Individual Chartered Status (ICS)

When the CIPP achieved Chartered status back in 2011 this was a huge step forward in raising the profile of our profession and it was a cause for great celebration.  But we still had a lot further to go and so, in 2015, the CIPP board of directors put forward a proposal to introduce ‘Individual Chartered Status’ for its members at the 2015 AGM. The members voted to accept the new level of membership, which resulted in a requirement to make changes to the Charter to accommodate it.

Since the Privy Council approved our application to extend the Charter at the end of 2016, we have now agreed the framework for this exciting new level of membership.

What will Individual Chartered Status mean for you?

As an individual Chartered member you will be recognised within the industry as achieving the highest level in our profession, committed to compliance and best practice within payroll and pensions administration and management.

Individual Chartered Status, also referred to as being a Chartered member, is a unique level of membership within the payroll profession and is available to individuals meeting the eligibility criteria. Charted member status is by application only, you do not have to apply if you don’t want to or if you are not in a position to do so.

Criteria for Individual Chartered membership

In order to apply for Individual Chartered Status applicants must hold as a minimum, a level 5 qualification in payroll, pensions, or reward.

CIPP qualifications satisfying the criteria will be:

  • Foundation Degree in Payroll Management
  • Diploma in Payroll Management
  • Foundation Degree in Pensions Management
  • Diploma in Pensions Management
  • BA (Hons) in Applied Business and Management
  • Advanced Diploma in Payroll Management
  • MSc in Business and Reward Management
  • MSc in Payroll and Business Management
  • MSc in Payroll Management

External qualifications satisfying the criteria would be:

  • Payroll Alliance Advanced Diploma in Payroll Management (level 5)
  • The Learn Centre – Pearson Edexcel BTEC Level 5 Professional Diploma in Payroll Management
  • CIPD level 5 Diploma in Human Resource Management
  • CIPD level 7 Advanced Diploma in Human Resource management
  • PMI Diploma in Retirement Provision

In addition to the qualifications achieved, applicants must also have sufficient experience in the industry at a strategic level to evidence their skills and abilities as a qualified CIPP Individual Chartered Member. Therefore the minimum required experience will be as follows:

  • Foundation Degree (or equivalent level 5 qualification) – with 3 years experience
  • BA (or equivalent level 6 qualification) – with 2 years experience
  • MSc (or equivalent level 7 qualification) – no further elapsed time required

Chartered members are also required to maintain at least 40 CPD points during a subscription year to retain Individual Chartered Status. This is not required for application but will be checked upon renewal. See below for information on CPD.

Benefits of Individual Chartered Status

  • Unique designatory letters and the use of the title Chartered Member in full after your name
  • Use of the CIPP logo in a personal context
  • Listed as a Chartered member on the CIPP website
  • The opportunity to be recognised as achieving the highest level in our profession by demonstrating individual payroll professionalism
  • Raising the standards of the payroll profession and its members to be on more of an equal footing with members of other chartered bodies

Who can apply

Applications are welcomed from any payroll professional who has demonstrated a commitment to the profession through qualifications and experience. Applicants must hold, as a minimum, a level 5 qualification in payroll, pensions or reward.  In addition to the qualification achieved, applicants must also have sufficient experience in the industry at a strategic level to evidence their skills and abilities as a qualified Individual Chartered Member of the CIPP. The specific criteria required is shown below.

How to apply

If you have the necessary qualifications and experience you can apply for Individual Chartered Status by completing an electronic application form available from the membership page of the CIPP website and providing evidence of achievement of your formal qualifications along with an up to date copy of your CV.

The application form provides you with an opportunity to provide examples which demonstrate how you have used your experience for the benefit of the profession and of course your organisation.

Existing members wishing to upgrade to ICS can do so up to three months before their usual annual renewal date.  The upgrade will take effect from the annual renewal date. 

Click here to apply for Chartered membership.

When can I apply

Applications can only be made upon your renewal date. Three months before your renewal date the application process will be open allowing you to begin at this stage. You are unable to apply during your membership term.

For example:

If your membership is due for renewal 1 January 2018 you can start the application process 1 October 2017.
If you renewed your membership 1 September 2017 you can start the application process 1 June 2018.

