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C(k)P® Designation Overview - Student Application & Certification Process

The C(k)P® Certified 401(k) Professional Designation represents the pinnacle of achievement for the professional Retirement Plan Advisor, recognizing a combination of substantial practical retirement plan management experience, and the completion of a comprehensive and highly specialized educational program. To earn the right to use the C(k)P® designation requires more than just academic aptitude. A financial professional must have demonstrated real world application of the core competencies taught in the classroom.

C(K)P® Designation Program:

The C(k)P® Designation or Certified 401(k) Professional Designation is administered by The Retirement Advisor University in collaboration with UCLA Anderson School of Management Executive Education. The C(k)P® Designation identifies individuals who have been authorized to use the C(k)P® Designation certification marks in the USA by identifying financial professionals who have the knowledge and experience to favorably affect the outcome of corporate retirement plans.

C(k)P® Designation holders have:
  • Demonstrated competency and experience in the retirement field
  • Completed a rigorous and unique education course work experience
  • Agreed to adhere to a code of conduct and ethics.
The education course work includes classroom, online, and live online instructor led courses, as well as periodic assessments, an exam and a case study. The conduct and ethics codes embrace the core values of integrity, diligence, fairness, and objectivity.

The C(k)P® Standards & Certification Committee sets the standards for the Certified 401(k) Professional Designation. Designation candidates are expected to develop a high degree of knowledge and ability in the following study areas:
  • Technical Competence
  • Optimizing Plan Outcomes
  • Management and Business
  • Sales & Marketing
The prerequisite* to use the C(k)P® Designation on marketing materials consists of personally having:
  • 10 plans under management/advisory
  • $30 million of assets under management/advisory
  • 3 years of experience in the defined contribution industry.
*The requirements regarding the practical component of the C(k)P® Designation are waived for professionals who are not financial advisors. The practical prerequisite may also consider the application of work experience and demonstration of the core competencies.