If you have ever met me, or indeed read anything I have written, it is extremely likely you will know that I am rather passionate about the Customer Experience (CX) Profession. In fact, anyone who comes in to contact with me via any means will almost certainly fail to avoid that fact! I make no apology for it – those of us who have chosen to dedicate our careers to enabling organisations to genuinely ‘operationalise’ CX, need and deserve to have their skills and capabilities recognised for what they are. Customer Experience is a science – the more people who have the recognised knowledge and ability to apply the science, the better place the world will be for all customers and all employees.

When the world’s first professional qualification in CX was launched by the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA) in 2014, finally the profession was in a position to give CX Professionals the ‘earned authority’ they so richly needed. Since 2014, over 700 professionals have achieved Certified Customer Experience Professional (CCXP) status around the world. It is wonderful to see so many brilliant professionals getting the recognition for their chosen specialism – however, we are still at the very start of a new emerging profession.

Interest in the CCXP accreditation continues to grow at pace every year. More and more individuals working in the field of CX and the companies they represent, are looking to attain what is still the worlds only truly independent professional qualification in the field.

However… there is always one of those… getting CCXP accreditation is NOT easy. As a former mentee of mine once said, becoming a CCXP is ‘reassuringly difficult’! It is reassuring because to get the CCXP letters after your name, it is not a ‘gimme’. Anyone who has achieved CCXP status has absolutely earned it – they are experienced practitioners who have the required level of knowledge in 6 defined competency areas.

There are a number of ways that anyone who is interested in becoming a CCXP can seek help and guidance. There are a number of resource and training providers who offer a variety of solutions to help get you prepared. Last year, the amazing Michael Bartlett, a proud CCXP himself, launched a training guide to help people preparing to take the CCXP exam. The book, CCXP Exam Preparation, has not only help many people to achieve CCXP status, it has also helped many animals (of the furry kind) too – all the profits from the sale of the book are donated to animal charities. You can find out more about the book here.

I have known Mike for many years now – he is as madly passionate about the development of the profession as I am. It is so refreshing to meet people who are prepared to do whatever it takes to help those who also have a real passion for the subject. So when he contacted me earlier this year to tell me he had taken his desire to help one step further – I was literally brimming with excitement!

Four years after the professional qualification was launched, I am delighted to formally announce the launch of Mike’s brand new CCXP Exam Simulator. The final hurdle to achieving CCXP accreditation, the exam itself is incredibly challenging. A multiple choice exam in a subject that is not ‘black or white’, sends many aspiring CCXPs into mental breakdown. As CX is an experiential profession, there is no textbook – up until now, the closest any aspiring CCXP has come to seeing what they may expect in the exam itself, are a small sample of questions on the CCXP website and forty example questions in Mike’s book. Knowing what to expect in the exam is critical – which is why Mike believed it was possible to create a way of simulating it. If there was a way of actually ‘pretending’ to the exam in as close to exam conditions as possible, that would be hugely powerful at preparing those who are ‘ready’ to take it. Mike’s desire has become a reality – and on behalf of  the profession (if I may be so bold), I am hugely thankful to him for making it become so. In Mike’s own words:

“The CCXP Exam Simulator was designed to meet a need I saw in the market: namely giving students a chance to experience the exam and the types of tricky CCXP questions they will face in a practice environment that mimics the actual exam conditions. It is much harder than the real exam but explores the same six core competencies to a deeper level. This was done to over-prepare students and make the simulator future proof. To date, since launching over a month ago, I have not had a single student fail the exam after using the simulator.”

“I am thrilled to be partnering with Ian Golding. When I first joined the CXPA he was one of the first few bloggers I started following and I will always regard him as the unofficial Mr Customer Experience. To be able to work alongside him to further the community and the discipline is a real honour. It started with my book which he included with his training and has now extended to the simulator. I hope we can continue to collaborate as I bring new innovations to the table to help CCXP students in the future.”

The simulator shows you how you have performed across the 6 competencies and provides a predicted score for the real exam

Unlike the real exam, you are able to interrogate your answers to see where you went wrong

The launching of the exam simulator is a significant advancement in the ability to assist anyone who has an aspiration of becoming a CCXP. Yet I must make it clear – to even get to the point of wanting to sit the exam, you MUST be ready to do so. As stated before – CCXP is an experiential qualification. You must fulfil the eligibility criteria before you even start the process. Once you have fulfilled those criteria, then you must assess if you have the required level of knowledge – to do that, you need to be comfortable with the exam blueprint.

If you would like to know more about the simulator, how you can get access to it, or how I or my peers can provide you with other forms of knowledge transfer solution to become a CCXP, please do not hesitate to email me at ian@ijgolding.com