Leadership and Management

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How to Become a Chartered Manager

If you’re someone who’s always striving to do better in your management or leadership role, then it goes without saying that it’s important to develop your skills if you want to take your career to the next level.

While gaining new management qualifications (such as CMI or ILM) is often the ideal way to achieve this, if you’re looking to go that one step further, then earning prestigious Chartered Manager status along the way might also be in your best interest.  

What is a Chartered Manager?

A Chartered Manager is someone who is recognised and appreciated for their outstanding leadership skills by the Chartered Institute of Management (CMI).

Chartered Managers are typically responsible for the long-term success of the people, projects, and operations within their organisation, and as such, they know how to effectively deliver impactful results while setting a standard of excellence in the workplace.

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What is the value of Chartered Manager status?

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the labour market has been taking huge hits, making it difficult to know what to plan for as a working professional. However, with the elevated skills and unbeatable benefits that come with gaining Chartered Manager status, you’ll be prepared to lead your organisation with confidence in the face of the challenges ahead. 

Not to mention, Chartered Manager status is the highest accolade a manager can receive in their profession, acknowledging individuals for their exceptional leadership and commitment to continual professional development (CPD).

The skills and credibility that you’ll earn through achieving Chartered status will translate directly to your day-to-day role and add value not only to your career and organisation, but to the UK economy as well. Benefits include:

  • Managers seeing an average pay rise of £13,000 after becoming Chartered
  • Organisations boosting their revenue by an average of £62,000 every year by having a trained Chartered Manager on staff
  • An additional £22,400 in annual contributions to the economy from each manager becoming Chartered

Take a look at ‘The Value of Chartered Managers Infographic’ for more information.

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How do I become a Chartered Manager?

To achieve Chartered Manager status, you must be awarded by the CMI (Chartered Management Institute), the only professional body in the world that can award Chartered Manager status – and there are a few ways to get there depending on your current qualification and management experience. 

Route 1: CMI Fast Track

The Fast Track route (also known as ‘The Exemption’ Route) offers an accelerated assessment process by taking into consideration your prior studies with the CMI.

This route is ideal if you’re already an experienced manager and you want to achieve Chartered Manager status in a shorter period.

Eligibility Requirements

To become a Chartered Manager via the fast-track route, you must have all of the following:

  • A CMI Level 5 Diploma or above.
  • At least 3 years’ of practical experience in a management role.
  • Proven management skills and knowledge.
  • Commitment to CMI Professional Standards and CPD.

Submission Assessment

Your application submission to become a Chartered Manager will be in the form of a written assessment. This will need to demonstrate your competency to deliver effective management performance for your organisation and showcase your ethical practice and your plans for future development.

Route 2: Full Assessment (Degree)

This route is also known as the ‘Qualified Route’ and is ideal if you already hold a degree (or equivalent qualification) that’s related to management, leadership or business.

Eligibility Requirements

You must have all of the following:

  • A degree-level qualification focused on management, business, or leadership.
  • At least 3 years’ of experience in a management role.
  • Proven management skills and knowledge.
  • Commitment to CMI Professional Standards and CPD.

Submission Assessment

You’ll have a choice between either a written assessment or a professional discussion for this route.

You’ll need to demonstrate your consistent and effective performance within your organisation over the last 18 months, discuss what you’ve learned from your experiences, as well as illustrate your professional and ethical approach to applying your management skills.

Route 3: Full Assessment (Experience Only)

Known as the ‘Experiential Route’, this is ideal if you don’t hold any management qualifications but have significant experience as a leader.

Eligibility Requirements

You must have all of the following:

  • A minimum of 5 years’ management experience at operational/senior management level.
  • The ability to demonstrate impactful management practice within the last 18 months.
  • Proven management skills and knowledge.
  • Commitment to CMI Professional Standards and CPD. 

Submission Assessment

Your application submission for this route will be in two parts: a written assessment and an in-person interview.

The written submission must illustrate your high level of performance over the last 18 months. This will be followed by a telephone discussion with your Advisor-Assessor to discuss how you’ve used your skills and knowledge to lead and manage change within your organisation and your plans for continued development.

Your on-site interview, on the other hand, will further assess your knowledge of management and leadership and its practical application.

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Becoming a Chartered Manager demonstrates your competency, drive, and commitment to your organisation and career. 

With 95% of leaders agreeing that Chartered status has helped them to use their skills to produce better workplace results, it’s no wonder that it’s the pinnacle of achievement for professional managers.



Discover how an online CMI qualification can accelerate your career and help you gain Chartered Manager status.