There comes a point in your life where you have to invest in yourself first. The CFA course is one such asset that can lead to huge dividends.
In time, the certification even appreciates in value. If you put in the effort to achieve your goals, you will reap huge rewards.
Let’s keep the investment-centric puns aside and move on to the facts. The CFA qualification leads to a thriving career in a competitive and uncertain industry. It prepares you to work in a challenging, fast-paced environment. It gives you the expertise and skills that help you rise to the top of your profession. End of the day, a CFA certification gives you the tools you need to back yourself.
A closer look at the CFA course
What started as a unified investment-related program in 1962 grew to become one of the foremost financial credentials in the world. The CFA institute created the chartered financial analyst designation to fill a growing need for quality professionals within a complex and demanding industry. Today, the organization boasts more than 130,000 members in 150 countries.
It is a powerhouse certification backed by a comprehensive yet precise syllabus. It covers relevant subjects such as portfolio management, wealth planning and asset valuation. Once you have passed all the requirements, you are qualified to take on various responsibilities as a chartered financial analyst.
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Top 5 benefits of becoming a CFA professional
1. A CFA mention on your resume is a mark of prestige
Any recruiter from an investment firm will recognize the value of your qualification. It puts your name at the top of the shortlist and gives you a significant edge over your peers who lack the same education. Your certificate proves you have put in tremendous hard work and effort to be in the investment services industry. The CFA course enjoys a stellar reputation and instant recognition among all sections of the financial world.
2. The curriculum is intelligently designed
Most recruiters expect new employees to take some time to learn on the job. However, a CFA course gives you a firm hold on the knowledge and skills you need to succeed. You have a tight grasp of the concepts and the expertise to apply your knowledge in the real world. There is a shallow learning curve. So you are ready for whatever your job may throw at you.
3 The CFA is the global benchmark in investment and financial services
Countries like Australia, the USA, Singapore, Canada and Germany are just a few out of over 150 nations that recognise the CFA course. MNCs, financial firms and wealth management companies in these countries are always ready to hire chartered analysts. So if you are looking for migration opportunities, the CFA could be your ticket to settling abroad. Even in India, many MNCs and global financial organisations look for CFA hires as they trust the program to deliver a consistent calibre of professionals.
4. The CFA charter increases networking potential
Once you become a charter holder, you are a part of a growing elite group of people. On the last count, there are CFA societies in over 70 countries. They post job openings and positions for CFAs. You also get the inside track to the latest developments and financial information. Your newfound networking opportunities and industry connections can help you propel your career to great heights.
5. Leads to better jobs and salaries
A CFA certificate helps to fast-track your investment career.
ICICI bank, Deloitte, PWC, Tata and Aditya Sun Life are a few of the top firms in India that prefer CFA-certified employees. Your enhanced resume makes you eligible to work in many roles within some of the largest organisations. As you bring clear value to the table, it also helps you attract a larger salary package.
5 job profiles after completing the CFA course
As a certified financial analyst, you will work with clients and investors to make informed fiscal decisions. You use your knowledge and skills to create successful portfolios, manage assets and provide other relevant services. Your CFA designation allows you several options to pursue, such as:
1. Portfolio manager
According to the CFA institute, many students become portfolio managers. If you are one of them, your primary job will be to help clients make sound investment decisions. You build their portfolios, figure out a suitable plan of action and evaluate the performance of the assets. Some of your responsibilities are:
- Manage the client’s financial assets, such as mutual funds, debt, stocks, etc.
- Create strategies that offer a good return on the investment
- Work with companies on tax returns or raising capital
- Analyse risk management and minimise any potential threats
- Make predictions based on market trends
Average salary: Rs 10 lakhs a year
2. Research analyst
Research plays a critical role in investment services. Many CFA students interested in studying financial information on a deeper level often end up in this department either as credit analysts or equity analysts. The responsibilities are as follows:
- To investigate investment opportunities and evaluate data
- Make recommendations to portfolio managers, companies and clients
- Perform data analysis using the latest technology and tools
- Provide solutions to financial problems or challenges
- Make predictions based on the findings
Average salary: Rs 6.5 lakhs a year
3. Risk analyst
Companies need risk analysts or managers to monitor investments and protect them from sudden catastrophes. As a risk analyst, you will set up measures to prevent a financial loss from happening. Your responsibilities include:
- Studying the market and evaluating the contributing risk factors that may affect the investments
- Using the Risk Information Management Software (RIMS) to analyse financial information
- Making reports about the potential risks and presenting them to the clients, company executives or shareholders
- Staying updated on market trends and new techniques that help monitor risks
Average salary: Rs 9.5 lakhs a year
4. Wealth manager
As a CFA holder, you are well qualified to work in wealth management. Your job is to handle the assets and investments of high-profile investors as per their specific requirements. Some of your responsibilities are to:
- Work in close relationships with affluent clients and understand their exact needs
- Create portfolios and implement wealth-building strategies
- Advise clients about estate planning, retirement planning and taxes
- Be aware of the risks, market fluctuations and other potential issues that may hinder portfolio management
Average salary: Rs 9 lakhs a year
5. Relationship manager
If you possess good communication skills, a keen understanding of financial products and a CFA certification, you could work with a retail bank or an investment advisory firm. Your responsibilities are:
- Maintaining good relationships with clients
- Addressing their concerns and questions about their financial details
- Creating strategies to preserve customer loyalty while increasing the client base
- Being knowledgeable about the latest financial products and services
Average salary: Rs 5 lakhs a year
The IMS Proschool CFA program
Many investment professionals have started their journey with IMS Proschool. The institute is known for its high quality of education, having trained thousands of students over the years. Their CFA course is highly recommended, as it uses innovative teaching techniques and intensive skill learning methods to create world-class chartered financial analysts. Here are some of the CFA course details:
- Experienced faculty members who have the expertise to guide and mentor each student
- Excellent study resources that include updated material, video recordings, over 2,000 practice papers and a revision course to help you with the CFA exam
- Over 170 hours of classroom training
- Alternatively, you can learn through live and interactive online sessions
- Regular testing to ensure you are grasping the study material
- The institute gets you ready for many CFA jobs
The CFA certification is universally acknowledged as one of the best in the world. Once you complete all three levels and receive your charter, you benefit from various job opportunities within the investment industry. Your training allows you to work in several profiles and positions. It also ensures you rapidly move up the corporate ladder and take on more leadership roles in due time. So, are you ready to invest in your future?
Click here to know more about The CFA program @ IMS Proschool