How to register as a Tax Agent in the UAE?

All persons considering becoming a tax agent must refer to the detailed guidance on the criteria required to be met in order to become a tax agent, as well as details of the FTA registration, amendment, linking, and de-linking processes for a tax agent.

Since tax agents play an important role in assisting with the operation of the UAE tax system. To ensure that they are qualified and experienced, a series of measures (including registration requirements) have been put in place.

All of the following conditions must be met before a person applies to be registered as a Tax Agent:

 

1.Hold an accredited qualification from a recognized university or institution showing your specialization and practical experience, i.e.

  • A certified bachelor’s or master’s degree in tax, accounting, or law from recognized educational institution; or
  • A bachelor’s degree in any field plus a tax certification1 from an internationally known tax institution.

2.Have at least three years’ relevant recent experience as:

  • a tax professional
  • a qualified lawyer
  • an accountant

3.Have the ability to communicate orally and in writing in both Arabic and English

4.Have passed any tests to meet qualification standards as these may have been specified by the FTA

5.Be able to prove good conduct and that you have never been convicted of a crime or misdemeanour prejudicial to honour or honesty, notwithstanding that you may have been rehabilitated

6.Be medically fit to perform your duties as a Tax Agent

7.Hold professional indemnity insurance or be covered by one.

If you are interested in attaining a Certified Diploma in VAT for the Middle East region, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to help you achieve it with the support of the industry’s leading taxation trainers.

Information Source: UAE Federal Tax Authority

The Future of Bank Risk Management with FRM

By 2025, risk functions in banks will likely need to be fundamentally different than they are today. As hard as it may be to believe, the next ten years in risk management may be subject to more transformation than the last decade. And unless banks start to act now and prepare for these longer-term changes, they may be overwhelmed by the new requirements and demands they will face.

So, what will the risk function look like in 2025? It is likely to have broader responsibilities, to be very engaged at a strategic level, and to have much stronger, collaborative relationships with other parts of the bank. At the same time, its talent pool will probably have experienced a massive shift in expertise toward better analytics and greater collaboration, and away from operating processes. Most of the latter can reasonably be expected to be automated, real-time, and paperless by then. IT and data will likely be much more sophisticated, often employing big data and complex algorithms. As a result, the risk function may be able to make better risk decisions at lower operating costs while creating superior customer experiences.

The six structural trends that will transform bank and financial risk management over the next ten years:

Trend 1: Continued expansion of the breadth and depth of regulation

The scope of regulation will continue to expand, propelled by four drivers. First, public and hence government tolerance for bank failures has shrunk since the global financial crisis, and the appetite for interventions using taxpayers’ money to save banks has evaporated.

Second, governments are policing illegal and unethical behaviour much more tightly. This has been driven by a general shift of attention toward financial crime, the vanishing tolerance for tax avoidance, and the perceived increased threat of terrorism from individuals and countries since September 11, 2001, attacks in the United States.

Third, governments are increasingly demanding both domestic and global compliance with their regulatory standards. They want “good banks,” not just “good banking practice within their borders.” As a result, laws, and regulations are increasingly applied with extraterritorial effects.
Lastly, we expect the regulation of banks’ behaviour toward their customers to tighten significantly, as the public increasingly expects improved customer treatment and more ethical conduct from banks.

Trend 2: Changing customer expectations

Over the next decade, shifts in customer expectations and technology are expected to cause massive alterations in banking and give it an entirely different profile. By then, widespread technology use is likely to be the norm for customers. The current tech-savvy younger generation will be the major revenue contributor to banks by 2025 because banks make most of their money with customers over 40. Simultaneously, older bank customers are expected to adopt technology at a much higher rate.

Customers will likely expect intuitive experiences, access to services at any time on any device, customized propositions, and instant decisions. To deliver on the customers’ expectations, banks will probably require redesigning the whole organization from a customer-experience perspective and digitizing at scale.

Trend 3: Technology and analytics as a risk muscle

Technology will not only change customer behaviour but also enable new risk-management techniques, often coupled with advanced analytics. The proliferation of new technologies provides cheaper, faster computing power and data storage, which enable better risk decision support and process integration.

Trend 4: Additional (non-financial) risk types are emerging

Although management of financial risks has advanced significantly over the last 20 years, this is not the case for other risk types, particularly nonfinancial ones. The tremendous increase in fines, damages, and legal costs related to operational and compliance risks over the past five years has forced banks to pay much more attention to these risks. This will probably increase even further, due to the regulatory trends discussed earlier and given the expected rise in capital requirements for operational risk.

