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I know I want to go into Auditing.... CPA or CIA??? Which one should I start with?

Jill Thayer's Profile

Good Morning Accounting Professionals, I am about to graduate in May with my accounting degree and I am looking to decide what certification I should get. I know I would like to end up in Auditing or Forensic Accounting. Could anyone provide real world advice on which certification I should go after first? I do see the validity of obtaining both, or maybe even adding a CFE into the mix, but would like to get into the work field sooner rather than later. Thank you so much in advance for your time


(Senior Manager of External Reporting) |

I would suggest you go for the CPA. You cannot make a career out of external auditing at a public accounting firm without it. Also if you went into internal audit a CPA would look really good. One caveat though is a CPA is not required by public accounting firms for internal audit so if you know 100% you want internal audit you could potentially forego the time and stress related to sitting for the CPA. However my personal opinion is to go far in the accounting world and especially audit of any kind a CPA is an important tool to have (and as I said in external audit it's a requirement if you want to stay in it). Any certifications beyond that would be dependent on which path you wanted to take (cia, cisa, cfe, etc). FYI I just left a big 4 accounting firm as a senior manager in external audit so that is where my info is coming from. Hope this helps.


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