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CSPM Certification – Security Industry Association

A Certified Security Project Manager (CSPM ) is a professional experienced in managing a security project, which typically entails installing and integrating various components of a security system into a physical building structure. A security project manager’s central activities involve:

  • Leading the project team
  • Understanding the entire scope of work
  • Understanding, communicating and working with the project stakeholders
  • Anticipating and resolving problems
  • Maintaining control over the costs, schedule and quality of the project
  • Assuming responsibility for the entire project lifecycle
  • Working with salespersons to accurately define the customer’s security needs
  • Ensuring the compliance of the project with all applicable codes

The CSPM examination is designed to evaluate candidates seeking professional certification in the field of security project management. The design of the examination is set forth in the examination specifications, which define the content domains and sub-domains covered on the examination, along with the percent of items covering each domain and sub-domain.

The examination is comprised of 125 items. Two hours are permitted for the examination.

The CSPM exam is based on the following six domains:

  • Security Industry-Specific Knowledge & Initiation
  • Planning
  • Execution
  • Monitoring
  • Project Closing
  • Management Skills

For more information on the CSPM credential, download the CSPM Candidate Information Brochure and Study Guide 1.

Becoming a CSPM is a multi-step process:

1. Meet Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for the CSPM examination, a candidate must have a minimum of 6,000 hours (about three years) of hands-on project management experience, of which a minimum of 3,000 hours must have been in direct security project management experience.

Formal education may substitute for some of the required experience as follows:

  • A candidate with a two-year Associate Degree in a security-related discipline from an accredited* institution may substitute his or her degree for 500 hours of the required experience; OR
  • A candidate with a four-year Bachelor Degree from an accredited* institution may substitute his or her degree for 1,000 hours of the required experience; OR
  • A candidate with a four-year Bachelor Degree in Engineering, Architecture or Security from an accredited* institution may substitute his or her degree for 2,000 hours of the required experience.
  • A candidate who also has a Master Degree from an accredited* institution may substitute it for an additional 500 hours of the required experience.

*Must be accredited by one of the six regional accreditation bodies recognized and listed by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

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2. Apply to Take Exam

Candidates must complete CSPM Examination Application Form and pay the $325 non-refundable application fee.

Then, download a hard-copy of the application form and submit the completed form with a check or money order for $325 to the Security Industry Association to the address provided on the application form. Individuals will be notified by SIA of eligibility to sit for the exam. 3

When an applicant signs the CSPM Application form, he or she is legally attesting to the fact that the applicant has read and will abide by the Certification Agreement and Professional Code of Ethics, as found in the Candidate Information Brochure. Please carefully review eligibility requirements PRIOR to submitting completed application and non-refundable application fee. 4

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3. Study for Your Exam

In preparation for taking the exam:

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4. Schedule Your CBT Exam

When the application has been approved and you are determined to be eligible, you will be emailed an Authorization-To-Test in order to sit for the examination at a secure Kryterion computer-based testing site. This email will contain a link to the appointment website and login credentials. Candidates make their appointment to take the examination and pay the $125 testing fee on this website.

There are over 400 testing locations in the U.S. and Canada. Available dates and times vary by testing location.

Eligible candidates may register at any time to take the exam, but must take the exam within one year of the Authorization-To-Test notification. Failure to do so will require restarting the application process.

5. Pass the Exam

Pass the CSPM Examination with a scaled score of 700 points or greater. Passing candidates will be randomly selected and audited by SIA prior to issuance of any certificate.

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6. Maintain Your CSPM Certification

After you become certified by SIA, you are required to perform continuing education during each three-year certification cycle to become recertified.

The Continuing Professional Education (CPE) requirements are intended to ensure members maintain their competencies following initial certification. You may also demonstrate your competence for recertification by retaking the examination. After becoming certified, a CSPM must recertify for successive three-year certification cycles.

To recertify, a CSPM must be a member in “good standing,” which is defined as fulfilling one of the two ways to qualify for recertification:

  1. Earn the minimum number of Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits required within each three year certification cycle period (30 type A + 30 type B = 60 total)


Pay annual maintenance fees ($40)

  1. Retake and pass the Certification examination every three years
    (Outstanding annual maintenance fees and any late fees must be paid in advance of registration to retake the exam).