Trend 5: Better risk decisions through the elimination of biases

Another risk is that of making wrong decisions due to unrecognized biases. Over the last 30 years, enormous strides have been made in understanding how real humans, not the Homo Economicus of traditional economic theory, make economic decisions. We have learned that even when people attempt to approach a problem rationally and diligently, their decisions are often suboptimal, due to various conscious and unconscious biases.

For example, some energy utilities that have to make multibillion-dollar investments that can make or break the company (e.g., building a nuclear-power plant) have completely redesigned their major investment-decision processes. These are very relevant for banks, which make thousands of risk decisions every day; every bias that affects each decision can lead to an incorrect underwriting decision or poor pricing. Not only that, but a cascade effect can set in, with multiple biased decisions having a cumulative effect on the bank’s overall risk levels.

Trend 6: Need for strong cost savings

The banking system has suffered from slow but constant margin decline in most geographies and product categories. Banks have worked very hard and used operational cost improvements to compensate for these declines, resulting in a constant return on equity at the lower end of the long-term average, which is in the upper single digits. While there will probably be substantial regional differences, the downward pressure on margins is expected to continue across all geographies.

As a result of these disruptions, banks will possibly need to rethink their operating costs so they can deliver more value at lower costs. Once banks have exploited traditional and incremental cost-cutting approaches such as zero-based budgeting, value-added analysis (i.e., demand management), and outsourcing, we believe that simplification, standardization, and digitization will likely be the only sizable avenues left for substantial cost savings.

This article is an excerpt from a McKinsey&Company report.

Who is a Tax Agent?

Tax agents in the UAE play an extremely important role in assisting with the operation of the country’s tax system. The concept of a tax agent is to help businesses to be compliant in respect of their tax obligations:

  • A person is allowed to appoint another person(s) as their tax agent(s) to act in their name and on their behalf regarding their tax affairs with the Federal Tax Authority (FTA).
  • A tax agent assists the person in the fulfillment of their tax obligations and the exercise of their associated tax rights.

Tax agents are usually engaged by their clients through the tax agency with which they are associated in order to provide tax-related services which include, but are not limited to:

  • Helping the businesses register with the UAE Federal Tax Authority
  • Preparing and submitting tax returns to the UAE Federal Tax Authority on behalf of the businesses
  • Maintaining tax-related records and/or information
  • Enquiring about tax-related matters with the UAE Federal Tax Authority
  • Submitting requests for reconsideration of decisions issued by the UAE Federal Tax Authority

If you are interested in attaining a Certified Diploma in VAT for the Middle East region, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to help you achieve it with the support of the industry’s leading taxation trainers.

Information Source: UAE Federal Tax Authority

How to prepare a successful CFA study plan

The CFA program requires candidates to pass three separate exams. Each CFA level requires candidates to prepare a lot of material. To be successful, you need to prepare an effective CFA study plan that includes a detailed prep schedule.

Having a study schedule can help you organize your study planner around the topics on which you will be tested. To master these curriculum topics and utilize the time you have we have outlined our recommendations for the CFA Charter and provided you with tips for creating an effective CFA study plan.

Tips For Creating an Effective CFA Study Plan

1. Stick to your CFA study schedule and don’t fall behind.

Once you create your study schedule, be disciplined and stick to it! To provide the motivation to stay on task, take a CFA Program review course and prepare for it like a university course; read the relevant material ahead of time, get at least a big picture of the topics to be covered, and write down any questions you want to ask.

Another great way to stick to your study plan is to form a study group that meets on a regular basis. Studying with others who are facing the same challenge you face provides motivation and support. In addition, being able to ask questions or explain a concept to someone else helps develop your own mastery of the topics. Build the class times and study group meeting times into your schedule, and, once again, stick to it!

2. Prepare, Practice, Perform.

A very useful organizing structure for your plan is based on the three key stages of learning: Prepare, Practice, and Perform. The path to success is to focus on the Learning Outcome Statements (LOS) provided by CFA Institute.

These are performance-based objectives that provide detail on exactly what you are expected to be able to DO on exam day. For example, one LOS might be “Calculate and interpret Net Present Value (NPV).” The command words “calculate” and “interpret” are what you should be able to do correctly.

