The CNP Exam

The Certified Nonprofit Credential (CNP) is a great way to take your service experience and tangibly show potential employers, regardless of industry, that your skillset as a future employee is far greater than your peers. In addition, those who complete the program will join a network of more than 11,000 CNPs around the world.

The CNP Exam is for working professionals and alumni of service organizations with nonprofit experience. Traditionally, it takes 3 to 6 months to earn the credential, but if you meet the requirements below, you can apply to take the exam. Good luck! 

Prerequisites to Earn the CNP Credential


The table below identifies the minimum requirements for the Certified Nonprofit Professional Credential. 

Additional Requirements 


Volunteer Leadership Experience

All those who earn the CNP credential are required to document that they have participated in at least one volunteer leadership/service activity during the past five years. Below are the activities that meet this requirement.

National Conference Participation 

All CNPs are required to attend a national conference within the past 24 months. The multi-day conference should provide CNP competency-related professional development, opportunities to network with peers and subject matter experts, and coverage of national issues of importance to the social sector. If you have not attended a conference that meets this requirement, you may attend the virtual conference, Elevate.

Completing the CNP Credential


After successful completion of all the requirements, you will receive a digital badge and the option to print an e-certificate of the CNP credential. The badge may be shared on LinkedIn and other social media. The Alliance’s Digital Recognition Program is powered by Acclaim.