CFA, MBA, ACA, ACCA or CIMA - which will get you a job that pays?

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Which popular finance qualification is most likely to get you a job in financial services now? And more pointedly - which one will get you a job that pays well? The answer appears to be: none of them, for certain, and the odds of getting a job with a particular qualification are declining.

We looked at the number of candidates with a selection of accounting and other qualifications who've uploaded CVs to our global database over the past three months. We then compared this to the number of jobs requiring those qualifications on the jobs section of the site, and to the results we got from a similar process seven months ago.

Conclusion: You might want to study the ACA accounting qualification run by the UK's ICAEW. Globally, there are 'just' five candidates with an ACA chasing each accounting job right now. For every qualification, however, the number of live candidates chasing live roles is increasing.

The ACA doesn't really play in New York - or in Asia - most of the ACA jobs are (unsurprisingly) focused in London.

If you want to work internationally, it still helps to do a CFA or an MBA, although our analysis suggests demand for each qualification varies substantially across top global finance cities, as follows. Moreover, the number of qualified candidates chasing relevant jobs in each city is increasing.

Based upon the average pay for jobs requiring each qualification in London, the MBA looks by far the most lucrative. Then again, an MBA qualification is also the most expensive. - With a top MBA costing $168k in fees and living expenses, you might want to take the CFA (costing around $1k per qualification), instead.

Photo credit:Powered Up by Brian Turner is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

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