CIMA Fast-Track Programme

A programme offering an accelerated route for individuals facing exceptional circumstances to achieve CIMA qualification by gaining exam exemptions, dependent on their finance experience.

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For future cohorts

2024 applications are closed. Stay tuned for future cohort opportunities by registering your interest for alerts.

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Who is this development programme for?

This CIMA programme provides an opportunity and extra support for individuals in achieving full CIMA qualification by using their experience to apply for examination exemptions. This process fast-tracks an individual’s process on their CIMA qualification journey. This is aimed at people who are ‘qualified by experience’ but may have been disadvantaged or found it difficult to sit exams to date, for e.g.:

  • Disadvantaged background due to education, demographic or social and cultural factors
  • Cultural reasons
  • Unrecognised non-UK based professional exams
  • Lack of funding (employer or personal)
  • Lack of relevant job opportunities (systemic, demographic, or social)
  • Childcare or carer responsibility

Please note that the examples above do not guarantee a place on the scheme. The panel will consider the entire application, including the explanations behind the reasons for applying.

Who this programme isn’t aimed at?

This fast-track route is exclusively for individuals facing exceptional circumstances that have hindered their qualification progress. Applications will not be accepted from those unable to demonstrate such circumstances. For instance, reasons like ‘work pressures,’ ‘year-end,’ ‘starting a family,’ etc., are not considered compelling enough cases unless they involve experiences beyond what others would reasonably be expected to encounter.

Application process

There are two levels for which you can apply:

  • Operational
  • Management

Both levels offer several exam exemptions upon successfully passing the corresponding case study exam.

To apply, you must complete an application form, providing evidence of meeting specific NHS finance core and technical competencies relevant to the chosen level. Additionally, you need to submit a cover letter outlining your reasons for applying, explaining why you have not yet become qualified, along with an updated CV. Approval from your line manager and finance director is also required.

Your eligibility for the programme will be assessed by a panel of experienced CIMA qualified finance professionals and a CIMA Services Relation Manager.

A guidance document, including instructions on how to apply for the scheme, will be available once applications open for the next cohort

If you have any questions about the programme or application process, please contact and one of the team will be happy to help you.

Register your interest for future cohorts

2024 applications are closed. Stay tuned for future cohort opportunities by registering your interest to receive alerts.

Register your interest

CIMA Fast Track Programme 2023 Q&A Webinar

Watch the September 2023 one hour Q&A webinar here. Please note content may not be applicable to future cohort application processes.

Watch here