutions to testing in actual center, and we're offering Teoh candidates that were registered to take the May exams at a center Now can opt to test in the home or office, some through a new offering from her metric called pro Proctor basically allows them to use their own equipment, their personal computer, their work computer download an application, find a quiet, secure room to test in, and Theo examine is administered still, Proctor by alive professional proctor, but not physically with them, but monitoring them through Web cam. So that's something that's brand new well received by candidates on and we expect to be up and running well, scheduling those exams with them a week and if all goes well, we will consider having it as a permanent. Oh,

Kevin Minor:   14:54
really interesting. Does that swift change concern you at

Kathleen Muretti:   15:02
all? I had asked that when we first when it first was proposed and pro metric has been doing it for years. This isn't due for you, PPC see it is not new for pro metric pro metric is a leader worldwide in what they do. Eso I have I have no concerns at all I have. I think it's very, very exciting because we have. We have applicants that have to, you know, travel and again expend funds to get to where they can get to a test center. In some cases, I mean, there are test centres all over, but sometimes it's just not somewheres. Where are applicant is so the opportunity that we're going to have going forward to provide this proctor testing when that's what is more convenient for the applicant is actually just adds another element of ah of ah flexibility fortune certification without losing any of the integrity of the exams. So let's talk

Kevin Minor:   16:03
about earning contact hours and keeping your certification real quick. That's one thing that we haven't really touched on as much. It's equally as important as getting the certification is to maintain it so and I know we've covered it a little bit. But if you could just speak to the importance of maintaining the certification once you get it, how you can earn contact hours,

Kathleen Muretti:   16:29
you may be surprised at what does. Uh, um, what is allowed to be used for eligibility and one of the things in the professional procurement community is the networking aspect is probably one of the most important things in in being a professional procurement. Because if you don't have a network, you can't be the best at everything. And having your network to bounce things off of her get ideas is really important. So so the Pacific certifications I'll pass over to end to respond to

Ann Peshoff:   17:03
you. IPCC recognizes all sorts of training from all sorts of off providers. There's not a specific set of providers that required to take any training or professional development from long as you can relate it back to the current content outline for the exams, which right now is our to body of knowledge documents. And we do that because whatever professional development that you take, it needs to be relevant to what you're going to be tested on or the profession that you're serving. So all of those things where there's an instructor providing training, a moderator facilitator, some type of individuals living delivering the the training or educational activity would earn you credits. And you would earn credit at one contact our H one clock out. So he spent an hour in the workshops. It's an hour one contact out, and that would be the same for initial certification as this for re certification and recertification is that element that makes certification different than just a certificate certificate program is just verifying that you learned something, the education that was delivered to you at that moment. There's no additional requirement to maintain its ongoing professional development. Certification, on the other hand, does have that important. You have a credential that you display after your name and your signature on your resume. There's a new element of maintaining that has to be that if you don't maintain its, then you could potentially lose it. So the maintenance requirements are ensuring that you take a certain number of contact hours over a period of time. So for our sheriff vacations, both seats see PP o and will be. There are 45 contact hours that required over a five year period,

Kevin Minor:   19:14
45 over five years.

Ann Peshoff:   19:18
Yes, it was really wants not only

Kevin Minor:   19:21
serves to

Ann Peshoff:   19:22
a huge commitment and you can earn those hours pretty much anywhere. Taking mass put courses online so

Kevin Minor:   19:31
really quick before we go. I know that the 2020 job analysis survey is open right now. Is there one last thing that you guys want to say about that? To our listeners?

Ann Peshoff:   19:43
Certainly we would like to encourage everyone to complete 2020 Job Analysis survey. It's so important. Not just for you, p p c. C in our certifications, but the profession as a whole. Um, it's important to have all the feedback from not only those that hold CPP own CPP be certifications, but from those that don't hold any certifications at all. And if you're interested in pursuing certification or already certified, um, you can take 30 minutes of your time to complete the job analysis survey and are one contact hour towards applying for certification or towards your re certification.

Kathleen Muretti:   20:30
And I'd add to that Is that the way to spread the net on brought in the audience is we're asking everyone to share that within your own network. Everybody has different leaves that they know. Even you know, if there's 10 people in your agency, we want to hear from 10 people in your agency. It is, ah, terrible survey. And, ah, the more that the more responses that we can get, the better our information is going to be. And it serves your profession.

Kevin Minor:   20:59
Ladies, it was an absolute pleasure to speak with you today. Thank you for your time. Thank you for the invitation. So what about you? Do you think certification is important? Do you value it in your agency? Is it for the personal satisfaction, or is it a requirement? Perhaps it's both Personally, I think it's very important. Like Kathleen said, public procurement, you are trusted stewards of taxpayer dollar. You really are held to a different level of excellence. Basically, you have to do everything right all the time. You only have to do one thing wrong once it's a powerful thought. What certifications do you hold? How they help you in your career? Let me know. Email me podcast at NATPE oh dot org's Let's discuss. Also make sure that you complete that 2020 u P PCC Job analysis survey will put a link to that in the bio. It closes soon. You already finished the survey, consider sharing it and encouraging others in the role of public procurement to participate. It's extremely important. You know what else is important? Checking out the blawg on pole stop nascar dot org's Read those articles and subscribe to this podcast on Apple podcast Spotify or wherever you get your fresh listens. I'm Kevin Minor until next time.