Certification levels & entry criteria

NZPPA’s Certification Framework

NZPPA certification levels can only be awarded if the payroll practitioner can show through the assessment process that they have fully completed the requirements of any previous certification level before they can progress to a higher level of certification.

NZPPA Certification levels:

  • Certified Payroll Technician (Entry Level) - CPT
  • Certified Payroll Practitioner (Intermediate Level) - CPP
  • Certified Payroll Consultant (Advance Level) - CPC
  • Certified Payroll Manager (Leadership of Payroll) – CPM

Please Note: NZPPA Certification is not based on position title as title cannot determine payroll skills, knowledge and experience.

Certification caters for different payroll environments

Certification levels are not based on a payroll position title it is based on payroll skills, knowledge and experience. Payroll practitioners depending on the type of payroll environment may do some if not all payroll tasks but at different levels of complexity and NZPPA certification takes this into account.

For instance: a sole charge Payroll Officer may manage a complex payroll and cover all the requirements that a Payroll Manager may have responsibility for in a payroll team (minus the leadership of team members).

NZPPA Certification Levels

Certification Type


Certification Level

Certification description

Certified Payroll Technician



Can run basic payroll processing steps, under supervision or within their prescribed authority.

Certified Payroll Practitioner



Can run a payroll end to end to an intermediate level under supervision or within their prescribed authority*.

Certified Payroll Consultant



Can implement, configure, payroll processes and payroll system criteria and resolve complex payroll issues*.

Certified Payroll Manager



Meets all the requirements set the previous certification levels (CPT, CPP and CPC) and leads and manages staff in a payroll environment.

*Covers all certification requirements from the previous