3. Review regularly.

The material you learn when you begin will not stay with you until exam day if you don’t go back and revisit it once in a while. Plan to spend a few hours each week going back and reviewing material you think you’ve already mastered. Do some CFA practice questions and, if you make any mistakes, dig into those concepts again until you know them.

4. Cover all of the material.

Don’t play the prediction game by guessing which Learning Outcome Statements from the CFA Institute won’t be tested and then ignoring that material. Every LOS is fair game for the exam, and you have to be ready for anything to be tested.

5. Study Ethics and Professional Standards last.

We recommend studying Ethics and Professional Standards after you are comfortable with other CFA topics because preparing for these questions mainly relies on using the ROTE learning method, which is the process of memorizing information based on repetition.

6. Reserve the last month for CFA Mock Exams.

During the last month or so before the exam, begin to take practice and CFA mock exams in realistic settings. Take the exam on your own with no notes, and be sure to block off at least 3 hours to simulate one session. The key is to use the exams to identify how prepared you are by assessing your areas of weakness and addressing them. If you get a question wrong, note whether the issue was the application of your knowledge to the question, or a fundamental lack of understanding of the concept. Keep track of your scores and look for an upward trend…by exam day, you should be scoring above 70% consistently.

7. And finally, reward yourself.

Make a plan to do something fun and relaxing on the day after the exam…golf, hiking, time with family, video games, or simply sleeping. You’ve earned it!

 

If you are interested in joining hands with a leading CFA tuition provider to help make your CFA journey easier, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to offer you the expertise of having helped students to successfully ace their CFA exams for several years with the industry’s leading trainers. If you are looking for CFA training, join us as a student to kickstart your CFA exam preparation.

Career scope in accountancy with ACCA

The ACCA qualification offers you the exciting opportunity to become a member of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants along with the prestige associated with becoming a well-respected and globally acknowledged accountant. The qualification offers expertise in all the key aspects of accountancy and business management along with an employment route and a wealth of opportunities in organizations of every type and size.

The ACCA focuses on the international accounting standards and auditing techniques that are accepted in most countries and regions around the globe and offer candidates the knowledge and skills that are essential in the evaluation of business solutions. The ACCA training for entry level accountants thereby becomes a critical deciding factor when approaching employment opportunities in the accounting industry.

Professional Services

ACCA members are in demand as auditors and accountants, many serve as consultants in specialized fields, advising multinationals on tax strategies, transactional support, corporate recovery, risk management, or forensic accounting, others are entrepreneurs who manage and own their own practices, providing accounting and bookkeeping services to small and medium enterprises and growing businesses.

Commerce, Industry, and Financial Services

Members of the ACCA are involved in serving senior C-level executive roles such as CFOs, financial controllers, and heads of the finance department across a host of sectors and industries. Over the last decade, the ACCA members have also forayed into a wider range of business management roles such as the CEOs or directors of resources as well as other head office functions. Many have also been actively using their rather transferable skills to springboard into entrepreneurial roles and have set up their own businesses.

Not-For-Profit Organizations

The skills and competencies that ACCA candidates acquire and exhibit make them highly sought after by other public bodies and charity organisations. These bodies are ideally keen to have ACCA members on-board so that they can offer their expertise on managing scarce resources effectively and can embed the best practices in financial reporting, systems and strategic decisions associated with procurement.

 

If you are interested in joining hands with an ACCA-approved tuition provider to help make your ACCA journey easier, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to offer you the expertise of having helped students successfully ace their ACCA exams for several years with the industry’s leading trainers. If you are looking for ACCA training in Dubai, join us as a student to kickstart your ACCA exam preparation.

All You Need to Know About the FRM Certification

Where there is a finance enterprise, there is financial risk. Therefore, financial risk management is an essential aspect of running a successful financial firm. It is a skill set that’s in high demand, but what exactly is the financial risk management certification? What does it entail? What kind of careers does it offer? This article tells you everything you need to know, including what it is, the techniques used, what is required, and careers in the field.

What is Financial Risk Management?

Financial risk management is a finance practice that uses financial instruments and data analysis to manage exposure to operational, credit, market, foreign exchange, shape, volatility, liquidity, inflation, business, legal, reputational, sector, and other types of risk. The purpose of this practice is to identify the sources of risk, measure them, and develop plans to address them.

