How to do CMA along with the Job

How to do CMA along with the Job

How to do CMA along with the Job

  • CMA Foundation | CMA Inter, Motivation

  • CA Satish Jalan

How to do CMA along with the Job

If you are into a job, the first question that strikes your mind is, Will I be able to manage?”

Many working professionals wish to elevate their careers by doing a CMA Course alongside their Job. 

The first question to be answered is:

Why to do CMA when you already have a job?

There are three prime reasons for it:

1. To get a hike

If you are planning a hike in the salary

A. The CMA or Cost And Management Accountant is a course formed using Finance and Management as a base. You learn about the most realistic and complex aspects of Finance Management. 
B. This course helps you in escalating to a senior position. It includes a holistic view of the finance as well as the management branch.


2. To achieve career goal 

The second goal is to achieve career goals and gratification in life.


3. To start something of your own

You can start your own practice firm or to do any freelancing professional jobs..

If the answer to the above is clear in your mind, you will surely have a reason to qualify CMA. 

Now, let’s dive deep into the study plan for studying the CMA.


Study Plan

1. How much time can I do it? -  

You need 4.5 years, assuming you are already a graduate.

2. Entry Route -

A. Direct entry route-  You can join CMA through this route if you are a  Graduate/CS Foundation Pass/CA Inter Pass.

B. Foundation Route- You can go through this route if you don't have a graduation degree but have passed Class 12.


3. How to fulfill the practical training requirements?

  • The beauty of this program is that even if you are working somewhere, the institute will accept the work experience based on some criteria defined by them. So, you need not do the practical training again.
  • For example: In case, if it's a manufacturing company, the turnover must be at least Rs.2 crores. In the same way, service industries must have revenue of Rs.50 lakhs to qualify.
  • But, please note that If you are working in a CA firm, you won't get any exemption from the practical training. 

4. Should I attempt a single group or both groups together?

  • Do not hustle to just appear in the examination without adequate preparation. Under-preparation and hassle to attempt examinations will only create demotivation. Prefer to attempt the exam group wise when you already have a job.
  • Always take one group at a time instead of hurrying to attempt two groups at a time.

5. Start your course early- Take time in hand

  • Prime Mantra is to start early and plan for a later attempt.
  • Finish the entire syllabus for a group at least two months before the examination in case of Intermediate level. For the final level, finish the syllabus of the group at least three months before the examination.
  • A student who scores well is due to his strategy during the revision period, rather than focusing only on completing the course. Backlogged students focus more on studying than revision until the last day of the exam.

6. Hours of study required per day

If you can spare, a minimum of 20 hrs. per week in the Inter Level and upto 30 hrs. per week in the Final Level. It will get you your CMA degree in 4.5 years (without any backlog).

For example: 

You need to invest at least 20 hrs per week for the Inter Level. If you break it down, it will be one class of 2.5 to 3 hours daily for 5 days and 7.5 hours during the weekend.

7. By when should the first studying of the course be completed?.

  • You need to finish your syllabus/studies, 2 months before the Inter Level examination.
  • For the Final Level, you need to finish your syllabus 3 months before the examination, so that you can start the revision

8. Study Plan for the CMA Intermediate level:

The maximum time required to do CMA Inter is 2 years. The Study plan consists of two parts: 

The first part is the Study Period and another part is the Revision period.

During the study period, you go through the syllabus in-depth, attempting the questions, solving them, and understanding the concepts and theories.

9. Time Allocation for CMA Inter - Group 1:

A. Time Required -
  • In the Intermediate group, study time for your subject is 150 hours.
  • According to this timeline, four subjects need 600 hours. If we divide 600 hours/20hours it will come down to 30 weeks to cover the entire syllabus.
  • If we further divide this 30 weeks into months, then it comes down to 7.5 months. 
  • The revision process takes up to two months. So the total sum comes down to 9.5 months for Group One.

B. TimeLine framework- 

  • For Group One attempt in December, start preparing as early as February/March and finish the syllabus by September.
  • Plan your first revision as early as October and the second revision by November.
  • If you are planning to take the June attempt backdate those 9.5 months. You can keep half a month as a buffer month, so it sums up to 10 months in total.
  • As per this strategy, you will be able to complete both the course and the revisions in time.
  • Always appear for Group One before moving on to Group Two, as many subjects are interlinked from Group one in Group Two.
  • Take leave from the office at least 7 days before the exam and appear for Group 1.
  • After the exams, you will have to do the training programs conducted by the Institute to be eligible for Group 2.

10. Time Allocation for CMA Inter - Group 1:

  • The framework for Group two is almost similar to Group One, that is, it also requires 600 hours of study.
  • Complete your classes at least 2 months before the exam.
  • The study period is 7 months and the time required is 20 hrs./week.

Pro Tip: If you start late, you may opt for studying one or two subjects by yourself. Read word by word of ICAI Mat, solve every question.

Give your best to pass in that attempt. If unsure of results, do not join group 2 classes.

During the period between exam and result, join Skill training and Soft Skill Training organised by the Institute.


11. Study Plan For CMA Final

The final level consists of two groups - Group One and Group Two. 

Group One is lengthier than Group Two. The maximum time required to pass the Final is 2.5 years. It also has the same two parts - the study period and the revision period.

"Complexities if handled at priority makes things simpler."

12. Time allocation for - CMA Final Group One

A. Time Allocation 

  • CMA Final Group 1 requires a minimum of 1,000 hours.
  • Increase study time gradually per week to 30 hrs per week
  • Time required to complete classes at 30 hrs/week in 33 weeks. It will require at least 9 months.
  • Complete your classes 3 months before the examination.
  • If you keep three months of revision for the final group, it will require almost a year for preparation.
  • Periodical revision is important for keeping the subjects in grip.
  • In these three months, you need to revise at least twice, if possible, thrice. For both.

Points to Ponder:  

  • Enroll yourself on the IOTP, which is a 7 days training program.
  • If you are working somewhere, ensure that training exemption is filed.
  • Wait for the result before starting Group Two. Once the results are declared, start preparing for Group Two.

13. Time allocation for CMA Final Group 2

  • For Final Group Two, you need at least 650 hours for four subjects. You need to allocate 250+150+100+100 hours for each subject respectively.
  • Complete your first studying with classes at the rate of 30hrs/week. The four subjects can be completed within 20 - 22 weeks. If you study at the same speed for 5 months, you will be able to complete the preparation. You should have two months in hand before the examination for revision.

14. What to do when you are not a graduate?

  • If you are not a graduate, you may start from the Foundation Route. You require a minimum of 400 hrs study hours for CMA Foundation.
  • Study the subjects by sparing atleast 20 hrs per week.
  • Complete your syllabus two months before the exam so that you have time for revision.
  • The time required will be 7 months.

If you have further doubts, please feel free to comment below.


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