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FAQs IMI Accreditation Technical, Customer-Facing and Management-Competence

These FAQs cover information on the following IMI Accreditations:

Technical | Customer-Facing | Management-Competence.

There is a separate document covering common queries for IMI Accreditation Management-Knowledge.

What is IMI Accreditation?

  • IMI Accreditation is used to demonstrate your current competence in your occupational role. It is based on industry-agreed standards and is available for technical, customer-facing and management disciplines. All accredited individuals are included on the IMI Professional Register.

How is IMI Accreditation achieved and where can I take it?

  • Technical accreditations are achieved through both practical and knowledge assessments. They can only be completed through the network of IMI approved centres. You can find your nearest approved centre at www.theimi.org.uk/awarding > Qualifications > IMI Accreditation > Select a route > Enter your postcode
  • Customer-Facing accreditations are achieved through knowledge and practical assessments. Practical assessments include role plays and scenario activities. You can find your nearest approved centre at www.theimi.org.uk/awarding > Qualifications > IMI Accreditation > Select a route > Enter your postcode
  • Management-competence accreditations are achieved through practical and knowledge assessments which could include, observations, professional discussion, online knowledge test, real-life business improvement examples. It can be achieved through external provision, at an IMI Accreditation Approved Assessment Centre, or via internal provision through IMI Accredited assessors.

What is the difference between a nationally recognised qualification and IMI Accreditation?

  • Qualifications are developed to Government-approved frameworks that are regulated by official bodies, such as OfQual and SQA
  • Accreditations are developed by IMI, in partnership with the industry, to sector-agreed standards providing proof of competence. Accreditations are time-bound to 3 years and also bound by a ‘code of conduct’.

I have got a national qualification already (e.g. City & Guilds, apprenticeship, NVQ)

  • A qualification is seen as a proof of learning which may have been achieved many years ago. IMI Accreditation is all about proving current competence at a specific time and then keeping up-to-date. Keeping up-to-date is often called “Continuing Professional Development” or CPD.

How would I know if I, or my staff, could pass the assessment process without training?

  • Individuals that are highly skilled and have kept up to date via CPD could probably achieve without training, but using the self-assessment tool on the IMI website and talking to IMI approved centres would be advisable prior to the assessment process.

Who approves an assessment centre for the delivery of IMI Accreditation? 

  • The IMI’s awarding organisation, which is government regulated, approves the assessment centres to ensure they meet the requirements to provide consistent, high quality assessments to the candidates. The awarding organisation will continually monitor the assessment centres to ensure that they continue to meet the requirements of IMI Accreditation.

Are there any pre-requisites for entry to the IMI Accreditation assessments?

  • There are no pre-requites for entry however, the IMI provides the assessment centre with the criteria, advice and guidance for each route and level. This allows the assessment centre to advise the candidate of the most appropriate level to be assessed at.
  • For all technical, customer-facing and management disciplines, individuals must have sufficient experience in the area they are being assessed on.

What if I feel nervous about using the equipment at the IMI Approved Centre?

  • It is quite normal to feel nervous on any assessment, ideally speak to the IMI centre staff and agree some awareness training if necessary prior to the assessment. The centre will advise on which equipment that you could use during an assessment. For technical routes you could take your own small items of test equipment with you, providing they meet the assessment centre’s health and safety requirements and are correctly calibrated (certificates may be asked for).

What can I do if I disagree with an assessment decision?

  • The individual has the right to appeal against any assessment decision that is made. The appeals process should be highlighted at the beginning of the assessment day. If it isn’t, please contact the IMI directly. If you should have a complaint, it is important to follow the correct appeals procedure, which is available from the IMI.

What does signing the code of conduct mean?

  • By signing the IMI code of conduct, you agree to act professionally and ethically on behalf of the industry, your employer and its customers. It also means that you will keep your skills up-to-date through Continuing Professional Development (CPD). The code of conduct is available on the IMI website and will be explained in detail on the assessment day. Signing the code of conduct is a mandatory requirement.  

What happens if I am referred (fail)?

  • If a candidate is referred on any of the assessments (practical or knowledge) then the centre must provide the candidate with relevant feedback. The feedback is important as this will highlight the necessary up skilling to allow the candidate to receive training in the right area.

Where can I go for the training?

  • The choice is yours. The IMI Approved Assessment Centre may offer training (at extra cost) but if not available, it’s up to the individual where they seek the required up-skilling. The advantage of using an IMI centre for up-skilling or training is that they fully understand the assessment process.

What recognition will be received for IMI Accreditation?

  • Technical, Customer-Facing and Management-Competence Accreditation achievers receive an ID card and certificate when they have successfully completed their accreditation
  • The individual will automatically be listed on the IMI Professional Register, together with their employer, which is accessible by the consumer.

How long does an Accreditation last for?

  • Once achieved, IMI Accreditation remains valid for a 3 year period, which can be renewed through a number of options, these are; full assessment or where available, the modular options over the validity period of the accreditation.

Can the IMI Accreditation be removed?

  • Yes. An individual could have their accreditation revoked if it is proven that they have knowingly broken the code of conduct. Any breach of the code is investigated by the IMI and if upheld, sanctions may be applied to the individual concerned. This could result in expulsion from the IMI Professional Register.

How is IMI Accreditation developed?

  • In order to ensure that the assessment meets the industry requirements and standards, IMI undertakes in-depth research, steering groups, expert working groups and consult with industry before they are available for use.  

Will the skills required change during the three year period?

  • Probably yes, each accreditation is updated periodically to reflect changes in technology, legislation, equipment. The individual will need to complete Continuing Professional Development (CPD) i.e. training and development throughout the 3 year period of their accreditation; this will keep them update with the latest industry developments that are measured by the accreditation.


What is the cost of taking an IMI Accreditation?

  • IMI Accreditation assessment centres set the cost for the accreditation assessments and this will vary. This will depend on factors such as:
    • consumable costs
    • type of assessment required
    • duration of assessment day(s)
    • number of candidates on the day
    • agreements between IMI centre and employer / individual

For information on centre fees, click here www.imiawards.org.uk/Centres/Fees-and-Charges. 


What is the IMI Professional Register?

  • The IMI Professional Register is a register of verified motor industry professionals which is searchable by the consumer. It helps to raise consumer confidence in the automotive industry; ensuring customers are confident in finding businesses that employ skilled, competent and trustworthy individuals.

What is the difference between CPD and AOM?

  • Assessed Outcome Modules (AOMs) are the basis for all accreditations, as they form the structure for achieving all routes. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is seen as learning that enrich knowledge and enables individuals to keep up-to-date with industry developments and remain competent in their area of specialism. CPD does not necessarily include assessment.


What are the options for re-accreditation?

  • Full assessment, available 6 months prior to the expiry date of the accreditation
  • Where available, achieve the identified IMI Accreditation Assessed Outcome Modules (AOM) over the IMI Accreditation 3 year validity period

How do I reach the next accreditation level?

  • If the individual holds an IMI Accreditation, there is only one option to reach the next level and that is to complete a full assessment at the next level.
Wendy Hennessy

+44 (0) 1992 511521