CMS Designation

About the Compensation Management Specialist (CMS) designation

The Compensation Management Specialist (CMS) designation is rooted in the principles of human resources, compensation design and administration, and executive compensation.  Cosponsored by Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia in Canada, it was available under the former, eight-course CEBS curriculum.

It was comprised of three courses from the previous CEBS curriculum (click on the course name for details):

CMS 1 – Compensation Concepts and Principles

CMS 2 – Executive Compensation Management

CMS 3 – Human Resource Management

The three courses comprising the CMS designation have been phased out as of March 31, 2018 and the CMS designation is not part of the new CEBS curriculum. 

What hasn't changed

You worked hard to earn this designation.  Once earned, the designation is yours to keep and you retain all the rights to use and display your designation on your online and offline business items, including cards, email signature, etc., as well as International Foundation and International Society publications or other education content. The redesigned CEBS program does not change your status as a CMS designee.

I'm still interested in compensation and HR, what are my continuing education options?

If you have a professional role or interest in compensation or human resources, consider these options for your professional development:

  • CEBS graduates can complete eligible activities relating to compensation or human resources to earn CEBS CPE credit. The CEBS content domain includes compensation and human resources . See for more information on CEBS compliant eligible activities and applicable credits.
  • Compensation and human resources topics are frequently included in the annual ISCEBS Continuing Education course.

If I speak, write or volunteer for the International Foundation, International Society or other professional group, can I use my CMS designation in my professional bio?

You are welcome and encouraged to use and display your CMS mark in any professional setting where you share your knowledge and expertise.

Going Forward

The CEBS Program is fully committed to recognizing and supporting all graduates and designees, their academic accomplishments, professional development and their contributions to the community of benefit professionals.  If you have questions about CMS not answered here, contact CEBS at