“The financial services credentialing world is terribly opaque. Most designations in our industry are not designed to convey competence in a field or practice, but rather to reward completion of an educational course of study,” Sean Walters, IMCA CEO.
Denver, CO (PRWEB) July 18, 2014
Investment Management Consultants Association® (IMCA®) announces that the American National Standards Institute® (ANSI®) has continued accreditation under ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024:2012 for the Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®) certification program.
In 2011, IMCA met the requirements for CIMA to become the first financial services credential in the United States to be accredited by ANSI. The ANSI Personnel Certification Accreditation Committee recently took the action based on the 2014 on-site surveillance and notified IMCA of the continuation.
“The financial services credentialing world is terribly opaque. Most designations in our industry are not designed to convey competence in a field or practice, but rather to reward completion of an educational course of study,” said Sean Walters, IMCA Chief Executive Officer. “By seeking, earning and now renewing ANSI accreditation of the CIMA program, we are positioning IMCA as part of the solution rather than an additive to the problem.”
An independent 2014 study of more than 1,200 investors conducted with input from IMCA through Advisor Impact found 62 percent of investors believe it is important or critical that their financial advisor maintain voluntary certifications. And 72 percent of clients believe it is of critical or high importance that the credentialing body that certified their advisor is audited and accredited by an objective third-party.
IMCA was granted continued accreditation after being evaluated by ANSI on a range of activities set forth in ANSI’s standard. In particular, IMCA has, among other things, successfully demonstrated that CIMA certification policies are open and transparent. IMCA demonstrated sound management systems and a process that consistently distinguishes those who meet a level of competency and skills as an investment management professional from those who do not.
“What makes the ANSI standard different than other accreditation standards for personnel certifiers, is that in addition to annual reports, an on-site audit is performed after three years to ensure that IMCA continues to meet accreditation standards,” Walters said. “No other credential in financial services has been through this rigorous process.”
ANSI is a private, non-profit organization that oversees standards development and accreditation activities in the United States. That includes development of voluntary consensus standards for products, services, processes, systems, and personnel and accreditation of standards developed by standard setting organizations, government agencies, consumer groups, companies, and others. ANSI also accredits organizations that carry out product or personnel certification in accordance with international standards. ANSI is the official U.S. representative to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
Government agencies, organizations and individuals are increasingly turning to ANSI accreditation for validation of certification programs and to help reduce fraud and misuse in certain industries. Accredited certifications contribute to the integrity, confidence and mobility of certified professionals.
CIMA candidates must successfully demonstrate three years’ acceptable experience in financial services and pass a 50-question qualification exam before they are eligible to attend and complete the education portion of the program, currently offered in conjunction with Carnegie Mellon University, The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. The final step in the certification process is to pass a 100-question, comprehensive certification examination in order to attain the designation.
Certifications, unlike degrees or educational designations, must be renewed periodically. IMCA requires continuing education (CE) to help maintain and update certificants’ competence. All CIMA certificants are responsible for completing and reporting 40 hours of CE), which includes a minimum of two ethics hours, every two years.
Established in 1985, IMCA is a nonprofit professional association and credentialing organization with more than 9,400 individual members. IMCA members collectively manage more than $1.9 trillion, providing investment consulting and wealth management services to individual and institutional clients. Since 1988, IMCA has offered the Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®) certification, which earned accreditation by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) in April 2011, making it the first financial services credential in the United States to meet international standards (ISO 17024) for personnel certification. IMCA’s Certified Private Wealth Advisor® (CPWA®) certification is suited for wealth management professionals working with high-net-worth clients. In 2013, IMCA conferences and workshops hosted more than 4,000 attendees.
IMCA® and Investment Management Consultants Association® are registered trademarks of Investment Management Consultants Association Inc. CIMA®, Certified Investment Management Analyst®, CIMC®, CPWA®, and Certified Private Wealth Advisor® are registered certification marks of Investment Management Consultants Association Inc. Investment Management Consultants Association Inc. does not discriminate in educational opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law.