CMA vs CPA

The CMA/CFM credentials differ significantly from the CPA designation, and the decision to pursue one over the other depends entirely on one’s career goals. For a career in public accounting, the CPA designation is appropriate – and required by state law. However, more than 80% of accounting professionals in the U.S. work inside organizations, building quality financial practices into the organization through decision support, planning, and control over the organization’s value-creating operations. For these managerial finance and accounting professionals – who represent the majority of the profession – the appropriate certification is the CMA/CFM.

CMA/CFM

Credentials:
  • International recognition
  • Targeted to corporate financial professionals
  • Broad-based, industry-related content
Knowledge-Based Professional:
  •  Preparer/user of accounting information
  • Concept-based
  • “Inside” corporate professionals
  • Higher-quality, lower cost “beans”
  • “Player”

CPA

Designation:
  • Limited to U.S.; a state designation
  • Targeted to public accounting
  • Content for public practice
Skill-Based Professional:
  •  Auditor of accounting information
  • Rule-based
  • Public practice licensure
  • Attesting to the accuracy of the “beans”
  • “Referee”
CMA vs CPA