Going Virtual with Sandra Little

Sandra LittleSandra K. Little already had a lot on her plate in 2020. She was starting the second year of her term as the president of the RIMS Arizona Central Chapter and also successfully interviewed for an exciting new risk position. To top it all off, she began studying for the RIMS-CRMP certification exam. Little shared how passing the exam in July was especially vindicating and offered advice for future exam-takers.


RIMS: What inspired you to take the RIMS-CRMP?

Sandra Little: I had considered taking the RIMS-CRMP almost from the beginning. However, I felt unprepared. I did not know what knowledge base was needed in order to successfully take and pass the exam. I also understood that a computer learning program was available to support preparation. I felt that this was an opportunity I could not pass up. Additionally, since I am the president of my chapter, I felt that it was important that I lead by example. Now I am in a position to encourage and challenge my community to go for the certification.


RIMS: You took the entire course virtually. What was that experience like for you?

Little: I began studying in March 2020. I used the computer-based prep course offered through RIMS. I thought the virtual experience was very well done. It was easy to understand, easy to navigate, easy to go back and forth to continue to review. I liked it very much. It was not my first online course, but it was one of the better ones.


RIMS: How do you feel the RIMS-CRMP will impact your career?

Little: While it has no impact for my prior employers, I have recently accepted a new position and my new co-workers are very excited to have someone of my skill level join their team. I believe the certification adds substantial credibility and support for my personal and professional endeavors. Additionally, it has boosted my personal self-esteem and is one of my top three personal achievements!


RIMS:  What do you believe are some of the career benefits for RIMS-CRMP holders?

Little: The RIMS-CRMP is certainly great for professional advancement being ANSI accredited and globally recognized. I believe that as the certification becomes more well-known and desirable, it will become even more coveted by employers, and worth more in salary and benefits.

Additionally, I feel that by working for the certification and achieving all of the criteria, holders of the certification join a special group of like-minded professionals who are available to support each other and to be resources for each other and the profession’s next generation.


RIMS: What advice do you have for future RIMS-CRMP exam takers—particularly for those who will take it virtually? 

Little: I discovered after taking the exam that much of the knowledge base was gained through experience and education including through other forums. Some other advice I can pass on:

  1. Utilize solid test-taking strategies. Answer what you know, go back and answer what you think you know, then answer what you don’t know. Manage your time effectively. Think about what the question is actually asking, then select the answer.
  2. Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself and reach for the stars. If you need more information, look up a RIMS-CRMP holder and talk with them about their experience. Seek mentors and learn. Engage in all that our discipline has to offer: education, resources, relationships.
  3. Always remember you are better, smarter, and stronger than you know. The best way for you to see that is by challenging yourself to achieve. We are here to support you in your efforts.


Interview by Justin Smulison, RIMS Business Content Manager