- Buyer's Guide
Professional certification based on the demonstration of knowledge through formal testing is a key element in lubrication and oil analysis programs. However, identifying the requirements for certification testing is often not as straightforward. Fortunately, online tools can help make the process easier. For example, the International Council for Machinery Lubrication (ICML) maintains a useful website – www.lubecouncil.org – to assist individuals with their certification needs.
One powerful function of the ICML website is its flexibility in viewing content in 11 different languages, specifically Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Russian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese and Spanish. The organization’s certification exams are available in these same languages. While the website’s default is English, non-English speakers can select a language from the pulldown menu or by clicking the appropriate flag on the righthand side of the home page.
Of course, the first step in achieving certification is to complete the necessary training. Most individuals prefer to schedule a certification exam immediately after training has been completed so the course information will still be fresh in their minds. ICML exam sessions typically are scheduled for the afternoon or morning following the training.
Training providers can often supply information on related certification exams. If the certification information isn’t included as part of the training offering or it’s not possible to take the exam immediately after the training, an exam can still be self-scheduled through the ICML website at a later date. Individuals who do not wish to self-register can also send an email to ICML and request scheduling assistance.
When scheduling an exam, be sure to allow ample time for testing. ICML does not limit an exam sitting to a single test. Any of its certification tests can be taken at each exam sitting. The exam session calendar feature on the organization’s website displays upcoming test sites throughout the world. Certification candidates are welcome to enroll at any of these published locations. An option also allows you to find nearby exams by entering your location in the search field. In addition, ICML can arrange for a private exam session. This will require sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s only natural that job duties and requirements may change as professional skills and competencies increase. The next logical career step is to extend your certification by enrolling in additional training and then following up with the next higher tier test. ICML certifications and training are offered in three distinct tracks and at progressively higher levels for Machine Lubricant Analyst (MLA), Machine Lubrication Technician (MLT) and Laboratory Lubricant Analyst (LLA). The ICML website describes the associated competencies for each of these certifications, including their requirements and the knowledge base needed. This information can be found under the “Certifications and Exams” menu tab.
Successfully completing a higher tier certification is one way to extend an ICML certification for an additional three years. The other option is to recertify. Recertification requirements are based on a point system. Maintaining employment as a lubrication professional will earn points to recertify, but this information must still be registered. If you would like to extend your certification or if your certification has lapsed, the ICML staff can help. Contact them via email at email@example.com.
ICML maintains a listing of all individuals who hold active certifications. This list can be accessed by navigating from the home page using the “Certified Professionals” menu tab. Certified individuals are listed alphabetically along with their company, country and all certifications currently held. As employment situations change, it is recommended that individuals review their information and provide ICML with corrections or updates when appropriate.
A certification is a valuable industry-based acknowledgement of a highly desirable skill set. It is useful for employers and employees alike. ICML’s website and other online tools can help both companies and certification candidates achieve the full benefits of certification. Be sure to take advantage of them in your certification journey.