Most major retail, commercial, and investment banks have financial risk management practices or departments. However, as you can imagine, it is not limited to banking. You can find financial risk management at nearly every major asset management firm, hedge fund, consulting firm, and regulator in the world.

In the world of finance, financial risk management is usually applied to four types of risk:

Market Risk

This is the possibility of incurring large losses from adverse changes in financial asset prices, such as stock prices or interest rates.

Credit Risk

This is the risk that borrowers will not repay their debt obligations in full when they are due.

Funding (or liquidity) Risk

This is the risk that a firm cannot obtain the funds necessary to meet its financial obligations, such as short-term loan commitments.

Operational Risk

This is the risk of monetary loss resulting from inadequate or failed internal processes, people, and systems or from external events.

What Are the Requirements for Financial Risk Management?

Here are the requirements for financial risk management, including education, skills, and qualities:

College and Graduate Degrees

A career in this risk field requires a bachelor’s degree, but a graduate degree is preferred, especially an MBA or a doctorate in finance or economics. A Ph.D. in statistics or physics is a viable alternative. Many of those in the field also earn the FRM® designation, a certification offered by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP).

Financial Acumen

Strong financial knowledge is required. Also critical is actual experience working with numbers in a variety of situations, from contract for difference (CFD) trading to translating objective concepts into measurable items.

Analytical and Strategic Mind

Because of all the data involved, anyone who works in the field should be analytical by gathering information, interpreting it, spotting risks and opportunities, and identifying appropriate strategies for managing financial risk.

Technological Capabilities

Anyone in this field should be able to use software and other technological solutions, such as Risk (VaR) to Risk Scenario tools. In addition, it is important to keep up with the latest technological advancements in financial risk management.

Excellent Communication Skills

Those who work in financial risk management must be able to translate complex financial risks, products, and processes into a language the front office, management, and the board can understand. For this to work well, excellent interpersonal and general communication skills are a necessity.

Financial Risk Management Careers

Financial risk management careers are most often found in financial institutions such as banks, financial services companies, brokerages, and asset management firms. However, there are opportunities in other types of business, as well, such as insurance, software, oil and gas, and publishing companies. The following job roles are the most common:

Risk Analyst or Risk Manager

These financial risk professionals use analytical skills and knowledge of international business and currency markets to examine investment portfolios and analyze the risk involved. They project potential losses and recommend ways to limit risk through diversification, currency exchanges, and other investment strategies.

Credit Risk Analyst

These analysts review and assess the financial history of individuals or companies to determine if they are a good candidate for a loan. They evaluate financial data, such as balance sheets and income statements, to determine the level of default risk and calculate financial ratios to help lenders make comparisons.

Market Risk Analyst

These financial risk management practitioners use knowledge of an industry or sector to research market trends and provide companies or investors with a comprehensive market assessment. The company or investor then uses this information to make decisions about investments and future ventures.

Operational Risk Manager

These risk managers investigate how an organization or business is run and identify potential sources of financial, legal, and reputational damage. The goal is to mitigate as much risk as possible and offset financial losses.

Why Consider a Future in Financial Risk Management?

The future is bright in financial risk management. It is a respected profession because financial risk management professionals are critical to the functioning of a business. As a result, the salaries for these positions are promising. According to PayScale , they can be at an average of about AED 244,000 annually. Its popularity as a career is also on the rise. Positions in the field are expected to increase at a rate of 7% over the next decade.

 

If you are interested in joining hands with a training provider to help make your FRM journey easier, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to offer you the expertise of the industry’s leading financial trainers. If you are looking for an FRM training course in Dubai join us as a student to kickstart your FRM exam preparation.

Avoid These Mistakes in CMA Exam Prep

Certified Management Accountant (CMA) is a prestigious and competitive qualification that is highly revered by professionals in the accounting industry. However, with the respect associated with the qualification, there also comes certain anxiety among candidates preparing for it. This provides scope for mistakes to be made by the students, as commonly observed in the performance of CMA exam results, that can often cost them dearly having to pay the price of time, money, and effort.

Read on to find out how you can avoid these pertinent mistakes:

 

Keep track of time

The duration of each part of the CMA exam is 4 hours comprising of 100 multiple-choice questions for 3 hours and two essay questions to be completed in remaining 1 hour. It is advised to allocate 2 hours and 45 minutes and give 1 hour and 15 minutes to the latter. It is extremely important to have timely checks to ensure that you are on track to be able to complete the exam on time. You should ideally have answered all the MCQs before moving on to the essay section.

