Careers Has CFA helped your career?

Has CFA helped your career?

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    • fp92
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      Hey guys, L2 candidate having a little mental crisis here, hope you can all can share your experience…

      Got a little discouraged looking at the amount of material for L2 (and I thought L1 was HARD). And started to doubt myself (quite a bit). 

      From your experience (especially charterholders), any stories to share on whether CFA helped (or not) in your career progression? Would love to hear what you were doing, and whether progressing through the levels helped in your career objectives.

      Thanks!

    • genetemp
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      My take: hard to tell, but probably yes.

      I’m L2 at the moment and have put my candidacy in my CV. Am getting interviews and mentioning it in interviews, but is it helping? No idea. But I think it is a good extra to have and I would have less to talk about in an interview otherwise. Not just about the qualification itself, I also use knowledge learnt from the program in interviews and case studies.

    • fp92
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      Thanks for the sharing the story @genetemp – I get that it’s hard to tell, but good to know it seems to be an extra oomph to the CV for most candidates/charterholders. Some motivation has returned…  😀

    • Sophie Macon
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      @fp92 – for me (again anecdotal evidence of course), it seemed to start to have an impact the moment I put my CFA candidacy level in my CV during interviews (more so as L2 candidate than L1, but again that may be due to increased experience etc). Occasionally it does pop up as a conversation point, which nicely gives me the opportunity to briefly summarise what CFA teaches us (that is relevant for the role I’m interviewing for). If you plan to stay in finance-related roles (not audit focused), it should be useful at least in setting you apart. 

    • edg94
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      I’m in FoF – my colleagues don’t really seem to care, but it does help with client-facing aspects. 

    • fp92
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      Thanks @edg94, why do you think it matters to your clients?

    • perambulator
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      It’d better help – right now it’s detrimental! Aside from the extra time it takes to prepare for the exam, my staffer is diverting me away from some good projects because he thinks I’m taking on too much. *facepalm*

    • artyeasel
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      It’d better help – right now it’s detrimental! Aside from the extra time it takes to prepare for the exam, my staffer is diverting me away from some good projects because he thinks I’m taking on too much. *facepalm*

      Your staffer sounds like an asshat. I don’t think anyone should expect to have a bias AGAINST them because they’re a candidate.

    • svengali
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      I think it helps me, and probably most other candidates, in a very simple but not very obvious way.

      Before the CFA exams, my weekends were less focused – sitting in bed watching movies, deciding what to do and where to go for the weekends, etc. With the CFA exams, my weekends are now just focused on improving myself by increasing my financial knowledge.

      I think a lot of people focus on whether CFA ‘helps your career’ or whether it gets you a job. Obviously I would love all those benefits, but I think there is also an important hidden point. It helps simply by focusing your spare time on self-improvement at a time where I need that focus! No matter what the outcome, I don’t think it will be time wasted.

    • rutadaniel
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      I think there’s a lot of personal benefit gained from having investment knowledge. So many of my friends, all high-flyers in banking, are shit at managing their own money. A lot of it is also due to not having the time or focus to allocate their assets, but it’s shocking how little finance guys know about managing their own money. Personal finance and institutional finance can be quite different.

      For example, I’m currently experimenting with algorithmic bitcoin trading. While I have the technical know-how to code up trading strategies, the CBOK gives me background to inform my decisions and strategies.

    • Analyst0719
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      Recruiters really saw my charter as a plus. I got my first six figure job due to the charter, and the next one afterwards.

    • fabian
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      @Analyst0719 what job are you in? I gotta get on that career path…

    • Analyst0719
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      The job I moved to was a corporate finance manager job for a private equity firm.

    • fabian
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      I think rarity plays a part too – i.e. if a charterholder is rare among your competition in interviews. Was that the case?

      Just some background, I’m a charterholder as well – in a cushy job but looking to move, as I’ve been in this job 10 years already!

    • Analyst0719
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      Ya, for me it was the case. But then again, I have a very diverse background working in various different industries and different roles.

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