Frequently Asked Questions

Tips for re-sitting a CPIM exam

It is always disappointing to miss passing a CPIM exam. NZPICS Committee, Tutors and Team wish to support you to be successful in all your exams. Below is some useful information that may assist you.

The diagnostics (your exam letter) will provide some indication of the knowledge gaps observed in the examination process. If you have been particularly weak in one area this may affect your overall result therefore review of the knowledge gaps become essential.

In 2011 APICS have also released a new APICS dictionary - the 14th edition. This is also available from the NZPICS Office.

If your experience with CPIM is slightly longer than 2 terms ago then it may be advisable to obtain some advice on how to proceed to regain momentum in gaining this very important and relevant qualification. In general it would pay to fully attend a lectured course wherever possible. These are available in Auckland in the evenings, Christchurch ex the NZMEA, and are also currently running in Nelson based on attendee registration. In general it would pay to obtain an updated version of the Workbook & the 14th edition of the APICS Dictionary.

If you lack confidence in a particular aspect of the subject then it will pay to obtain assistance. Contact the NZPICS office for information about the assistance we can provide. Assistance can come from another CPIM qualified person, extra reading material etc. NZPICS may be able to assist you to network with a person that can provide guidance beyond that of the lecturer.

We encourage you to persevere with your study. It is important to both yourself, and to the business you are employed by, to extend your capability by way of qualification. The CPIM course provides the opportunity to learn and deliver quality in Operations Planning and Control. The qualification is important as it benchmarks your performance! The subject matter is important to Distribution, Manufacturing, and Service organisations. APICS is continuously updating the content of each course and there are not inclusive of the most modern teachings in Lean, Theory of Constraints, Just in Time, and Total Quality Management.

If you require more information on passing CPIM exams, please contact the office for assistance.

Apics Learn it App - Download it today!

APICS have created their own app - Download the APICS Learn It app for your mobile and study while on the go. Have APICS terminalolgy always at your fingertips!

  • Over 4,500 terms and definitions from the APICS Dictionary 
  • Term of the day
  • Offline access—no Internet connection needed to use
  • Suggestions are displayed as you search for terms

Follow this link and: Get the APICS Learn It App today

Available on Apple and Android.

Improve your exam strategy

Improve your Exam Strategy

We should all know the Pareto (80:20) Rule where it applies to inventory management, and if you have prepared well for your exam, this rule will probably apply to the multi-choice questions you will encounter in your APICS exam, namely 80% of the questions will probably take you just 20% of the time limit. So here is an exam strategy to make the most of this.

Your first time through the exam questions, answer the ones that are easiest first. These are the ones where the answer comes quickly, the ones you really know.

When you hit a more difficult question that can’t be answered easily, or you are unsure, then leave it for later and move on. Chances are a similar question may exist further on that may jog your memory, or give clues on how to answer the earlier question you skipped.

This first run through the exam will clear all the easy questions quickly, giving you more time to spend on the more difficult questions. You will also find it will boost your confidence and get your memory flowing to tackle the harder ones. Don’t be disheartened if you skip more than a few, think of the ones you have already eliminated!

On the second run through, tackle the harder questions, and budget your time wisely. Leave enough time if possible for a third run through the exam to double-check all your answers.

Important – APICS questions can be tricky, they are designed to test your knowledge and also your understanding of the question, so read the question thoroughly, focusing on the key words in the question to aid you in picking your answer. If the answer is still not clear, try eliminating the wrong answers provided so that if you have to take a guess, at least the odds are shorter!

Thanks - NZPICS thank Ian Phillips, an NZPICS tutor, for this relevant insight to strategies for take the APICS exam. This approach is relevant with the new computer based testing approach; candidates can move backwards and forwards through the exam and so can make best use of the above approach.

About Ian: Find out more about Ian on our tutors and consulants page.

Master the SMR exam

Some students find the Strategic Management of Resources (SMR) course and exam the most challenging.

APICS master instructor Roger Harris, CFPIM, CIRM, CSCP, has helped many SMR candidates —including those who have failed the SMR exam multiple times—successfully pass the SMR exam using the information that is in this webinar. Avoid common problems candidates experience with the SMR subject matter and understand the critical knowledge required of successful SMR exam candidates.

