ICMA Announces Launch of Virtual Commercial Card Industry Training

PRINCETON JUNCTION, N.J.July 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The International Card Manufacturers Association (ICMA) announced today the expansion of its Advanced Card Education (ACE) program by launching a new virtual training series, with the first module offered being ACE-Commercial, which is designed to teach sales, marketing and customer service personnel the fundamentals of card manufacturing. The one-day, four-hour virtual trainings will take place on:

  • Wednesday, July 29 at 10:30 a.m. New York14:30 GMT
  • Tuesday, September 29 at 8:00 a.m. New York12:00 GMT
  • Wednesday, October 21 at 8:30 p.m. New York (Thursday, October 22 12:30 a.m. GMT)
  • Wednesday, November 18 at 10:30 a.m. New York14:30 GMT

Taught by David Tushie, ICMA’s standards and technical representative, the ACE-Commercial training will cover the production of secure and nonsecure cards, and it will address common customer service and sales obstacles, as well as answer commonly asked questions about card products. There are no prerequisites to participate in ACE-Commercial, and upon completion, participants will receive a certificate of achievement.

“ACE-Commercial was designed to provide industry personnel with a comprehensive overview of the major components of the card manufacturing business,” said Jeffrey Barnhart, executive director and founder of ICMA. “As the card manufacturing and personalization industry continues to evolve, the goal of ICMA’s virtual training program is to provide employees in customer-facing roles with high-level card industry education without the need to enroll in certification-level curriculum.”

ACE-Commercial is also recommended for suppliers and consultants who want to gain a deeper understanding of opportunities for growth in the card industry, as well as the challenges experienced by card providers.

In addition to ACE-Commercial, ICMA’s cutting-edge ACE program also includes three stand-alone designations—ACE-M, ACE-P and ACE-A—all designed to keep ICMA members at the forefront of the card industry.

  • ACE-M focuses on PVC/plastics, inks, adhesives, printing, collation, lamination, die-cutting and standards/testing.
  • ACE-P delves into printing and barcodes, magnetic stripe encoding, embossing, laser engraving, smart card encoding, financial transaction card data and fulfillment and standards/testing.
  • ACE-A reviews card technologies in advanced materials and card construction, security technologies and environmental initiatives.

ACE-Commercial is only open to current ICMA member companies. The cost to attend the training is $249 per attendee or $210 per attendee if part of a group of five or more from the same organization. Private company trainings are also available at a reduced rate for groups of 10 or more. The private training includes a bonus Q&A session with the trainer.

To register for ACE-Commercial, visit icma.com.

Invaluable Networking and Industry Connection 
Since 1990, the annual ICMA Card Manufacturing & Personalization EXPO has served as the world’s only manufacturing-focused global card conference and exhibition. A global meeting of leading card industry professionals, the EXPO is replete with information sharing and networking opportunities.

Geared to prepare attendees for the changing future of the card industry, presentations feature valuable insight on trends and new technologies, as well as market forecasts. EXPOs regularly feature more than 50 exhibitors, made up of global industry leaders who manufacture and supply materials and services to the card manufacturing and personalization industry.

In addition to its annual EXPO, ICMA offers its members two other important events through the year. CardTREX North America and CardTREX Europe are geographic-specific conferences that focus on regional trends, challenges, opportunities and emerging technologies for card manufacturers, personalizers and suppliers. Each one-and-a-half days long, the conferences are geared to technical and production staff, as well as executives and business owners in the transaction card industry. The conferences also feature tours of local members’ plants.

Throughout the year, ICMA hosts live webcasts featuring expert tips from card manufacturers, personalizers and issuers about the card industry. Webcasts are archived and members may access them on ICMA’s website. Sample topics include, “European Card Market Statistics,” “Card Security: Ink Solutions and Trends in Security Features” and “Effectively Designing and Introducing New Trends in Card Design.”

Cutting-Edge Training, Education
ICMA maintains several industry-leading training and education programs about card manufacturing. These include the Advanced Card Education (ACE) program, which provides information on key areas of the industry, as well as online tutorials and webinars on specific topics from card industry experts and leading industry suppliers.

The ACE program is the global standard of recognition for advanced knowledge of the card manufacturing industry. There is a certification level curriculum and designations offered in manufacturing, personalization and advanced technologies. The newest addition to the program is a virtual training series, which will offer education to various segments of member companies. The ACE program is designed to offer companies an edge in an intensely competitive field. As the demand for experts grows, continual training and expertise is crucial for individuals—and companies—to stay ahead of the crowd.

ICMA continues to invest in education for its members, keeping them knowledgeable and current on new innovations in the marketplace.

  • CITE
    The Card Industry Training & Education (CITE) program provides a basic overview of the industry, it’s history and manufacturing processes. It provides a basic education for individuals new to the card industry or who otherwise want a better understanding of the industry. The self-led online course covers general card manufacturing, personalization and applications.

    Key sections of the CITE curriculum include card history, card markets, industry scope, card product categories, card manufacturing, materials, components, card-based financial transactions, industry trade associations, basic concepts of card personalization, data recording technologies, machine-readable recording technologies and the card personalization process. There are self-tests at the end of each section. 

  • Card Manufacturing Magazine
    Published six times a year globally, Card Manufacturing is the flagship publication of ICMA. The magazine outlines industry news and trends, member news, product releases, standards updates and member/ACE spotlights.

  • Technical Standards Reports
    ICMA officially participates in two major standards organizations, the International Standards Organization (ISO) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). An ICMA representative attends ANSI and ISO meetings, offering card manufacturing and personalization perspectives to the standard-making bodies and providing guidance to members about forthcoming changes to standards. 

    ICMA maintains representation on both of these committees through its official standards representative, David Tushie of Magellan Consulting. Tushie is at the forefront of current and emerging standards for all types of cards and related devices.

    ICMA maintains a library of reports published by Tushie detailing outcomes of ISO and ANSI meetings from 2011 to present that impact the card manufacturing process.

  • Global Market and Personalization Statistics Reports
    ICMA publishes two annual reports that analyze the industry and assess the industry’s present environment and future. Designed to assist ICMA member companies with strategic planning, the reports are segmented by global views, industry verticals and geographic regions and they cover trends in manufacturing, personalization, and fulfillment statistics. The reports are free to members.

About ICMA

Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2020, ICMA is a nonprofit association of card manufacturers, personalizers, suppliers and related industry participants. With 205 members globally, ICMA acts as a resource for industry issues, including the production, technology, application, security and environmental issues of cards. More information is available at icma.com.