New membership journey and brand revealed

13th June 2016

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Neil Tytler

On 13 June, IEMA switched on its revised membership structure, including a totally new grade, and fresh branding.

This ‘new age of IEMA’ comes after an in-depth consultation with members, which began in 2013. Members said they wanted the institute to adapt to make membership more meaningful and rewarding, and that IEMA should become far more recognisable and bold in its approach.

By working with members, employers and training partners, IEMA has created a new structure for its membership. The major changes include making Graduate membership a professionally recognised level and a new Practitioner grade, which bridges the gap between the revised Associate and Full membership.

IEMA chief executive Tim Balcon described the new membership levels as a ‘journey’ for practitioners throughout their careers: ‘This is a huge milestone for IEMA. We’ve taken the hugely valuable feedback given by members and a lot of other interested bodies, and used it to break the mould of what professional bodies traditionally offer. Members’ careers are far more about a constant moving journey of learning and development and we have taken the time to ensure each step along the way is rewarding and relevant for that time in their lives. I’m really excited that we can now share the outcome of this work with members.’

Now the new look memberships are in place, this means:

  • More members can join at Student and Affiliate grade, aiding IEMA’s future growth.
  • Graduate members can now use the new GradIEMA suffix.
  • The 8,000-plus Associate members can transition to the new Practitioner (PIEMA) level, a standard that better reflects their roles and experience.

The new membership standards for Graduate, Associate and Practitioner are in force, and the standards for Full and Fellow are being finalised to be implemented later this year. New training courses and assessments are to be rolled out over the next few months to help new members achieve Associate or Practitioner membership.

New online look

At the same time as the revised membership structure was launched, a new logo and website was switched on.

The new look has been developed to reflect the feedback provided by members about the need to be clear, recognisable and bold, and mirrors IEMA’s vision of transforming the world to sustainability. It is underpinned by three core values – bright, open and brave. These elements signify how IEMA should look, feel, sound, act and think. They encapsulate all that members said they wanted IEMA to become, and ensures the institute conveys the energy, passion and collaborative nature of the environment and sustainability profession.

The logo is bold and represents connections and impact. A key feature of the new look is a continuing ‘horizon line’, referencing possibility, optimism and the future. The clean white brand uses bold black type and is punctuated with pops of bright colours throughout. The strong black and white imagery used across IEMA materials and website is of real-life members, taken at an open photoshoot in May. ‘We felt it was absolutely vital to depict real members, to show what the people in our profession look like and the energy they have,’ explained Balcon. ‘We are building a new level of recognition here, not only for IEMA but for the profession as a whole so what better way than to portray the faces of real members and show them working together?’

IEMA believes that the changes introduced on 13 June add up to a powerful proposition that will drive it to achieve its vision. The enhanced relevance and value will support current and future members on their membership journey and the ‘bright, open and brave’ approach will ensure IEMA represents members’ own attitudes.

‘This is about being future-fit and really owning our space,’ said Balcon. ‘Members gave us the right push to do this work and I’m so glad they did. We’ve now put in place everything needed to put us on the right road to transforming the world to sustainability.’

Find out more about the new membership structure and see the refreshed brand on the new-look website at Further details about the revised structure can also be found on p11 and on ppiii–vi of the training supplement inside this month’s copy of the environmentalist.

The IEMA membership journey

Student– a broad horizon

If your studies relate to environment and sustainability IEMA offers a bright vision and tremendous possibility.

IEMA believes there is a practical way to a sustainable future for everyone, and that the environment and sustainability profession has a critical role to play. If you share that ambition for change and are thinking of a career in environment and sustainability we want you to join us and make IEMA part of your learning experience. Student membership puts your studies in a real-world context, connecting you with the people, discoveries and challenges that are defining the sustainability profession today.

Affiliate – stay connected

Affiliate membership gives the wider professional community a way to benefit from the connections IEMA can provide.

Our work resonates far beyond the environment and sustainability profession, and we are here to support everyone who shares our goal of a bright, sustainable future. By becoming an IEMA Affiliate you can tap into a wealth of information and expertise, while connecting your work with the world’s largest network of environment and sustainability professionals.

Graduate (GradIEMA) – leaders of the future

We are already looking to the next generation of sustainability professionals. IEMA is looking to you.

Becoming an IEMA Graduate is a decisive first step towards a transformational role in business. On the way you will encounter new opportunities, deepen your knowledge and build relationships to last a lifetime. You’ll steadily gain recognition and earning potential too. IEMA is ready to guide and support you all the way because, by working together, we have a chance to reset the norms of business and uncover the way to a bright future for everyone.

Associate (AIEMA) – make your mark

There is a whole new world of opportunity for environment and sustainability professionals – and this is your way in.

The drive towards sustainability has opened up new professional avenues across all sectors. If you’re looking to start or make a change in your career and have real working experience to share, Associate membership of IEMA is your gateway into the profession. You do not need a conventional academic background in environment and sustainability. As part of our worldwide community you can quickly access training, support and industry knowledge, while gaining recognition and building your network within the profession.

Practitioner (PIEMA) – taking action

At the heart of IEMA is a community of professional experts working to make the future better.

Practitioner membership makes you part of this community. It recognises everything you’re doing to help make business future-proof while giving you practical support. We can help you deliver on your sustainability goals, with information and tools to put you ahead on ideas and innovation. You can also receive training to increase your knowledge and skills. You can expect to build your influence and connect with others like you across IEMA, as part of the Practitioner community.

Full Member (MIEMA) – the power to influence

Lead change in your organisation – with the full force of IEMA behind you.

Full membership of IEMA is the gold standard for environment and sustainability professionals who are setting agendas and leading initiatives within their organisations. If you are working to turn a sustainability vision into action IEMA is with you. And as part of the worldwide community of IEMA Full members, you can expect to build a more influential network, accelerate your career and enhance your earning potential.

Fellow (FIEMA) – a new kind of leader

Join a new generation of ambassadors for sustainability – leaders who are challenging the norms and transforming the world.

The nature of leadership is changing: leaders increasingly need a strong sustainability record, while sustainability professionals are expected to step up and lead. IEMA Fellow is the definitive mark of these new advocates for change. Becoming a Fellow will put you at the forefront of our network of sustainability professionals – the largest and most established in the world. You will join a powerful alliance of ambassadors at the top of their profession, equipping you to live IEMA’s vision and lead to your full potential.


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