Follow the link to watch this useful 50 minute presentiation. Once you land on the APICS page, open the “Exam Preparation tools and tips” drop down (in the middle of the page). You’ll see the webinar listed there:

SMR Webinar

{sliderIf I have an unexcused absense from my exam and have not cancelled, why do I forfeit my free?}

The exam space has been reserved for you and is held until cancellation is received. APICS pays the test vendor for all reserved seats, whether or not a candidate takes the exam.If you do need to cancel your exam - review the APICS CPIM or CSCP Exam Bulletin for current information on how to canel an exam. The Bulletin is available on the NZPICS Exam Page.

What happens if I have an emergency and cannot take my scheduled exam?

Rescheduling an exam
Candidates who need to reschedule their exam date within their chosen window must contact Prometric
no later than 24 hours prior to the scheduled exam and pay a USD $30 rescheduling fee. Reschedule
requests received less than 24 hours before the scheduled exam date will not be accepted, and if the
candidate does not test, the candidate forfeits the exam fees.

If candidates need to reschedule their exam date to a different window, they should follow the cancellation
policy below.

Canceling an exam
Candidates who no longer can test within their originally selected window must cancel the exam with
Prometric and pay the USD $30 cancellation fee. Candidates will receive an email notification from
Prometric with instructions on how to proceed.

Once the cancellation has been processed, candidates will be required to complete the Authorization to
Test Request Form again to request a new ATT for the same exam module. If a candidate chooses a new
window that starts within one year of the original date the ATT was issued, no additional fees will be
assessed. If a candidate selects a new window that starts after one year from the original ATT issue date,
they must pay a new exam fee. No refunds will be issued.You must notify APICS and NZPICS immediately.

Medical and other emergencies
If you have a medical or other emergency on the day of the exam, notify APICS and NZPICS as soon as you can. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for assistance.

You will be asked to supply written documentation verifying your reason for absence. No refunds are given for candidates who are absent from an exam without an acceptable reason.

What should I bring to the exam?

Reporting to the test center
Candidates must check in at the test center no later than 30 minutes before their scheduled appointment.
Candidates who arrive past this time may be refused admission to the test center and may lose their exam
appointment. Furthermore, they may be considered a no-show and may forfeit the full exam fee.

What to bring:
Candidates must bring a valid primary identification that includes a recent photograph and signature:

  • driver's license
  • passport
  • military ID
  • state ID
  • company ID

They also must bring a valid secondary identification that includes their signature:

  • credit card
  • check cashing card
  • citizenship card
  • APICS membership card
  • another ID from the primary list

The test center staff verifies only the first and last name on the IDs provided to ensure they match the first
and last name on the exam registration. No temporarily issued identification is accepted. Candidates who
do not bring these items on exam day or whose name on the registration does not match their IDs will be
denied admission to the examination. They will be considered a no-show and will forfeit the full exam fee.
Candidates who do not have a primary ID that meets the above requirements due to local standards
should contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for assistance.

An online computer calculator is available during each computer-based exam, but bringing a simple
nonprogrammable calculator into the exam room is also permitted.

English-native language translation books are the only written materials candidates may bring into the
exam room. These books should contain only the literal translation of English words, and should not
include a description of the meaning of the word. The test center manager will inspect these books before
candidates are admitted to the testing room.

What not to bring:

APICS Dictionary in any language

  • books or papers of any kind
  • protractors, compasses, rulers, stencils, digital assistants or other aids
  • electronic devices of any kind, including mobile phones and electronic dictionaries
  • food, drinks or tobacco
  • visitors

How should I prepare for each exam?

How you study and the amount of time you spend studying will depend upon the exam you are taking and your knowledge of the concepts being tested. After January 2013 all students receive access to APICS CPIM Online Study Tool. This has exam questions in both a untimed and timed format, as well as answers from each section of the workbook. NZPICS will provide you with an access code and class number so you can access the tool.

In addition the APICS Curricula and Certification Council has identified a number of primary references for each CPIM module. These references include texts, reprints of pertinent articles and case studies, and readings compiled from the Harvard Business Review.

How do I become certified in production and inventory management (CPIM)?

You must pass all five CPIM exams to earn your Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) designation.

  • Basics of Supply Chain Management
  • Master Planning of Resources
  • Detailed Scheduling and Planning
  • Execution and Control of Operations
  • Strategic Management of Resources

Candidates have 10 years to complete the Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) program; candidates can take exams based on their personal and professional schedules.

All students must be members of NZPICS Inc, at a cost of $55 +gst per year (July – June financial year or part thereof) and this entitles the student to regular newsletters, invitations to events and site visits where they can network and learn from their peers.

All students must purchase their own workbook before they are able to sit the exam, sharing of workbooks or the use of a second hand workbook is not allowed. Sharing of the dictionary and other text books is ok, although not recommended.