As an accounting professional, you understand the importance of maintaining your license as well as pursuing continuing professional education (CPE). You can find support with CPE from one of the many accounting organizations that operate in the U.S. 

These include state CPA societies as well as member-based associations, all of which act to support accountants and other financial professionals. 

After reviewing news sources and input from Controllers Council members and subscribers, we’ve created the following list of the top accounting organizations of 2022:

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) is responsible for setting accounting rules for companies and non-profit organizations across the U.S. 

They are recognized by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as establishing policies for public companies. There are currently seven board members, and board members are appointed by the FASB trustees.

Institute of Management Accountants (IMA)

The Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) offers the prestigious Certified Management Accountant exam and is an association for accountants across the globe. As of 2021, the IMA had 139,000 members in 150 countries.

American Institute of CPAs (AICPA)

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is a non-profit organization of American certified public accountants (CPAs). 

The AICPA is devoted to setting standards in the CPA profession and can also serve as an advocate for governmental bodies or public interest groups. As of 2021, the AICPA had 431,000 members.

Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA)

The modern practice of internal auditing is roundly associated with the formation of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) in 1941. Since then, the IIA has provided certification, education, and other resources for those investigating a company’s internal financial processes.

They offer the following qualifications:

  • Certified Internal Auditor (CIA)
  • Certificate in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA)
  • Qualification in Internal Audit Leadership (QIAL)

The IIA has over 200,000 members worldwide.

Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)

Based out of the U.K., the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) offers training and qualification in management accounting, as well as providing support for financial professionals.

Membership is conditional on experience and performance on an entrance exam, and a higher-tiered membership is available to experienced candidates. Today, there are 696,000 members in over 190 countries.

National Association of State Boards of Accounting (NASBA)

The National Association of State Boards of Accounting (NASBA) oversees the 55 CPA license boards that operate in the U.S. and territories.

Membership is restricted to the licensing boards themselves, which means that individuals cannot be members of the NASBA. However, individuals can take advantage of their services to accounting professionals. 

For example, NASBA can assist CPAs in transferring their license from one state to another, so they may be able to provide assistance during a move or a switch to a new company.

Corporate Finance Institute (CFI)

Financial professionals can pursue additional education through the Corporate Finance Institute (CFI), which provides online resources to help accountants meet personal and professional benchmarks to further their careers.

Multiple pricing plans are available for both individuals and teams, making CFI among the better online educational tools available in the finance industry.

State CPA Societies

If you’re looking for a local association, you might consider your state’s CPA society. The size of each society corresponds to your state, with states like California and New York being among the largest. The offerings vary by state, but the local network can connect you to other resources, job postings, and more.

Financial Executives International (FEI)

Senior-level accountants can gain support from Financial Executives International (FEI), whose 10,000+ members can be found at over 65 local chapters nationwide. FEI serves to advocate for the views of CFOs and other financial leaders, and their organization provides opportunities for networking, educational resources, and more.

The Controllers Council

Controllers Council provides a platform for controllers, CFOs, and other corporate accounting and finance professionals. We provide training and career resources, as well as networking opportunities to our 90,000+ members and subscribers.

Members can find free or discounted CPE resources, as well as obtain the Certified Professional Controller designation through our online resources. Individual and company memberships are available, and you can join by signing up today.

National Association of Black Accountants (NABA)

The National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) is devoted to assisting people of color in attaining a position as an accounting professional. 

They provide their 200,000 members with career-building resources, educational tools, and networking opportunities designed to help those who have traditionally been underrepresented by the financial industry.

Conclusion

Which organization is right for you? This determination depends on your individual needs and career goals, but each of the above organizations can connect you to great resources that further your education and connect you to the broader community. 

Taking advantage of these resources can enhance your career and provide industry-specific support at every stage of your professional journey.

Meet the CFO - Interview Series - Shannon NashWebinar Thursday, September 29

The next interview in the series features Shannon Nash, CFO of Wing, the drone delivery unit of Google parent company Alphabet. