Is CFI Worth It?- A Formal Analysis

Is CFI Worth It?- A Formal Analysis

Overview Of Corporate Finance Institute 

Is CFI truly worth it? Before discussing it, let’s take a glance at what exactly CFI is.

CFI (Corporate Finance Institute) is a financial analyst diploma organization that empowers education and online coaching to finance-related experts and consists of courses including valuation Financial Modeling and Corporate financial cases. It provides a decent education globally.

CFI has become a popular organization in which students from about 170 countries are enrolled.  With a sudden storm in its popularity, it has become an apt question that is CFI worth it?

How is it better than other organizations? There must be several questions in your mind as to whether you should enroll in CFI or is it a waste of time and money? Why should I apply for an expensive course when other options are also available?

That’s why we have brought you a formal analysis that helps in evaluating whether CFI is truly worth it or not.


CFI mainly provides 4 certification courses. These certification courses include:

  • Financial Modeling& Valuation Analyst (FMVA)
  • Commercial Banking and Credit Analyst (CBCA)
  • Capital Markets and Security Analyst (CMSA)
  • Business  Intelligence and Data Analyst (BIDA)

1. Financial Modeling and Valuation Analyst (FMVA) Certification by CFI:

There are four steps of the FMVA certification program by CFI.

Step 1- In the first step, there are a total of 7 courses available that contain the fundamentals.

Step 2- In step two, there are 11 compulsory courses related to financial modeling and valuation.

Step 3- In step three, you have to choose any 3 courses out of 11 courses mentioned in step two.

Step 4- In step four, you have to give a final exam in which you have to score at least 70% to get certified. 

FMVA is the most valuable and popular course among other certifications of CFI. It is the most adopted course by a majority of students.

FMVA is a six months course. There are a total of 29 courses available in this certification. If a person enrolled in FMVA graduates from CFI, the average salary offered to that student is about $121,000. There are copious job types available after CFI’s FMVA.

2. Commercial Banking and Credit Analyst (CBCA) Certification by CFI:

CBCA is also divided into several steps. First, there are 6 courses in which you will learn the fundamentals. These all are optional, you can skip them if you have already mastered these courses. 

Moving on, 16 main courses are not optional. You have to learn these courses to get familiar with CBCA. In the next step, you have to choose any 3 courses out of 16 main courses and then, as usual, you will have to score 70% to get CBCA certified.

CBCA has a total of 35 courses. You will get to learn financial analysis, credit structure and documentation, management and business analysis, risk management, and industry analysis.

There are several job posts that you can secure after getting CBCA certified including Commercial Loan Officer, Risk Manager, and Credit Adjudicator, Commercial Loan Broker, Credit Analyst, and Private Lender. 

3. Capital Markets and Securities Analyst (CMSA) Certification by CFI:

CMSA has 5 optional courses in its first stage. Then there are 8 main courses. You will have to choose 7 courses out of a total of 16 available courses in the specialized subjects. After completing all these courses, you will be CMSA certified. 

The skills you will learn during CMSA certification include Derivatives, fixed income, analytical methodologies, foreign exchange, commodities, and equity.

The career options after getting CMSA certified include sales and trading, asset management, wealth management, treasury, risk management, research, and origination. 

4. Business Intelligence and Data Analyst (BIDA) Certification by CFI:

BIDA by CFI includes 17 courses in all. There are 2 other comprehensive case studies to examine your skills learned. The courses can be completed in 150-200 hours. At last, you will have to score 70% to get BIDA certified like other courses. 

The skills you will learn in BIDA include Data Transformation and Automation, Data Visualization, Data Modeling, Coding, Predictive Analysis, and Statistics. You can get a job as Data Analyst, Business Analyst, Quantitative Analyst or Data Scientist, BI Developer, and Data Visualization Analyst after getting BIDA certified. 

Why Is The Corporate Finance Institute (CFI) Worth It?

Coming on to the topic of whether CFI is truly worth it. There are several reasons mentioned below by which you will get an idea of the worth of CFI and the answer to the question of why you should choose CFI over others.

Emphasis On Practical Knowledge:

Let me tell you that CFI is good at empowering practical knowledge to its students. The institutions or companies always require candidates who possess practical knowledge as their employees. CFI provides substantial financial case studies to the students. 