Test yourself

While studying for the vast syllabus is an important aspect of your preparation for the CMA exams, it is equally essential to test oneself with quizzes, mock exams, question banks, and practice tests to assess and gauge the level as well as the effectiveness of the exam preparation. A common mistake many students make is not knowing when and how to use the different types of CMA study materials. The test banks are very important as they will help you familiarize yourself with the overall test structure and also make sure that you cover every topic in the syllabus. The timed mock exams are another crucial resource that can improve your exam-taking speed and accuracy.

Choose consciously

When making a choice to pick the study material or the training provider for the exam preparation, it is important to keep in mind certain factors that can make or break your journey to success. You must ensure that your choice fits in your budget, the preferred learning style, previous reviews, and the pass rates of candidates associated with the trainers/training institute. It would also be beneficial to look out for a learning provider that makes use of technology offering conveniences such as WhatsApp support, digital recordings of sessions, and online practice tests.

Read carefully

In the essay section of the CMA exam, it is important to be certain about what you intend to convey before you start writing. The examiners are keen on observing the usage of your language with words such as explain, compare, contrast, differentiate, etc. Therefore, ensure that you have sufficiently understood the question before beginning to answer it.

Maintain clarity

One of the criteria to grade an essay in the CMA exam is clarity. By using writing tools such as bullet points, well-spaced paragraphs, and a simple sentence structure you can bring the required clarity to your academic writing. Towards the end of the exam, if time allows, you can review your answers to make sure that you haven’t repeated yourself in the essay or added needless fluff to your writing.

Avoid grammatical errors

Another grading criterion used by examiners to assess the essay section is the “use of
standard English” which means that candidates must be careful about spellings, grammatical mistakes, and punctuation errors.

Have a study plan

A crucial part of exam preparation is to have a study plan in place, and in the case of CMA exam prep, make sure to have study plans for both part one and part two of the exam. Considering the vast amount of conceptual understanding required to pass the CMA exam, it is important to have a comprehensive study plan that focuses on each element of the syllabus sufficiently. You can benefit from having your study plan serve as your roadmap in the CMA exam preparation journey.

Take regular breaks

Not taking regular breaks from the study routine leads to burnout among several
candidates. The pressure is considerably higher when pursuing professional qualifications such as CMA since aspirants are generally in their final leg of education or working professionals and this can cause additional stress from various other elements. It’s advisable that when pursuing the exam preparation, one takes care of their mental and physical health equally, allowing frequent breaks in between long hours of studying.

The CMA is a qualification that requires guts, grit, and significant hard work from aspirants. If you are looking to pursue CMA training in UAE, contact Kaplan to find out how we can help you.

The Real Value of the CFA Charter

1

The demand for CFA in UAE has seen an exponential rise over the past decade. Attaining a CFA Charter is considered a key indicator of solid financial knowledge and can often be observed as a crucial decision-making criterion by employers when hiring for various roles within the finance industry.

While CFA has always been much coveted and sought after in the arena of professional development, the demand for it has only increased in the last few years due to the alarmingly low pass rates. The low pass rates make the qualification a worthy and exclusive achievement in the finance industry especially among early to mid-career professionals.

However, it is also no secret that working towards earning this qualification is a challenging task. It requires an average of 900 hours of total study time from aspirants and intense dedication despite which most candidates are met with disappointment in their attempts with a pass rate as low as about 22%.

These statistics often lead aspirants to question the overall value of CFA, opting for the CFA classes and whether or not it is truly worth pursuing. Here is a compilation of the key-value additions that CFA offers to help you understand the true worth of the qualification and assist you in making your decision with better awareness.

 

Higher salary

A boost in salary is perhaps the most commonly known and often mistaken as the only perk to come with the CFA Charter.

According to the CFA Institute’s 2019 survey, CFA salaries are 40% more than their peers and roughly 25% more than MBA holders annually. Therefore, when compensation is the criteria for deciding among aspirants between CFA vs MBA, the former stands at a clear advantage.

Qualification Standardization

The CFA Charterholders enjoy a very high international career mobility. There is little relevance or emphasis paid on the fact where they have attained the charter since it’s a standard form of professional development recognized by employers and countries around the world.

Also, when seeking employment, CFA Charterholders have a higher chance of securing placements since employers across the world acknowledge the dedication and efforts that are involved in earning the charter.

