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Top 7 Finance Certifications to Pursue a Career in Finance
Nowadays, it is important to obtain relevant certifications to increase your employability, enhance your career prospects, and help you establish your chosen career path. Henceforth, there is a wide range of professional finance certifications.
In this article, we will explore the best finance certification courses for fresh graduates and working professionals.
Top Finance Certification Courses
If you are considering a career as a finance professional or are already working as one, pursuing a finance certification can increase your capability to deliver high-quality financial analysis and other duties. Here are the top finance certifications you can pursue.
A Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification is one of the most sought-after finance certifications. Finance professionals can purse this course, especially who have passed the CFA exam conducted by the CFA Institute.
Besides being a financial analyst, you can also become an independent financial advisor. The scope of CFA certification covers sectors such as banking, industries, financial markets and information technology (IT).
The certificate programme’s curriculum includes subjects like quantitative methods, economics, financial reporting and analysis, corporate finance, portfolio management, and investment analysis.
What Are The Benefits Of Taking CFA Certification?
- CFA certification is globally recognised. It is accepted by major MNCs, international investment firms and even the Big 4 accounting firms.
- This course is ideal for aspirants trying to make a career in asset management, equity research, and portfolio management
- Besides advancing in your existing career, you can also build your portfolio management service
Financial Risk Manager Certification
The Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP) provides the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification. It is divided into FRM Part 1 and FRM part 2. An aspirant needs to clear both exams to be eligible for FRM certification.
- FRM Part 1
This comprises basic risk management topics such as quantitative concepts, derivatives, value at risk (vary), basics of risk management, etc. There are 100 objective questions, including numerical and conceptual problems, without any negative marking for wrong answers.
- FRM Part 2
This includes advanced risk management topics, including credit risk, market risk, operational risk, portfolio and integrated risk management, and current issues. There are 80 objective questions, including numerical and conceptual problems, without any negative marking for the wrong answer.
The certificate course is designed for finance professionals pursuing careers as risk officers, risk analysts, and other positions in risk management.
Note: Candidates who successfully pass both parts and complete a minimum of 24 months of work experience in risk management are offered the FRM charter (professional designation) by GARP. The candidates who pass both exams but do not have the required work experience are not eligible for the FRM charter position.
Here are the benefits of pursuing an FRM certificate course:
- This course helps to boost job prospects as the salary of a risk manager is significantly high. The average salary of the risk managers is 2 Lakhs in India.
- Ideal for aspirants who want to become a risk manager or make a career in risk management
- A certificate in risk management opens the gate to other relevant fields, such as business strategy, and financial leadership, and not just learning how to manage financial losses.
Financial Modelling Certification
Financial modelling certification is a new and popular advanced course for finance professionals. As companies use financial models for effective decision-making, the want for finance professionals who understand financial models is increasing daily. Moreover, businesses extensively use financial models to understand their financial capabilities and position.
The learning programmes’ curriculum covers below topics:
- Valuation modelling that includes understanding integrated financial models, scenario analysis, excel efficiency shortcuts and formulae, cash and interest revolver, building historical financial statements, ratio analysis, projecting financial statements, valuation DCF and Comps are covered in this certification.
- Merger & acquisition (M&A) analysis includes building merger inputs, stock and cash mix deals, contribution analysis, accretion, and dilution.
- Project finance modelling includes understanding date functions, modelling cash flow waterfall and more.
Here are the benefits of the Financial Modelling certificate course:
- You have an in-depth and improved knowledge of the company
- You can predict the cash inflows and outflows of the business appropriately
- You can assist in business growth based on financial models
If you plan to become a financial analyst or take up similar roles, here are some certification courses to expand your expertise.
Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
This certification is for aspirants who want to take financial planning as their profession. CFP is internationally recognised and opens several career opportunities in the finance sector and financial advisory services.
Here are some prerequisites you need to keep in mind before pursuing this course:
- 6,000 hours of professional experience or
- 4,000 hours of apprenticeship experience
- Bachelor’s degree or higher
- Pass a background check.
- Pass the CFP exam.
Maintaining this certification requires paying an annual recertification fee and completing 30 hours of approved continuing education (CE) every two years.
Certified Fund Specialist (CFS)
A CFS helps clients with investments. They buy and sell funds for their clients. The Institute of Business & Finance (IBF) offers this certification course. It can be taken by aspirants planning to become accountants, bankers, brokers, money managers, or financial advisors.
Here are the eligibility criteria for the course:
- Bachelor’s degree or
- 2,000 hours of work experience in the financial services industry
- Complete six modules in the IBF self-study program.
- Pass the CFS exam
Certified Government Financial Manager (CGFM)
This certification is perfect for someone interested in a career as a federal, state, or local financial analyst or manager. The association of government accountants (AGA) offers this course. It covers financial reporting, internal controls, auditing, and accounting for government organisations. The prerequisites include,
- Bachelor’s degree
- At least two years of professional experience in government financial planning
- Pass three CGFM exams
After completing the course, the aspirant must agree to abide by the AGA’s code of ethics.
Certified International Investment Analyst (CIIA)
This certification course’s curriculum covers topics like economics, corporate finance, portfolio management, equity valuation and analysis, fixed income valuation and analysis, derivative valuation and analysis and more. The Association of Certified International Investment Analysts (ACIIA) offers this course. The prerequisites include,
- Three years of professional experience in portfolio management, investment, or financial analysis
- Membership in a participating national or regional society
- Pass all CIIA exams
Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA)
This certificate course is for financial analysts, investment consultants, wealth management professionals and financial planners.
The prerequisites include,
- At least three years of experience
- Complete the CIMA education program.
- Hold a CIMA certificate in business accounting or other relevant qualifications
- Pass a background check
Once the exam is completed, the professional must sign an agreement indicating that they will adhere to the Code of Professional Responsibility set forth by the Investments and Wealth Institute.
Certified Management Accountant (CMA)
Those with this certificate work in corporate accounting. This certification is awarded to candidates with critical accounting and financial management expertise.
The prerequisites include,
- Bachelor’s degree or
- Professional accounting certification
- Two years of work experience
- IMA membership
- Pass both parts of the CMA certification within three years of one another.
To maintain this certification, the professional should have 30 hours of CE credits each year and remain an active Institute of management accountants (IMA) member.
Certified Private Wealth Advisor (CPWA)
This certification is for financial professionals working with private clients to manage their assets. The prerequisites include,
- Bachelor’s degree
- Wealth management certification
- Five years of experience in finance
- Complete the CPWA education course
The Investments and Wealth Institute offer CPWA certification.
There are many finance courses for working professionals available today. These courses equip you with the advanced skills and knowledge required to make a successful career in finance.
Emeritus offers a wide range of courses in finance, such as risk management courses and short-term certification courses in finance. These programmes are offered in association with reputed institutes like IIM, IIT, and ISB.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Enrol In Multiple Finance Certification Courses?
Yes, you can enrol in multiple finance certificate courses simultaneously. However, it is advised to devise an effective strategy to juggle these courses and your other commitments.
Can I Take A Finance Certificate While Doing A Regular Job?
Yes, you can pursue a finance certificate course while working. Many online platforms offer special courses for working professionals.
Which Finance Certifications Course Is The Best?
There are several finance certifications which you can choose as per your requirement.
- Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification
- Certified Public Accountant (CPA) certification
- Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst (FMVA) certification
- Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) designation
- Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation
- Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification
What Are The Most Popular Certificate Courses In Finance?
The top finance certifications include the CPA, CFA, CFP, and FRM. You can choose anyone to enhance your career.