Everything You Need To Know About CIMA Qualification

Are you one of those who have heard about the “CIMA qualification” but still aren’t sure what it is and why it is so valued?

Or are you someone who is stuck with “I want to pursue a career in accounting, finance or business” but not sure what to do and which step will be the right one?

Let me take that burden off you and tell you that you are finally in the right place now. CIMA is indeed a globally recognized and reputed qualification and is the best course to do for anyone with a passion for finance and business.

But wait, it’s not that easy. Nothing is when it comes to finance. CIMA has multiple levels and courses that you can do. And each course has its own merits and career opportunities.

This blog will explain everything you need to know about CIMA qualification, from course details to career choices and benefits. Let’s go!

Why study a CIMA Course?

Well, apart from being globally recognized, the CIMA qualification has a syllabus that combines business skills and techniques which are needed in every organization related to accounting, finance, and management. It is hands down the most relevant qualification for a career in finance and business.

CIMA qualification bridges the skills gap of newly qualified finance professionals. The reason you should be interested in doing this course is it will help you get job-ready and teach you skills that will take you several steps ahead of your competitors. 

CIMA teaches you multiple essential skills related to business and accounting and not just the finance part. So if you want to master several skills, CIMA is for you! Here are some more reasons for you to pursue CIMA qualification:

  • The unique learning structure of this program helps individuals to learn necessary skills instead of just theoretical knowledge.
  • It trains students to deal with strategic and risk management-related issues from a business perspective.
  • Students study management accountancy as a specialized field that adds greater credibility in the eyes of prospective employers.
  • Gives students management skills along with accounting capabilities which widen their career scope

What to know IMS Proschool’s CIMA Syllabus

What Are The CIMA Certifications Equivalent To?

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) offers two major certifications:

CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting (Cert BA)

The CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting teaches core business skills beyond simple financial accounting. Students with little or no accounting experience can easily learn the necessary business and finance skills through CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting. This certificate is equivalent to an associate degree in Accounting.

CIMA Professional Qualification (CGMA) 

This qualification is recognized as the most relevant global finance qualification for business. This qualification is equivalent to a master’s degree in Accounting. This course is for qualified finance professionals who are looking to upskill their business skills while gaining practical knowledge of the industry.

The Different CIMA Qualifications

The four main CIMA qualifications are:

1. CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting

The CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting covers fundamental business and finance skills. This certificate is for those students who do not have any official training or experience in finance or accounting. This CIMA certificate is also an entry point for the CIMA Professional Qualification. 

This CIMA Certificate training course covers four topic areas:

  1. BA1: Fundamentals of Business Economics: Will also look into the economic and operating context of business, exploring how government economic policy, competition, and financial markets can influence an organization.
  2. BA2: Fundamentals of Management Accounting: Explains how Management Accounting fits within the commercial and public sector and explores the position of a Management Accountant within a business. 
  3. BA3: Fundamentals of Financial Accounting: Will show you how to prepare financial statements for single entities, equip you with an understanding of legislation and accounting standards, as well as teach you how to apply necessary controls for accounting systems and how to measure financial performance.
  4. BA4: Fundamentals of Ethics, Corporate Governance, and Business Law: Focuses on teaching you the professional standards needed to benefit stakeholders, covering ethical conflict, the role of corporate governance and social responsibility, as well as the legal and administrative framework surrounding commercial activities. 

2. CIMA Professional Qualification Operational Level (E1, P1, F1)

This is the first part of your CIMA Professional Qualification. This course teaches business and finance skills that are needed to run a business successfully. From learning how to make the right short-term decisions to using them to your advantage and forming actionable plans, this course teaches you all these necessary skills and more.

This CIMA Professional Qualification Operational Level course covers three topic areas:

  1. M1: Managing Finance in a digital world
  2. P1: Management Accounting
  3. F1: Finance Reporting


3. CIMA Professional Qualification Management Level (E2, P2, F2)

The CIMA Professional Qualification Management Level is the second part of the CIMA Professional Qualification. This part focuses on teaching how to make long-term decisions, how to plan them and turn them into medium-term plans, how to manage individual and organizational performance using data and technology, and so on.

This CIMA Professional Qualification Management Level course covers three topic areas:

  1. M2: Managing Performance
  2. P2: Advanced Management Accounting
  3. F2: Advanced Financial Reporting



4. CIMA Professional Qualification Strategic Level (E3, P3, F3)

The CIMA Professional Qualification Strategic Level is the third and final part of the CIMA Professional Qualification. This part focuses on teaching you how to plan strategically for the long term and how to evaluate and manage risks.

This CIMA Professional Qualification Strategic Level course covers three topic areas:

  1. M3: Strategic Management
  2. P3: Risk Management
  3. F3: Financial Strategy

CIMA Qualification Criteria

For Certificate in Business Accounting:

You do not need any special qualifications to enroll for a Certificate in Business Accounting. You can enroll for this certificate after passing your 12th. If you have an interest in Maths and English, then that’s enough. To pass this exam, you’ll need to get 100 out of 150 in their objective tests. 

For CIMA Professional Qualification:

This CIMA certificate is divided into three parts: Operations, management, and Strategy, which covers three major pillars: enterprise, management, and financial. Each part has got all three pillars at different levels. 

To enroll for the CIMA Professional Qualification, students have to clear the Certificate in Business Accounting. The students then give a total of 9 objective tests (1 test for each pillar on each level) for 90 minutes (150 questions) each. Students also have to give a 3-hour-long case study exam.

CIMA Qualification: Fee Structure

Students will have to pay a one-time registration fee and an annual subscription fee for this course. However, if a student does not pass an exam on the first attempt, then he/she may have to pay additional fees for the second attempt.

What do you earn (Expected Salary)

Students with CIMA qualifications work as Management accountants and manage a team.

Below are the job roles you can achieve after each level: 

CIMA Certificate:

  • Accounts Assistant: INR 22,00,000* 

CIMA Operational level:

  • Junior Financial Analyst: INR 22,73,000*
  • Financial Analyst: INR 39,14,000*

CIMA Management level:

  • Business Analyst: INR 41,30,000*
  • Financial Accountant: INR 43,57,000* 

CIMA Strategic level:

  • Financial Manager: INR 50,06,00*
  • Financial Controller: INR 65,57,000*

 (Source: Glassdoor Salary Checker)

Have any queries About CIMA Qualification



CIMA qualifications can help you advance your finance career and get you started. These qualifications will open doors to more senior positions and can also potentially boost your earnings. However, CIMA is also one of the toughest exams to crack and has a vast syllabus that needs to be taught properly and by the experts themselves.

IMS ProSchool has been in the field of teaching finance and business courses since 1977. We have been awarded as the best learning institution by the CIMA itself. From skill training to 1:1 mentorship for qualified CIMA professionals, we provide our students with the best learning facility. 

Are you prepared to begin your accounting career?