Return-on-Investment

The CFA also has proven to be a very good return on investment, especially when pitched against an MBA degree. While an average MBA may require you to shell out an average of $180,000 and two years of time to pursue the full-time degree, a CFA charter can be attained within a comparatively affordable range of $2500 to $8000.

It is also important to note that most professionals who choose to pursue the CFA qualification, continue their jobs full-time and therefore it does not pose a hindrance to their careers.

In addition, the CFA Institute also presents scholarship opportunities to aspiring candidates who need financial assistance that includes an enrollment fee waiver and a significant discount on registration costs.

Networking

With an impressively wide global network of more than 170,000 members, the CFA Institute offers exclusive opportunities to its Charterholders to connect and engage in member-only events. CFA networking is often seen to be highly effective among job-seekers in the industry.

Regional and local CFA societies regularly organize invitation-based meets to expand professional networks and educational seminars thereby enhancing the scope for continued professional development.

Career Progression

Those professionals who make it through the rather difficult journey of taking the exams and becoming certified Charterholders reap attractive rewards for their hard work. Based on the CFA employment statistics for the period ranging from 2015-2019, it was observed that the number of CFAs hired by the top 10 companies significantly increased year after year. Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley depicted the most consistent growth by hiring over 13% more CFAs annually.

It is also commonly observed in the recent hiring trends that employers tend to have a higher regard for CFA applicants since they acknowledge the potential employee’s dedication, hard work, and commitment to personal growth, therefore, making them an attractive prospect to contribute to a firm’s success.

 

Ultimately, all these factors associated with the CFA qualification empower professionals to significantly boost their careers and open more opportunities for future success! The choice is yours to make, and if you are looking to enroll in CFA course in Dubai, Abu Dhabi or anywhere in the Middle East, contact Kaplan Professional to know how we can help you!

Failed the CFA exam? Plan your next steps

Each year, roughly 250,000 candidates appear for the CFA exams around the world in an attempt to claim what is widely considered the “gold standard” within the investment community, the CFA charter.

It is no surprise that the intense difficulty of the CFA exams leads to the majority of the candidates failing at least once. It is, without a doubt, a highly disappointing and disheartening place to be in. However, it is important to see the bigger picture and not lose perspective when attempting to gain a qualification as coveted as the CFA. On the brighter side, candidates gain experience and can appear for their next attempt with a higher level of confidence.

The recently held CFA exams in November 2021 have shown a consistent trend across all three levels, alarmingly low pass rates. While the Covid-19 pandemic may be considered as a contributing factor to this phenomenon, it is important to focus on what are the ideal next steps one must take to ensure that they achieve success in the next attempt.

 

Better prepared for next attempt

The average CFA candidate spends about four years before gaining the charter, which shows that most fail at least one exam on their journey. While it may lead one to believe that 300 hours of study have been wasted, it is important to remember that a significant part of the preparation for the next attempt has already been completed leading the thought of “wastage” to turn into “investment”.

Can you attempt again?

Candidates are allowed to appear for each level of the CMA exam a maximum of six times, a policy that was instituted in 2021. Also beginning with the 2021 exams, candidates can take an exam up to two times per calendar year but cannot take the exam in windows that are consecutive or less than 6 months apart.

Plan your next attempt

The first step to deciding when to retake the exam is to assess your previous exam preparation experience. How many hours did you spend preparing? Did you consistently stick to a structured study plan? Are there other study materials that could help you pass your next exam? Examine how you will approach exam prep differently going forward, reflect on your own personal/professional goals, and consider the various exam window options offered by CFA Institute to determine when to retake the CFA exam.

In general, we recommend retaking the exam as soon as possible, especially if you can do so in the same calendar year. Registering for the next possible exam is best for the following reasons:

  • Momentum is on your side. Even if you have been taking a break since your last exam, all of the effort you put into preparing for it is relatively fresh.
  • The longer you wait to retake the exam, the higher the likelihood that you will forget the material that you have already learned.

It is particularly important to retake the exam in the same calendar year, if at all possible, since CFA Institute changes the CFA curriculum on an annual basis. Retaking the exam before these annual updates will give you a higher probability of passing because you will be more familiar with the curriculum being tested.

