This piece has been updated as of February 9, 2024 to reflect up-to-date information. 

As in many other professions, those who work in the supply chain management field can obtain various certifications—including the APICS, CPIM, CPSM and CSCP certifications— to advance their careers. Learn how to earn a supply chain certification, which supply chain management certifications are the best and how to find supply chain management online courses.

What Does a Supply Chain Certificate Mean for My Business?

If you are a consultant or other self-employed professional, earning a supply chain certification can help your business in several key ways. For starters, being certified proves your business is credible and meets or exceeds the core certification requirements, which makes your enterprise more attractive to potential clients or partners. If you’re an individual working in the field, it will make you a stronger job candidate with employers. Certification also justifies charging higher rates or asking for higher pay.

Top 10 Supply Chain Certifications

The supply chain management certifications considered top ten in the industry are:


Navigating the world of supply chain management certifications can be a complex journey, but it's a crucial step for those looking to enhance their career in this dynamic field. With the number of certifications available, such as SOLE, NCMA, APICS, and CPIM, each offers unique benefits and caters to different professional needs and career trajectories.

The first step in selecting the right certification is to clearly define your career goals. Are you aiming to specialize in logistics, procurement, contract management, or another specific area within supply chain management? For instance, if your focus is on logistics, a SOLE certification, which emphasizes logistics expertise, might be the most beneficial. On the other hand, if contract management is your area of interest, the NCMA certification would be more relevant.

It's also important to consider the stage of your career. Are you a new hire and seeking to make a start in the industry, or are you an experienced professional looking to further your expertise? Certifications like the CPIM are excellent for those looking to deepen their knowledge in production and inventory management, making it ideal for mid-career professionals. Other supply chain certifications on this list are aimed at professionals with over 10 years of experience or who have already acquired advanced Master’s degrees.

Finally, another critical factor is understanding the recognition and demand for the certification in your desired industry sector. Researching job listings and speaking with industry professionals can provide insights into which certifications are most valued by employers.


Q: What are the benefits of obtaining a supply chain management certification?

A: Obtaining a certification in supply chain management can lead to enhanced career opportunities, higher earning potential, and increased professional credibility. It demonstrates a commitment to the field and a mastery of specific skills and knowledge that are highly valued in the industry.

Q: How long does it typically take to complete a supply chain management certification?

A: The duration varies depending on the specific certification and your pace of study. Some certifications can be completed within a few months, while others might take a year or more, especially if they require professional experience or extensive study.

Q: Are there online courses available for these certifications?

A: Yes, many organizations offer online courses for supply chain management certifications. These online programs provide flexibility for professionals who are balancing work and study. They often include interactive modules, virtual lectures, and online exams, making them a convenient option for many.

Q: Is work experience required for obtaining these certifications?

A: It depends on the certification. Some, like the APICS Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM), require specific levels of work experience, while others might be more accessible to individuals new to the field. Always check the eligibility requirements of each certification program.

Q: Can these certifications be renewed, and if so, how?

A: Yes, most supply chain management certifications require renewal. This usually involves earning a certain number of professional development points or continuing education credits within a specific time frame. The renewal process ensures that professionals stay current with industry trends and ongoing education.

Q: Are there any prerequisites for enrolling in these certification programs?

A: Prerequisites vary by certification. Some may require a bachelor’s degree or a certain number of years of professional experience, while others are open to all levels. It's important to review the specific requirements of each program before applying.

Q: How does acquiring a supply chain certification impact salary and career advancement?

A: Professionals with supply chain management certifications often have a competitive edge in the job market, which can lead to higher salaries and more advanced career opportunities. Certifications are a testament to a professional's expertise and dedication to the field, making them more attractive to employers.

Q: Can I pursue more than one certification?

A: Absolutely! Many professionals choose to pursue multiple certifications to broaden their expertise and increase their marketability. One may choose to pursue additional certifications as they acquire more years of on the job experience, earn additional degrees, or switch industry sectors.

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