14 May 2020, Dublin – The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) has delivered its first-ever at-home exams to students in Ireland – this is a first amongst professional bodies in the accounting sector in the country. This comes as the coronavirus outbreak forced test centres to close around the world back in March, halting the studies of CIMA students and their progression towards earning the Chartered Global Management Accountant® (CGMA) designation.
With many schools, universities and professional accounting bodies postponing or cancelling exams because of the pandemic, CIMA looked at the best options to keep students engaged. This is why in late March the Institute took the decision to move CIMA exams to at-home testing, giving its students an alternative path towards gaining their professional qualification. CIMA members and students have a great and invaluable skillset to offer businesses, and will play an essential role in devising new business strategies to drive recovery.
Ciaran Phelan, Head of CIMA Ireland, said: “The road ahead will of course be difficult but management accountants can really put their skills to use to help their organisations, and showcase how much value they bring to businesses. We are proud of the great resilience our students are showing to keep their careers moving, and steadily grow the pool of finance professionals able to help organisations navigate even the most uncertain and complex times.”
He continued: “Our colleagues and partners worked hard to come up with and deliver an at-home testing solution for our students in a very short amount of time. This change in our approach has so far enabled students from over 70 countries to progress their studies, book their CIMA exams and get them closer to earning the CGMA designation.”
Danyal Siddiqi, CIMA Student and Finance Business Partner at AIB, said: “This was my first time doing an exam at home, so I was naturally curious about how the whole process was going to work. Beforehand I read the guidance about what to expect on exam day and how communications with the invigilator were going to work. The exam went very smoothly, the whole process from check-in until the end of the exam was great, and the invigilators were fantastic as well. I can understand some students may be wary of doing an exam remotely but this is a great initiative being offered by CIMA and if your personal circumstances allow for it, then you should definitely consider using this opportunity.”
Shane Clune, CIMA Student and Consulting Associate at PwC Ireland, said: “In the end the exam was rather grand, and the experience was essentially the exact same as the exams I have done in the exam centre. The system ran well and I was able to log on easily, take photos of where I was doing the exam using my phone, and start the exam within a relatively short space of time. It's great that we have the facility to do these exams and can use the time we now have on our hands to be productive. CIMA have been great to facilitate this, and I would definitely recommend taking advantage of it.”