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My Time is Up! Time to Re-certify my CBAP!

Being a CBAP does not last forever! That is, unless you re-certify. Every three years, those who carry the CBAP designation must re-certify with the IIBA. This is to make sure the recipients “demonstrate an ongoing professional commitment to the business analysis profession…” as stated in the Recertification Handbook. In order to make sure I kept my CBAP designation, I began my process of recertification as documented in this blog. This was how I went about it, and I hope it helps you in your quest.

I became number 901 in March, 2010. So, by the end of March 2013 I have to reapply. I started looking ahead to figure out what I needed to do in order to meet the qualifications prior to the actual date. Really, my quest for recertification started as soon as I became a CBAP. A great place to start is on the IIBA website, upon which I downloaded the CBAP recertification package. That gave me instructions on what I needed to do.

Reading the handbook, it identified several tasks one needed to do in order to recertify, but the most daunting one was the Continuing Development Units (CDUs). These units ensure that you, as a BA, stay current with your experience and stay up to date on the latest trends. Keeping track of them was going to be another matter. While ultimately they need to be reported in the official CDU reporting form which is submitted to the IIBA, there was nothing that prohibited me from creating my own tracking tool and using it in order to calculate my running totals. And what better tool to use than the BA’s favorite number-crunching tool, Excel.

  1. I created the spreadsheet with four columns: the Activity, the Date when I performed the activity, the Category the activity fell under, and finally, the actual CDUs that the activity generated. On the right-hand side of these four columns, I have a running total of the amount of hours applied to each of the categories, as well as the maximum hours I can apply to recertification in each category. You can download and use the spreadsheet for your own use here, [downloadlink id=47 linktext=”CDU Tracking Spreadsheet”] .
  2. Then, as I went about my business analysis life after taking the CBAP exam, each time I performed an activity, I would record the hours and the category under which they fell. This way, I had a running total of my BA activities.

A BA must achieve at least 60 CDUs during the three-year period, so the running total showed me how close I was to attaining my goal. According to the IIBA, you may carry up to 20 CDUs into the next 3-year recertification cycle, but only if they were accumulated in the last year of your 3-year cycle. More information is contained in the handbook. In fact, any questions about recertification and the handbook is the final arbiter.

One final note – the IIBA requires you to keep a personal recertification folder supporting the claims of your CDUs. The spreadsheet helps with that to show the dates and activities performed on those dates, including a contact name. I feel if I am ever audited, I can easily access what I did on a particular date.

On Mar 20, the IIBA accepted my recertification, so you should be good to use the methods I used as well. Please share your stories of recertification and how you went about it!

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