April 4, 2019 at 7:42 am #2303712AbbyParticipant
Hi everyone, I am hoping for some advice from people who actually understand the difficulty of this exam. I try talking to my spouse but he doesn't truly understand. Anyway, back in college I received a scholarship to take the CMA exam with all costs included even the exam study material. The IMA provides Wiley and I find it a good tool for studying. I have previously taken both part 1 and part 2 of the exam and I only came close on part 2. Now I have until September to pass both parts of the exam and my scholarship stipulates that for my first retake I can pay half price which is $200 for each so $400. I have always wanted to be a CMA, CPA and since I have not passed any of the CPA exams my clock is not ticking yet. However, my employers want me to finish the CPA and have been waiting for me to do so since I graduated in 2017. I have this May-June testing window and September to study and pass both parts of the CMA. I thought it would be smart to get the CMA out of the way then start studying again for the CPA.
Can anyone tell me if I am wasting my time with the CMA? I know it is just a certification but I want those added initials behind my name.April 4, 2019 at 4:08 pm #2304861alloveritParticipant
What field are you in currently? What are your long-term career goals?April 4, 2019 at 6:03 pm #2305131B4BeanCounterParticipant
@Abby – I'm going for it so I can remain competitive. There are already enough people with CPAs. I got the same Wiley CMA review course at no cost, so why not? But since you haven't passed your CPA exam yet, I'd recommend you get that out of the way first as CPA will always be the gold standard regardless of whether you're going into public accounting or industry.April 5, 2019 at 7:38 am #2306715Jimmy DuganParticipant
I think it's a good credential but it won't ever be looked at in the same light as the CPA. If it were me, I'd focus on the CPA first.April 5, 2019 at 8:07 am #2306802AbbyParticipant
I am currently working in public accounting. However, the stress and crazy hours of tax season are starting to get to me. This is my fourth busy season. My long-term career goals are probably to just be a manager in private accounting. My predicament is that I cannot get the CPA out of the way first because my CMA scholarship expires in September 2019 so I have to focus on that if I don't want my free review course to lapse. I am still unsure what to do.April 5, 2019 at 10:07 am #2307057alloveritParticipant
Well that makes sense. As I'm sure you're already aware, the CMA has no value in public accounting. In fact, even if you passed it I'm not sure you would actually have the certification…just a passing test score.
Still, it is a valuable industry certification, and I believe the IMA will let you hold onto a passing score for some time until you actually meet the requirements to be called a CMA.
I might suggest you NOT make a decision right now in the heat of tax season. I haven't had a day off since February 9th and I doubt you've had any many (if any) either. I always find that public accounting is fairly pleasant for 9-10 months out of the year and a living hell the rest of the time.
Other posters have indicated that the CPA is the gold standard, etc. and that is currently true. However, as @B4Beancounter pointed out, there are a lot of CPAs.
In the end, the CPA is probably the better goal to obtain first as your current employer is behind you on it so to speak. But after the CPA, perhaps the CMA could come in handy…I've even thought about it myself.
Best of luck to youJuly 5, 2019 at 12:30 am #2532021NoNameParticipant
I agree with Jimmy Dugan
I had initially started studying for the CMA but I felt it was taking quite a lot of time so I switched to the CPA (which is now passed) because it has much more recognition and is the gold standard. Everything else is pretty much icing on the cake unless you are already a chartered accountant (UK, India, etc) or something of that nature.
Once licensed, I do plan to go back to the CMA which will probably be in the next few months. I feel that having both the CPA and CMA shows you are a well rounded individual (with more demonstrated knowledge of cost accounting and finance topics).
The CMA reminds of me an expanded version of the BEC exam which delves into many of the same topics but at much greater depth.