I have been a member of AIIM since 1970 and a member of ARMA since 1976. I have worked in the RIM profession since 1966 and I earned my CRM designation in 1992. So, for what it is worth, here are my thoughts on CIP and CRM and AIIM and ARMA and the whole so-called controversy over which is the "true" representative of our profession.
I've always looked at AIIM as the technical side of RIM. It is where I started, of course, in the microfilm technology aspect years ago, and AIIM was the best source of information. It has continued to be an excellent source of learning and information about all the technology that we must use or be aware of in our profession. I've always seen ARMA as the RIM concept and principles source of information. The basics and the foundation of RIM, without which, we would not survive as a profession. Each and every "new" use, need, and development in the information field that impacts recordkeeping can and should be approached with a good knowledge of the foundation of the processes. This is what ARMA gives us. I believe the two associations are yin and yang for our profession, not one instead of the other. I've always been able to learn about what I need to know from one association or the other, but rarely from only one to the exclusion of the other.
In keeping with this view, I see the CRM as the foundation of our core of knowledge. It is generic and non-US centric because it is offered world-wide and is not limited to ARMA or NIRMA or AIIM any other association teachings. From what I can tell from the literature, the CIP fills a specific technology need that is in addition to the CRM coverage. Considering we already have to pass 6 exams to earn the CRM, and the ICRM already spends a great deal of time reviewing and updating the exam test bank to keep it current, adding more and more specific technological knowledge to the exams will eventually create a monster that no one would want to undertake. I see a place for both certifications, just as there is a place for both professional associations.
(Virginia A. Jones, CRM, FAI)
Information Technology Division
Newport News Dept. of Public Utilities
Newport News, VA
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