When I was an undergraduate my sights were set on becoming a CPA. There are advantages to having a Bachelor’s in Accounting,but there are many more advantages to obtaining a CPA.
Those advantages are: greater monetary benefits, faster career development, job security, and a level of self-respect that comes from being certified. Many people are unaware that there are levels of certification beyond the CPA.
If you want to further qualify yourself beyond the CPA you have two options:
CMA (Certified Management Accountant)
The CMA is a way to get certified beyond what the CPA can offer. Whereas the CPA is typically tailored for a more individual, isolated occupation, the CMA is a way to show that you are fit for the role of financial management. It is not a state accredited, but globally accredited. The position is more geared for accountants or business professionals looking to at a more corporate finance or accounting occupation.
You do not have to have a CPA to obtain the CMA. You do however, need a Bachelors degree to sit for the exam.
Studies show that those with a CMA earn annually $34,000 more than their peers without the certification.
To learn more about the CMA, go Here
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst)
The CFA is a way to further build your own personal brand with the goal of earning more money, and ensuring job security. While the CMA is tailored for more of a financial management role, the CFA focuses on investment. It is a great way to establish yourself as both an accounting and finance expert.
The CFA is the hardest to obtain of the two. The test is more extensive and covers a wider range of subjects.
But the reward is well worth the difficulty. Studies show that those with CFA’s increase their salary by more than those with the CMA.
To learn more about the CFA go here.
It is important to remember that each of the exams cost money and time. In order to know whether or not the acquisition of either certification will benefit you, you need to calculate the cost in both money and time.
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