Canadian CPA certification program aligning with career needs for the information age

As business moves into the information age, Chartered Professional Accountants need to have the digital and data skills essential to driving organizational value. To meet the growing demand for accountants skilled in these critical areas, the CPA Competency Map, which outlines the knowledge and skills required to enter the profession, now includes a greater emphasis on data analytics and information systems (DAIS).

Toronto, February 4, 2019 – As business moves into the information age, Chartered Professional Accountants need to have the digital and data skills essential to driving organizational value. To meet the growing demand for accountants skilled in these critical areas, the CPA Competency Map, which outlines the knowledge and skills required to enter the profession, now includes a greater emphasis on data analytics and information systems (DAIS).

Tax content in the Competency Map has also been updated to reflect a growing and evolving array of tax regulations, both domestic and international.

The CPA Competency Map sets the foundation for the CPA certification program, which consists of the CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP), evaluations (including the Common Final Examination), accreditation and practical experience. It outlines the knowledge expectations for newly certified CPAs to ensure they are highly proficient with the two types of competencies — technical and enabling.

In this information age, data is power,” said Joy Thomas, president and CEO, Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada. “In a world increasingly awash with information, making sense and best use of data is the key to making better business decisions.”

In addition to preparing new CPAs with enhanced DAIS and tax knowledge, CPA Canada is providing a range of professional development opportunities for current members so they, too, can meet the needs of the ever-evolving digital economy. “One of the biggest benefits associated with the profession is its commitment to lifelong learning,” adds Thomas.

Changes are overseen by the CPA Canada Competency Map Committee with input from employers, academics and other stakeholders, as well as the more than 4,000 CPAs across the country who participated in various consultations and feedback initiatives.

Because of the nature of the CPA certification program and its interrelatedness with provincial regulations, as well as employer needs and post-secondary curriculums, revisions do take time. However, the pace of technological change requires that qualifications for entering the CPA profession be continually updated to reflect the current business environment. Over the next two years CPA Canada will be announcing further updates to the Competency Map to reflect the ongoing evolution of technical and enabling competency requirements.

“Business doesn’t stand still so continuous improvement and professional development are vital to CPA Canada, our students and our members,” notes Tashia Batstone, senior vice president, external relations & business development. “Our country’s future economic success depends on having a deep and up-to-date pool of top business and accounting professionals.”

 

For more information about the CPA certification program’s competency map, visit: cpacanada.ca/competencymap.