Business of Certification Workshop



Tuesday, November 6
9:00 am - 5:00 pm 

The Renaissance Austin
Austin, TX

Early Bird Rate*
ICE Member: $355Nonmember: $385

Regular Rate
ICE Member: $400Nonmember: $430

Register Today

The Business of Certification Workshop will be hosted during the pre-conference day of the ICE Exchange. 
*The Early Bird Rate expire Friday, October 5, 2018.

Intended Audience

This workshop is designed for strategic decision-makers of certification programs and other senior staff and board members responsible for developing business strategy. 

Quality Content

Once your certification program is up and running, you discover the real truth about managing these programs: ensuring psychometric soundness and legal defensibility is the easiest part of administering the program. There are widely available standards and accepted practices you can rely on for guidance. Succeeding in the business of certification is the real challenge.

This workshop provides a unique opportunity to take a focused, deep-dive into the business of certification. We will address five fundamental questions pertaining to the development of business strategy by certifiers:

  • What is our value proposition and how can we enhance it?
  • What is our business model and how can it guide our decision-making about business strategy?
  • At what stage in the certification program lifecycle is our credential and what types of strategies are most relevant at this stage?
  • How do we identify and evaluate new revenue opportunities (e.g., market expansion, additional products for candidates and certificants)?
  • How should we retool strategy when our certification business falters (i.e., volumes decline, plateau, or never reach expected levels)?

To fully leverage the value of the workshop, you will receive an assignment to complete prior to the event.

Learning Objectives

  • Use value dynamics to identify opportunities for creating greater value for credentials.
  • Describe the key elements of a certification business model and how they relate to the formulation of business strategy.
  • Identify the stages of the Certification Product Lifecycle and the strategies most relevant at each stage.
  • Delineate tools and processes which can be used to identify new revenue opportunities and list factors to be considered when deciding whether to pursue these opportunities.
  • Summarize the most common reasons for a faltering certification business, possible strategies for mitigating these circumstances, and exit strategies to implement if problems cannot be resolved.

Recommended Reading

We recommend participants read, The Business of Certification: Creating and Sustaining a Successful Program (2nd Ed). The book discusses the application of business principles such as marketing and business planning to the creation of certification products and provides insights into the challenges and opportunities faced by established certification programs. 

Please note: ICE members can receive a discount on the purchase of this book. Email for additional information.


In this interactive learning event, we will provide ideas, processes and tools you can use immediately to guide your organization in defining a clear vision for your future business strategy. You also will have the opportunity to share your challenges and "wins" in the business of certification and learn from those of your colleagues.

Pre-Workshop Assignment

Please map your organization's business model using the Business Model Canvas prior to the workshop. You may find it beneficial to print the canvas in poster size. The purpose of this activity is to “put to paper” your business model and value proposition. During the workshop, we will draw on the insights you have gained from completing the canvas.

If you are not familiar with the canvas, the following two-minute introductory video, along with the questions embedded in the canvas, should be sufficient to orient you to the process: