ACCA vs CIMA is a question we are asked all the time at FI. In this article we compare the key differences between the two qualifications to help you make an informed decision on which is best for you. There is no one-size-fits all, so it’s important to pick the qualification that will help you reach the specific career goals you have in mind.
ACCA vs CIMA: Key Differences
The ACCA qualification will be more focused around technical accounting knowledge enabling the skills needed to work internationally for companies who use International Financial Reporting Standards to report company financial activities to third parties.
CIMA is a specialist management accounting qualification focusing on management accounting, financial strategy & risk management – overall business activity and strategy.
Both qualifications are similar in terms of professional work experience, study time and costs for study and admission to membership. You will be required to have undertaken three years in a relevant role, as well as approximately three years of study to complete the exams. Costs are also similar for training, membership/study fees and exam fees.
Life after membership also has the same commitment with the requirement to complete Continuing Professional Development (CPD). The parameters around CPD are slightly different for each membership, however both involve development that will allow you to remain professionally competent in any given role within the profession.