The financial models and quizzes designed for students are truly worth it because it tests the learning of students at every level. 

Plenty Of Courses Available:

There are plenty of courses available in CFI. Any certification under CFI is not a step-by-step course. Instead, the courses are subdivided into several parts. If you have a familiar knowledge of any previous step then you can directly jump on to another step. 

For instance, if you have mastered the Leveraged Buyout in FMVA already, then you can skip it and jump onto the Leveraged Buyout Modeling. Skipping a sub-course that you have already mastered saves plenty of time and simply you can opt for what you need. 

Adaptable Learning Hours, Online Lessons, And Assessments:

Yes! CFI provides flexible learning hours. That means you can take lessons anywhere or anytime whenever you find it convenient. It is also advantageous for those who want to achieve their job position as soon as possible by completing the certification course. 

One doesn’t have to wait for other students or teachers to complete their course and fixed exam dates to get certified. The online lessons provided by CFI can be accessed from anywhere and you can anytime examine your learning by taking tests. You can practice exams according to your calendar.

Excellent Content Of The Syllabus:

The content of the syllabus designed by CFI for its certification courses is of high quality. The courses are easily understandable even to beginners. 

There are competent videos of finance courses including worksheets after every topic is explained. Yes, the courses are costly but the syllabus is worth it. And I think if you now take these costly quality courses and later get a good job then it is not a loss deal. 

Learn The True Language Of The Corporate Finance World:

The Corporate Finance Books often lack updated corporate language. The books are written in academic form. And you should know that to write a good novel, then the language of Shakespeare is quite more desirable and acceptable rather than your normal language. 

It means that the corporate finance world or companies accept those candidates who are more familiar with today’s language of finance. So this is quite small but a dignitary reason to prefer CFI over others. 

Future Possibilities:

You know that once a name is established, then it becomes difficult for it to vanish unless and until it provides quality content. CFI enrolls over 100,000 students every year. It has become a trustworthy institute with a trust of over 10 years. 

The gossip of CFI among everyone CFI estimates a far-reaching effect of the institute. In the future, job-related opportunities are going to increase because of its name. Hence, enrolling in CFI is a future securing deal. 

Higher Salaries:

I wouldn’t say that everyone is gonna make huge after getting certifications from CFI. But I can say that certifications from CFI can boost your overall performance and chances to get a good job. An experienced candidate is quite equally considered as a certified candidate. 

Certified candidates from CFI are usually offered more salary packages than the other candidates searching for jobs.

Along with your salary, you get several kinds of increments too. And financial security is a must for each individual. The chances of getting financially secure increases in case of certification from CFI.

Copious Carrer Options After Getting Certified By CFI:

There are copious career options available after getting certified by CFI. You can choose any of the fields according to your interest. 

Here is the list of the few fields that you can choose after getting certified:

  1. Mergers and Acquisitions Modeling
  2. Advanced Excel Formulas
  3. Startup/ e-commerce Financial Model
  4. Real Estate Financial Modeling
  5. Mining Financial Model and Valuation
  6. Excel VBA for Finance
  7. Leveraged Buyout (LBO) Modeling
  8. Renewable Energy – Solar Financial Modeling
  9. Corporate and Business Strategy
  10. Credit Analysis
  11. Risk Management
  12. Project Finance 
  13. Asset Management
  14. Equity Research
  15. Financial Analyst
  16. Portfolio Management
  17. Venture Capital
  18. Corporate Development
  19. Budgeting
  20. Quants or Financial Engineering, etc.

There are much more career options that are not mentioned above. The field is too wide to mention. You can see the opportunities on your own after getting certified by CFI.

Moreover, there are other increments too including salary packages. Hence, if you are an enthusiastic individual, then you can easily get fit in any of the copious job roles mentioned above.


There must be several questions in your mind as to whether you should enroll in CFI or is it a waste of time and money. That’s why we have brought you a formal analysis that helps in evaluating whether CFI is truly worth it or not?

As we have discussed CFI, all kinds of CFI, its skills and scope, and at last why CFI is worth it. All kinds of CFI-certified programs lead to one or more job positions.

The one disadvantage we all discover is its high cost. But we have to pay something to get something. There are plenty of courses with practical knowledge. There is quality content and future possibilities too. All these advantages make CFI worth it. 

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