Studying for the next attempt

Regardless of which exam you decide to sign up for, we have some recommendations for approaching the next exam attempt:

  • Carefully review your exam results and use them as a diagnostic tool to help guide your studies on the next attempt.
  • Organize your study plan to focus on weak areas first. Your study plan should be weighted heavily toward practicing the material using the SchweserPro QBank and end-of-chapter questions in the CFA curriculum.
  • After doing additional practice, if you are still performing poorly, revisit the CFA SchweserNotes and OnDemand class videos to relearn the concepts with which you are struggling.

Continue this process until one month prior to the exam and then focus on a well-structured final review process.

For final review, focus heavily on practicing what you have learned, but with the CFA Schweser Mock Exams rather than the SchweserPro QBank. After completing a mock exam, thoroughly review the answer explanations for the questions you answered incorrectly. Make certain you understand the logic behind the correct answer. Also, be sure to use the OnDemand Review videos to sharpen your exam strategy and ensure you retain information for the exam.

Finally, get help through our InstructorLink tool if you are still struggling with the material. We want you to succeed on the CFA exams and are always ready to help. If you are looking to enroll in CFA course in Dubai, Abu Dhabi or anywhere in the Middle East, contact Kaplan Professional to know how we can help you!

Journey to the ACCA Membership

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) Qualification is a prominent symbol of expertise, due to its relevance to each and every area of accountancy and finance. It presents you with the choice of working in many different financial roles and at senior levels within an organization.

The ACCA membership is a highly sought-after accolade in the accounting industry. Employers respect the qualification and value the skills and contribution ACCA accountants make to their organization. As an ACCA-qualified accountant, you will be in demand for having the right skills.

To become a member of ACCA, one needs to successfully clear a set of exams that can be rigorous and challenging. Currently, there are about 230,000 qualified members of ACCA across the world, and around 530,000 enroute the path to membership. With such a high demand for the qualification, candidates often seem to get confused about the various routes of entry to the ACCA at different stages of their professional careers.

This article will help you in understanding the different stages in the journey to earning the ACCA membership.

Becoming an ACCA Affiliate

High School Students

If you are a high school student looking to kickstart your preparation to enter the corporate world in a few years, then ACCA would be an excellent choice. As a school student, you can begin your ACCA journey early and build a career towards being a certified chartered accountant by the age of 20. ACCA has flexible requirements on the minimum age of the candidates, so you can start as early as you feel you are prepared to take on the challenge!

University Students

University students are the most common age group of candidates currently pursuing the ACCA qualification. A significant benefit of pursuing the ACCA in this stage is that selected universities for selected degrees across the world offer exemptions of up to 9 ACCA exams, leaving only 4 exams to be completed. This is often a critical decision-making factor for students when choosing the university and the degree after high school as it helps in helps expedite their accounting journey.

In the UAE, universities such as the Middlesex University, University of Wollongong Dubai, and Heriot-Watt University among others offer degrees that qualify for the ACCA exemptions.

Alternatively, if you are already an ACCA student, then you have the opportunity to simultaneously earn a BSc degree in Applied Accounting from the prestigious, Oxford Brookes University in the UK and an MSc in Professional Accountancy from the University of London – one of the top universities in London. Both the degrees can be studied online without having to move to the UK and are an excellent route to take when studying for ACCA.

Experienced Professionals

If you are an experienced working professional and hold a relevant, fully accredited degree from a recognized university, you can get your educational credentials evaluated by ACCA at the time of your registration. Based on the relevance of your previous education, you may be granted exemptions to complete the ACCA qualification by attempting the remaining few exams.

Professional Ethics Module

The ACCA Professional Ethics Module is an online ethics module that must be completed before, at the same time, or soon after you become eligible, having completed the previous 9 exams or received exemptions for them.

You also need to complete this online module to achieve the BSc degree awarded by Oxford Brookes University.

Work Experience Requirement

To be able to qualify for the ACCA membership, you need to have acquired 36 months or 3 years of relevant work experience that can be completed before, at the same time, or after you clear the exams.

An important thing to note here is that these 3 years of work experience can be a non-full-time role, an internship, voluntary work, or even a self-employed role spread over a span of several years. To summarize, the ACCA requires a cumulative work experience of 3 years completed regardless of the continuity.

 

If you are interested in joining hands with an ACCA-approved tuition provider to help make your ACCA journey easier, then Kaplan Professional Middle East is here to offer you the expertise of having helped students to successfully ace their ACCA exams for several years with the industry’s leading trainers. If you are looking for ACCA courses in Dubai join us as a student to kickstart your ACCA exam preparation.