Aspiring accounting professionals will have the opportunity to use an apprenticeship path to pursue a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) designation under a program that will be launched early next year by the AICPA.
The U.S. Department of Labor has approved the program, which is called the Registered Apprenticeship Program for Finance Business Partners. The program is built on the rigorous Finance Leadership Program for CGMA candidates in the United States.
The program requires a four-year college degree and is designed to provide benefits to students, employers, and universities. Candidates will be able to earn a paycheck while they learn and benefit from exposure to more career development and mentoring opportunities.
During the apprenticeship, a candidate will work with their employer and receive mentorship while putting into action on the job the competencies taught in the Finance Leadership Program. The candidate will receive a wage while learning on the job, and the employer will verify that the application of the competencies has occurred in the workplace.
Employers can benefit from a new way to train and hire people for finance jobs that can be difficult to fill because of a lack of skilled workers. Apprenticeship programs can help employers broaden their talent pool, improve recruiting and retention, and boost productivity. Employers can apply for select tax incentives when hiring apprentices.
Meanwhile, universities can benefit as apprenticeships bridge the gap between academia and practice and can help colleges and universities place students in jobs by the time they graduate.
"The time is right for a Registered Apprenticeship for Finance Business Partners, as the profession looks to develop new skills and competencies and broaden its talent pool," Tom Hood, CPA/CITP, CGMA, said in a news release. "With the market demanding the essential competencies reflected in the CGMA designation, the program fills a critical need for both employers and aspiring management accountants."
— Ken Tysiac (Kenneth.Tysiac@aicpa-cima.com) is the JofA's editorial director.