Frequently Asked Questions about Accreditation
Why should my AMC become accredited?
There are two major reasons. First, accreditation demonstrates to existing and prospective clients that your AMC is able to deliver professional services at an extremely high standard. With more than 500 AMCs worldwide, AMC Institute accreditation separates your AMC from the mainstream. Second, accreditation provides your firm with a defined set of "best practices" around which you can develop your company's important policies and procedures. Why invent your own criteria when you can stand on the shoulders of others?
What are the major differences between AMC Institute's accreditation program and accreditation programs from other organizations?
The AMC Institute accreditation is unique because it is based on an AMC Standard developed under the guidelines established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). AMC Institute was approved by ANSI as the official AMC Standard Developer. Another significant difference is that each AMC is independently audited.
What is a reasonable time estimate for an AMC considering accreditation?
This depends on the state of your firm's practices and how adequately your policies are documented when you begin the accreditation process. The size of your firm does not matter as much as how well and complete your current operating policies and procedures are documented. A small AMC may have an advantage over a large firm because policies and procedures are typically less complicated. Based on the size of your company, your resources and the current status of your documentation, this process could take as little as one week and as long as six months.
What's a good estimate of the fee(s) for an AMC to become accredited?
Total first year fees are estimated to cost your AMC between $1,900 and $6,400. This estimate consists of three elements: 1) a $1,400 accreditation fee (members) or $2,800 (non-members) made payable to AMC Institute, and 2) a project review fee paid directly to an independent reviewer (an accounting firm or independent CPA). This fee typically ranges between $500 and $3,500. Independent reviewer fees will also vary by location.
Is there an annual fee associated with AMC Institute accreditation?
The accreditation fee is spread over four years. For members – $1400 the first year and $550 each subsequent year. For non-members which includes provisional members the fees are $2800.00 the first year and $1100.00 each subsequent year.
What happens if an AMC doesn't qualify on the first try?
During the review process, the CPA reviewing your materials may note deficiencies. Before the reviewers finalize their report, your company may opt to address these deficiencies and request a reassessment of those areas. Typically, any deficiencies can be handled and addressed enabling your AMC to pass the review. If, however, your reviewer does not pass your company, you may either take the next six months to make changes and corrections and then reapply or you may follow the appeal procedures and appeal your reviewer's findings.
How long does the AMC Institute accreditation last?
AMC Institute accreditation lasts for four years. At the completion of the fourth year, the review process must be repeated which involves the use of an independent reviewer such as an accounting firm or independent CPA just like the first time you went through the process.
What are some of the tangible benefits of AMC Institute accreditation?
Tangible benefits include use of the AMC Institute accreditation logo, special recognition within AMC Institute's online RFP process, press release to media in your own town announcing your accreditation and constant media exposure resulting from AMC Institute's marketing and PR efforts. Some accredited firms also report that the process of becoming accredited by itself gave them a handle on their businesses like they never had before.
What's the ROI of AMC Institute accreditation?
An investment of $1,900 to $6,400 for AMC Institute accreditation will pay dividends over time when taking into account the amount of exposure received as well as the perception of separation between an accredited AMC and its non-accredited competition. It only takes one contract renewal, one add-on service or one new piece of business to justify the expense.