How much will it cost

The annual subscription fee is £240.  Individuals applying for Individual Chartered Status will be required to pay a £195 assessment fee at the time of application and this is non-refundable.  Should an application be unsuccessful, subsequent reapplications will be subject to a charge of £150 for the re-assessment.

Any non-members applying for ICS will also be required to pay a £35 registration fee.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

CPD is a combination of approaches, ideas and techniques that will help you manage your own learning and development. It will help you keep your skills up to date and prepare you for greater responsibilities.

In accordance with the CIPP code of conduct, all associate, full and fellow members need to record their CPD to be able to renew their membership. This requirement is heightened for Individual Chartered Status members who, in order to retain their Chartered membership, will need to record a minimum of 40 points of relevant CPD activity, at least one of which should be categorised as Structured Learning or through attendance at a CIPP event.

The requirement to record at least 40 points of CPD activity in order to maintain ICS applies to all Chartered members, including those whose organisation has attained a Payroll Assurance Scheme or Payroll Quality Partnership award.

The CIPP continuously spot checks CPD activity so make sure you take the time to log any form of learning or development on your record to ensure your membership level is maintained.

You can find more information about CPD and how to log your learning and development activities here.

Contact us

If you require any help with your CPD or you have any questions about Individual Chartered Status please email or call 0121 712 1073. If you would like to discuss your CPD further, the CIPP also offers face to face appointments at all of our events.

Individual Chartered Status FAQ's

How are applications assessed?

Applications will first be checked by the membership team to ensure they meet the required criteria and have provided all relevant information.  Applications which satisfy the criteria, and have fully completed all sections of the form, including the questions asking for detailed evidence of competencies, will be assessed by an independent assessment committee.

Applicants will be assessed holistically across all aspects of the CIPP activity, to ensure they strategically represent the values, aims and objectives of the CIPP, pertaining to the CIPP code of conduct. 

How long does the assessment process take?

It is important that each application is carefully and thoroughly assessed and as such the process may take up to three months from the date the application is submitted until the date the applicant is advised of the outcome. We recommend that existing members who would like to apply for ICS submit their application approximately three months before their usual renewal date.

What happens if my application is unsuccessful?

The membership will advise an applicant if their application has been unsuccessful and will provide feedback as to the reasons why.  An unsuccessful applicant may formally appeal against the decision which will be reviewed by the governance committee.  If the governance committee upholds the decision made there will be no further redress for the applicants.

Applicants can of course act upon the feedback received and submit a further application which will be subject to a one-off charge of £150 for the re-assessment.

What is the assessment process?

The following step by step guide shows how the assessment process works.

Step 1 – The member completes an electronic application form. This is designed to gather information on the applicant’s skills and experience relating to management experience (self and others), specific management achievements (such as strategic projects), managing finances and resources, and other general strategic activity.

The applicant will also be expected to agree to the CIPP terms and conditions, and abide by the CIPP code of conduct. Evidence of achievement of formal qualifications is also required, along with an up to date copy of the applicant’s CV.

Step 2 – The assessment committee will receive a copy of the member’s application form and accompanying documentation. Each member of this committee will complete an independent assessment.  Once agreement is reached, the committee will submit its recommendation.

Step 3 – The successful member will receive their ICS certificate, and will be asked for permission for their name to be published on the CIPP Individual Chartered Member list on the website.

Once ICS has been achieved by the member, in order for them to retain their enhanced member profile, at least 40 points of relevant CPD must be recorded annually.


When can I apply?

For existing members, their upgrade to ICS would take effect from their usual annual renewal date.  To allow time for the application to be assessed and processed we recommend that members apply for the upgrade approximately three months before their annual membership renewal date.

Why does the criteria require both experience and a qualification?

Chartered member status recognises those who have reached the very highest level in our profession. It is awarded based on a combination of both experience and qualifications, and those who achieve Chartered status should then demonstrate commitment to maintaining that knowledge and keeping up to date. And it is on this all round achievement that the Queen's Privy Council granted us the authority to award Chartered member status – the mark of an up-to-date, experienced and qualified payroll professional.