Did you know that half of the meeting planners out there have never heard of the designations DMCP and ADMC? If you’re one of them, here’s what you need to know about these two programs from the Association of Destination Management Executives.

DMCP CERTIFICATION

Obtaining the DMCP works much like obtaining your CMP (in fact. the CMP was used as a model when designing the DMCP certification). The objective in creating the DMCP program was to increase professionalism within the destination management industry by establishing a level of knowledge and performance; identifying the body of knowledge required; recognizing and raising industry standards and practices, and thereby ethics; and maximizing the value of the services that certified professionals can provide. Ultimately this certification would offer the consumer a way to identify qualified DMCs with certified professionals on staff.

In order to sit for the exam to become a DMCP, you’re required to have a minimum of three years’ experience in destination management and a bachelor’s degree in a hospitality-related major from an accredited university.

Applicants must be currently employed with a DMC and have accumulated 90 points out of a possible 150 from five different areas: experience, management, education, industry-related memberships, and professional contributions to the industry. DMCPs must re-certify every five years to retain the certification.

DMC ACCREDITATION

After the DMCP designation was established, the DMC industry felt it was time to begin accrediting companies as well as individuals. ADME began to build the criteria that would be needed to meet the definition of a qualified DMC so that meeting planners would have the means to identify an accredited company.

Sixteen standards were identified that a company must meet in order to qualify for the ADMC. Some of those are:

•Maintains a proper business license and is in good standing with their state

•Has been a registered business for a minimum of five years

•Directly provides four of the five core DMC services (special events, staffing, tours, transportation coordination, and program logistics)

•Maintains a permanent non-residential office with standard office hours

•Has at least one DMCP on staff

•Carries a minimum of $1 million in general liability insurance coverage.

As part of the application process, companies are required to show:

•articles of incorporation

•a certificate of insurance

•a letter from their CPA stating the company’s financial stability

•client references

•a list of employees who have earned certifications within the hospitality industry.

A company must apply for re-accreditation every three years..

Susan Gray, DMCP, is president of MAC Meetings & Events, St. Louis and president-elect of the Association of Destination Management Professionals. She has more than 20 years of experience in destination management, meetings, and events.