Certified Meeting Professionals, while mostly satisfied with the value of their professional designation, are looking for improvements to the program, according to the first survey of current and past CMPs commissioned by the Convention Industry Council, a meetings-industry umbrella organization that administers the CMP.

When asked what they felt was missing from the CMP experience, 52 percent of survey respondents said online training and 37 percent said an advanced-level CMP designation; 34 percent wanted more local events. In addition, 46 percent of respondents indicated they would like CIC to offer advanced-level CMP classes.

The survey, conducted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Survey and Research Center for the CIC, gauged 917 individuals — 77 percent planners and 23 percent suppliers — on their satisfaction with the CMP program and their recommendations for its future.

CIC relies primarily on its member organizations, including Meeting Professionals International and the Professional Convention Management Association, to provide training and continuing education for the CMP program, says Manju Mathai, marketing associate for CIC. “We have passed these findings to our member organizations.”

As for an advanced-level CMP designation, Mathai says it is under consideration by the CIC and the CMP boards. “With such an overwhelming interest from respondents … and with so many CMPs with 11 years' experience or more [88 percent of the respondents], we think it is definitely something to take into consideration.”

Another highlight from the study: 84 percent of CMPs say that they plan to recertify every five years for the duration of their careers. This is a significant jump from CIC's actual renewal rate of 65 percent. Respondents who did not plan to renew said cost and continuing-education requirements were the main barriers.

Other Key Findings:

  • Most respondents (82 percent) say that they are “extremely satisfied” or “satisfied” with the value received from their CMP.

  • The top reasons respondents decide to become a CMP are personal satisfaction (85 percent), to increase their value to an employer (72 percent), and to gain general knowledge (60 percent).

  • Industry recognition (85 percent) and sense of personal achievement (82 percent) ranked as the top two factors in decisions to recertify.

Of the planners who participated in the survey, 28 percent work in associations, 23 percent work in corporate environments, and 21 percent work as independents or consultants, with planners from third parties, government, medical, and other fields making up the balance.

West Coast Fast Lanes

San Francisco Inter-national Airport in mid-September opened Registered Traveler lanes designed to speed enrolled travelers through airport security, the first airport on the West Coast to do so. Verified Identity Pass's Clear program opened express lanes at both of San Francisco's domestic terminals.

Other destinations with fast-lane programs include:

  • Albany, N.Y.
  • Cincinnati
  • Huntsville, Ala.
  • Indianapolis
  • Little Rock, Ark.
  • New York's JFK
  • Newark, N.J.
  • Orlando, Fla.
  • Reno, Nev.
  • San José, Calif.
  • Westchester County, N.Y.

Clear also has announced a partnership with AirTran Airways to set up Registered Traveler Lanes at New York LaGuardia's Central Terminal, the first domestic carrier to sign on with an RT provider.