Name: Rana Ahmed
Occupation: Governance Risk and Assurance Advisor
Organisation: Shell Egypt
CIMA Entry Route: Operational Level
CIMA Level/Award achieved so far: Adv Dip MA
How has CIMA added value to you and your career so far?
CIMA provided me with relevant well-rounded knowledge with which I can confidently pursue a successful career as a finance professional
Are you studying CIMA with tuition support or self-study and why?
Tuition support – it helps give me discipline in scheduling study and structure to how I go about my study plan. It also provides useful exam techniques and practice questions
What skills/competencies have you gained or developed so far from studying CIMA?
Knowledge of accounting standards relevant to the tasks and deliverables for which I am responsible. An appreciation of the importance of financial controls, knowledge of good corporate governance and sustainability reporting. A well-rounded view of strategic management
Can you give a practical job based example from day to day in which you have used CIMA skills in the workplace?
The P3 revolves around risk management, and so this paper came in handy when I took on the Governance, Risk and Assurance advisory role, Revenue recognition standards and principles were useful during business plan cycles, where assumptions are being set. Intergroup transactions and financial statement consolidation in F2 helped me better understand the reasoning behind the related tasks I was performing.
What have you found most challenging when studying CIMA and how have you tried to overcome that challenge?
Finding a slot in my day when I can study with full focus. Juggling work, study and maintaining a social life can be tricky and during a normal working day, by the time I am done with work, I usually am almost mentally drained. Thus finding the enthusiasm and willingness to dedicate an hour or two to study on these days is an everyday challenge.
What usually kept me going is developing a study plan. As long as I knew what I needed to get done, and by when, I used to motivate myself by focusing on the end goal; usually promising myself a treat when I meet a certain milestone
Why did you choose CIMA as your financial qualification instead of another?
CIMA is the one of the preferred qualifications for finance professionals at my work
What advice would you give to other aspiring students who are considering CIMA?
Something which is inspirational and powerful. All along the way, try to link what you’re studying to your role or to real life industry examples so as to get the full value from the study, not just a certification on the wall/initials on your business card