Ten Key Competencies Finance Professionals Must Have

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants has introduced an interactive checklist of competencies which business leaders require from aspiring finance professionals.


For the first time, the global body for professional accountants has published an online competency framework, highlighting the ten key competencies finance professionals must have if they are to succeed in business and their career.


The ACCA Qualification comprehensively covers these abilities and behaviours through its exams, practical experience requirement and the ethics module.


ACCA has identified the following 10 key competencies for complete finance professionals in its new Competency Framework:

1. professionalism and ethics
2. governance, risk and control
3. stakeholder relationship management
4. strategy and innovation
5. leadership and management
6. corporate reporting
7. sustainable management accounting
8. financial management
9. audit and assurance
10. taxation.

The Competency Framework will enable employers, learning providers, current and potential students to see the key competencies which are learned through the ACCA Qualification and how they relate to the requirements of different jobs.


"A competency is defined as a fundamental knowledge, ability or expertise in a specific subject area or a specific behaviour," says Helen Brand, chief executive of ACCA.


Brand notes the ACCA Qualification addresses all the key competencies required by finance professionals, from performance and financial management and taxation, to Islamic Finance; and the principles of Integrated Reporting."


"We have developed this competency framework to ensure that aspiring finance professionals, employers and tuition providers are clear about the key skills demanded in an increasingly globalised and rapidly changing business environment," says Brand.


A survey of more than 500 chief financial officers for ACCA's report, "The Complete Finance Professional 2013: Why Breadth and Depth of Finance Matter in Today's Finance Function," identified the key financial areas that CFOs said they need in the finance function.


Apart from the need for accounting professionals to behave and act ethically and professionally, financial management and financial analysis were seen as particularly high-impact areas, followed closely by governance risk and control, strategic management accounting and corporate reporting. Internal audit, tax advice and planning were also widely considered to have considerable impact.


"The Competency Framework highlights the abilities which aspiring finance professionals must have if they are to meet the requirements of potential future employers," says Brand.


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