Pay annual maintenance fees ($40)

Type A Credits – Direct Security Project Management Activities.

Type A credits are earned for completion of activities which relate directly to the security project management profession. Generally, this consists of educational activities directly focused on the areas covered by the six (6) domains of the CSPM examination specifications. (See CSPM Candidate Information Brochure).10

Type B Credits – Professional Skills Activities.

Type B credits are given for completion of activities which enhance the credential holder’s overall professional skills, education, knowledge or competency. These educational activities include professional development efforts, such as professional speaking engagements, taking management courses, self-improvement courses, seminars, etc.

While these do not apply directly to the field of security project management, SIA recognizes these skills are vital for the growth of all professional managers.

Credits must be submitted to SIA via the CPE Submission form. 11

Annual Maintenance Fees (AMFs)

Payment of Annual Maintenance Fees (AMFs) ensures that the organization has the necessary financial resources to maintain member records, ensures certification continues to meet the needs and requirements of the market, and ensures that the organization will continue to be a functional, dynamic entity far into the future.

Code of Professional Ethics

In addition to satisfying the educational and experiential requirements, the CSPM Candidate must agree to abide by the Security Project Manager Code of Professional Ethics to earn the CSPM certification. SIA sets forth this Code of Professional Ethics to guide the professional and personal conduct of its certification holders. CSPM certification holders shall:

  • Hold paramount the safety, health and welfare of the public.
  • Act for each employer or customer as faithful agents or trustees.
  • Maintain the highest standard of personal and professional conduct.
  • Support the implementation of and encourage compliance with appropriate standards and procedures for the effective management of security projects and technology, including the installation, implementation, control, monitoring and risk management of each project.
  • Perform duties with objectivity, due diligence and professional care, in accordance with professional standards.
  • Serve in the interest of stakeholders in a lawful manner, while maintaining high standards of conduct and character, and not discrediting the profession or the Security Industry Association.
  • Maintain the privacy and confidentiality of information obtained in the course of their activities unless disclosure is required by legal authority.

    Such information shall not be used for personal benefit or released to inappropriate parties.

  • Maintain competency in the field of Security Project Management and agree to undertake only those activities he/she can reasonably expect to complete with the necessary skills, knowledge and competence.
  • Provide accurate, truthful information and representations concerning qualifications, experience and performance of work.
  • Inform appropriate parties of the results of work performed including the disclosure of all significant facts known to them that, if not disclosed, may distort the reporting of the results.
  • Refrain from engaging in activities for inappropriate personal gain at the expense of customers, his/her company or the profession.
  • Be accurate and truthful in all dealings with customers and be careful not to misrepresent the quality, availability or ability of my services.
  • Support the professional education of stakeholders in enhancing their understanding of the management of security projects.
  • Serve all members of the public impartially, providing no special privilege or substandard service based upon age, race, national origin, color, gender or handicapping condition.
  • Cooperate with SIA concerning ethics violations and the collection of related information.

    Failure to comply with this Code of Professional Ethics can result in an investigation into a certification holder’s conduct and, ultimately, in disciplinary measures.

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Application, Payment and Scheduling Process

IMPORTANT NOTE: SIA has employed ITPG, Inc. (ITPG), a professional testing company, to assist in the performance of various examination development and administration functions.

ITPG and its testing center network partner, called Kryterion , are the two companies whose names you will see referenced in this document and as you make your appointment and sit for your examination.

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Download Your Copy of the CSPM Candidate Information Brochure & Study Guide 13

For questions and inqueries about the CSPM Certification and Process, please contact:

Arminda Valles-Hall
Security Industry Association
[email protected]14

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  1. ^ download the CSPM Candidate Information Brochure and Study Guide (
  2. ^ Back to top (
  3. ^ download a hard-copy of the application form (
  4. ^ Candidate Information Brochure (
  5. ^ Back to top (
  6. ^ Candidate Information Brochure. (
  7. ^ MyGPS LMS (
  8. ^ Back to top (
  9. ^ Back to top (
  10. ^ (See CSPM Candidate Information Brochure). (
  11. ^ CPE Submission form. (
  12. ^ Back to top (
  13. ^ Download Your Copy of the CSPM Candidate Information Brochure & Study Guide (
  14. ^ [email protected] (
  15. ^ Back t o top (

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CSPM Certification – Security Industry Association

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