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QUALIFICATIONS
IN DETAIL

Delivering much more than just accounting knowledge

We work to ensure our qualifications remain relevant and the learning experience of candidates match the real world of business. We have worked closer than ever before with employers around the world to make sure our qualifications deliver confident and competent employees and is fit for purpose.

Explore the diagram below to find out more about our qualifications and understand the route to becoming a CGMA with CIMA.

The support provided by the firm's CIMA trainees has led to a 70% increase in leads generated. Our CIMA people bring a range of unique skills that we can take to the clients’ doorstep. Our CIMA people are really intuitive - they do not have a predefined view of models - they see the broader content but grounded in fact.

Sivarama Krishnan, Partner, Risk Advisory Services, PwC India

JOURNEY TO CGMA WITH CIMA

Certificate in Business Accounting (Cert BA)

The CIMA Cert BA elevates people and businesses to success by developing skills and unlocking talent.

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The CIMA Professional Qualification

A CGMA looks beyond the numbers to inform the strategy of the business. The qualification is designed to cover not just finance but also a range of other business areas.

Read more

Practical Experience Requirements (PER)

PER is an essential part of the CIMA qualification and becoming a CGMA.

Read more


CGMA

On completion of the CIMA qualification and once the PER are met and membership application approved, then candidates become a CIMA member and CGMA designation holder.

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Certificate in Business Accounting (Cert BA)

Overview

The CIMA Cert BA elevates people and businesses to success by developing skills and unlocking talent. It is the first step towards unleashing true business potential and an entry route to becoming a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA®). Teaching core business and finance skills beyond simple financial accounting.

Students will be trained to make informed decisions and gain a complete, forward-thinking perspective of your organisation. They’ll gain added mobility and adaptability across your business.

Download the CIMA student brochure

Benefits

At the Cert BA level, CIMA people can:

  • Identify and control costs
  • Prepare budget statements, financial statements and integrated accounts
  • Apply forecasting techniques and use spreadsheets to calculate data
  • Use break-even analysis in making short-term decisions
  • Understand how competitors, economic policy and the behaviour of financial markets can influence your business.
Download the CIMA Cert BA syllabus brochure

Job roles

This qualification produces highly skilled finance business leaders, equipped to drive innovation, sustainability and profitability in your organisation. It teaches junior finance professionals the knowledge and skills needed to undertake core accounting functions, such as preparing financial reports, forecasting performance and data analysis to support cash flow and balancing the books. It also provides a solid understanding of economics, management accounting and business principles including ethics.

Download the CIMA Cert BA syllabus brochure

People types

The CIMA Cert BA is suitable for anybody needing basic business accountancy skills, including those who work closely with finance such as your marketing, IT and operations teams. The qualification is especially useful for employees in small businesses, but is excellent preparation for working in larger organisations. Studying the Cert BA is a mandatory element of some graduate schemes.

Download the CIMA Cert BA syllabus brochure

Key resources

To find out more about how the CIMA Cert BA can help your business, take a look at our key employer resources.

  • CIMA Cert BA video: This short animation gives you some insight into the updated Cert BA (2017)
  • CIMA Cert BA syllabus brochure
  • CGMA Competency Framework: an outline of the skills and competencies management accountants need in order to add value to businesses. The framework demonstrates the relevance and value of a CGMA as a trusted finance and business strategist.

The CIMA Professional Qualification

Overview

A CGMA looks beyond the numbers to inform the strategy of the business. The qualification is designed to cover not just finance but also a range of other business areas.

The CIMA Professional Qualification comprises nine separate subjects that are organised in three pillars and three levels. This is an outline of what will be covered throughout the qualification:

Operational level
Considers implementation of short-term decision-making, mirroring the work undertaken by first-line managers and their teams.

Management/Gateway level
Considers analysis, ensuring successful performance. This is in the context of the medium-term, and reflects work undertaken by middle managers.

Strategic level
Takes into account long-term strategic decisions, and the provision of resources to implement these decisions successfully. This is generally undertaken by senior management.

Download the CIMA student brochure

Benefits

At Operational level, CIMA people can:

  • Implement strategy
  • Report on implementation of strategy
  • Prepare financial statements
  • Provide management accounting information
  • Use appropriate tools for short-term decision making
  • Deal with risk and uncertainty
  • Understand the fundamentals of financial reporting and taxation, including management of working capital, cash and sources of short-term finance.

They will be able to understand:

  • The role of finance within the wider organisation
  • Who the stakeholders are
  • The regulatory environment
  • How to communicate with non-financial staff.
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Job roles

Operational level is heavily focused on core accounting and finance skills (including taxation), but it also begins to cover the development of business acumen and people skills through the study of organisations.

It considers implementation of short-term decision making, mirroring the work undertaken by first line managers.

At Operational level, their role will be that of a Finance Officer. Equivalent job titles might be:

  • Junior/Trainee accountant
  • Credit Controller
  • Assistant accountant
  • Cost accountant
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

People types

A typical Operational level CIMA student will be performing well in a general junior finance role, with a focus on short-term tasks and results like processing transactions and producing reports. Their role will likely involve purchase to pay, order to cash and record to report processes.

Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Key resources

To find out more about how CIMA students at Operational level can help your business, take a look at our key employer resources.

Benefits

At Management/Gateway level, CIMA people can:

  • Monitor implementation of strategy
  • Ensure corrective action is taking where necessary
  • Prepare group accounts
  • Make pricing and product decisions
  • Manage projects and relationships
  • Use appropriate tools for long-term decision making
  • Understand advanced elements of financial reporting like sources of long-term finance and analysis of financial performance and position.
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Job roles

This second level studies project and relationship management, advanced management accounting and advanced financial reporting. There is also a strong focus on developing commercial, people and leadership skills.

This level considers analysis in the context of the medium-term, reflecting work undertaken by middle managers.

At Management/Gateway level, their role will be that of a Finance Manager. Equivalent job titles might be:

  • Management Accountant
  • Financial Controller
  • Financial Analyst
  • Head of Finance
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

People types

At this level, a typical student is working in a managerial or supervisory role and can supervise others and resolve most issues. Specialist knowledge has been acquired through on-the-job training and continuing professional development.

Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Key resources

To find out more about how a CIMA student at Management/Gateway level can help your business, take a look at our key employer resources.

Benefits

At Strategic level, CIMA people can:

  • Make strategic decisions
  • Provide overall context for effective implementation of strategy
  • Formulate financial strategy
  • Manage strategic relationships
  • Identify, classify and evaluate risk
  • Manage risk associated with cash flow and capital investment decisions
  • Understand the role of information systems within organisational strategy.
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Job roles

This final stage of becoming a CGMA examines financial and organisational strategy and risk management. Completion, if accompanied by the relevant professional experience, leads to the CGMA designation.

At Strategic level, their role will be that of a Senior Finance Manager. Equivalent job titles might be:

  • Senior Management Accountant
  • Group Accountant
  • Financial Director
Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

People types

In a senior management role, this person has the experience and expertise to handle complex matters with confidence and can lead teams to work on difficult matters. There is formal line management responsibility and accountability for management decision.

Download the CIMA Professional Qualification syllabus brochure

Key resources

To find out more about how a CGMA can help your business, take a look at our key employer resources.

  • CIMA Professional Qualification brochure
  • CGMA.org: Drive best business practices with tools, reports, checklists, and real-world case studies
  • CGMA Magazine: The destination for the latest global news and updates for CGMAs. It’s a source for management accounting news, in-depth analysis of key business issues and best practices for management accountants
  • CGMA Competency Framework: An outline of the skills and competencies management accountants need in order to add value to the businesses for. The framework demonstrates the relevance and value of a CGMA as a trusted finance and business strategist
  • The Global Management Accounting Principles: a practical framework to improve decision making and drive value. By using the Principles your organisation will have better insight, more relevance, improved analysis and increased levels of trust
  • The AICPA | CIMA Competency and Learning website: The professional learning and development website for CGMA designation holders which further enhances their career development. The learning content is organised around competency frameworks that focus on technical, business, people and leadership skills.

Practical Experience Requirements

Overview

PER is an essential part of the CIMA qualification and becoming a CGMA. It complements assessments and demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge and skills in the context of their professional experience. In order to become CGMA, your employees will need a minimum of three years' verified relevant work-based practical experience. Visit the website to find out more about the PER process and gaining the CGMA designation.

Download the PER brochure

CGMA

Overview

On completion of the CIMA qualification and once the Practical Experience Requirements (PER) are met and membership application approved, then candidates become a CIMA member and CGMA designation holder. Only then are they entitled to use the letters ACMA, CGMA after their name.

Having the CGMA designation letters proves that they are trusted finance professionals with the skills needed to meet global business needs around the world. They combine financial expertise and business insight and have a globally recognised skill set that helps them attain career success and can drive strong performance in your business.

Find out more about the value CGMAs bring to business.

Value of a CGMA

Key resources

  • CGMA.org: Drive best business practices with tools, reports, checklists, and real-world case studies
  • CGMA Magazine: The destination for the latest global news and updates for CGMAs. It’s a source for management accounting news, in-depth analysis of key business issues and best practices for management accountants
  • The Global Management Accounting Principles: A practical framework to improve decision making and drive value. By using the Principles your organisation will have better insight, more relevance, improved analysis and increased levels of trust.
  • The AICPA | CIMA Competency and Learning website: The professional learning and development website for CGMA designation holders which further enhances their career development. The learning content is organised around competency frameworks that focus on technical, business, people and leadership skills.
  • Recruitment

    Recruiting CIMA students and CGMAs means you're hiring people with skills that go beyond finance, are kept up to date and can be applied across your business.

  • Support your students

    Support your CIMA students on their pathway to becoming CGMAs by providing them with the relevant information they need to pass their exams.

  • Supporting your CGMAs

    Lifelong learning is key for CIMA members, see how you can support your CGMAs through their continued learning and development.