CPA practical experience: Overview for employers

As an employer, you have certain responsibilities to assist the future CPAs you employ as they complete their practical experience requirements for CPA certification. Learn about the specific requirements and your essential role as an employer.

You play a significant role in the development and certification of future CPAs. Practical experience requirements are a critical component in the CPA designation program. They provide important on-the-job training to supplement candidates’ formal education and the Common Final Examination.

The profession provides helpful documents and resources that detail the practical experience requirements for CPA students/candidates and explain your role as employer.

CPA practical experience resources for employers

Mandatory orientation webinars for students/candidates

Once students/candidates register their employment with their provincial/regional body, they will be given access to complete the mandatory orientation webinars. After completing them, they will automatically be given access to PERT through D2L.

If you are interested to see information in the webinars, feel free to watch the two-part webinar:

  • Practical Experience Orientation for Future CPAs: Part One — The first webinar provides an overview of the CPA Practical Experience Requirements (CPA PER) and summarizes qualifying experience, appropriate supervision, CPA mentorship, reporting and assessment, and assessment by the profession.
  • Practical Experience Orientation for Future CPAs: Part Two — Since mentorship is a key component of the CPA PER, the second webinar includes information about the CPA mentorship program and mentor/mentee expectations. Part Two also explains how students/candidates should prepare for meetings with their mentors.

CPA mentorship

The matching process for mentorship depends on which route you choose to obtain your practical experience requirements:

  • Pre-approved program: Future CPAs are matched with a CPA mentor by the organization offering the program.
  • Experience verification: Future CPAs seek out their own CPA mentor to find a successful fit. The profession will help match CPA students/candidates with CPA mentors if they are unsuccessful in finding a mentor.

The profession may accept up to one year of experience earned prior to registering with the profession. After that time, the qualifying period of practical experience cannot begin until future CPAs have a CPA mentor.

NOTE: The national standards for practical experience do not apply to employers in Quebec.Contact CPA Québec for more information.