Tuesday, November 02, 2010

ACS Certified Professionals Register

The Australian Computer Society sent me a handsome "Certified Professional" certificate, which I have framed and put on my office wall. This is to say I have met the requirements of the International Professional Practice Partnership (IP3). The ACS was the first national body to be accredited to this international program.

As an existing professional member of the ACS I was certified the easy way: by transition from the old scheme. New members have to undertake further education (such as with the ACS Computer Professional Education Program (which I wrote the Green ICT course for).

The certificate looks good on the wall, but on its own a paper certificates of little value. My clients never visit my office and so will never see the certificate. I communicate with them online and so need to be able to present my credentials online.

What is of more value that the paper certificate is the online ACS Certified Professionals Register which allows you to check my certification is current. You can also get a link to my web site and send me a message to verify I am the person listed in the register.

Some improvements could be made to the register:
  1. Register Web address: Give the register a simple web address, such as http://register.acs.org.au and include that address on the certificates. This way clients can verify the details of the paper document online.
  2. Member Web Address: Provide a unique web address for each entry in the register. At present you have to do a search to find me in the register. Instead a web address for my entry could be provided (such as http://register.acs.org.au/?no=7675474). I could then link from my online CV to my entry in the register. That would impress my clients, promote the scheme and allow verification.
  3. Online more like certificate: The register has a good simple web design. But it could be made to look more impressive, like the paper certificate, so that those reading it will be impressed that this is important information. One of my students did research on how to make a web page credible and an important factor is using organisation logos. So having the IP3 logo on the register page would increase its gravitas. Including the web address of the entry prominently on the page would also be useful. I can then append a copy to a job application, tender or expert witness statement to a court.


Craig Fisher said...

The register only show me "Unauthorised access". I guess it wasn't put together by a certified professional. :-)

Tom Worthington said...

Craig Fisher said November 02, 2010 10:47 AM:

>The register only show me "Unauthorised access" ...

Sorry, my mistake: I provided the wrong web address, the correct one is: http://www.acs.org.au/load/callcpsearch.cfm

Hopefully the ACS will not cancel my CP status for that mistake. ;-)

A passionate IT Professional said...

I think the registry has violate member's privacy. It provides phone number and partial address of members to the public.

Personal information including contact should not be displayed in the search result. If viewer wants to contact the member, a message should be sent via ACS to the member.

Tom Worthington said...

A "passionate IT Professional" said November 05, 2010 11:21 AM:

>... Personal information including contact should not be displayed in the search result. ...

The information displayed, at least for my register entry, is not personal. These are my business contact details, which I want potential clients to have.

>If viewer wants to contact the member, a message should be sent via ACS to the member.

Perhaps that could be an option. But when you are licensed as a professional, the public expects to have some details of who and where you are.

Tom Worthington said...

Another option for the ACS Certified Professionals Register would be to make it compatible with smart phones. This could be done with a little extra web code (no need for "apps").

Apart from allowing easier search of the register, this would provide a way for the professional to show off. You could being up your registration on your phone so it looked like a badge.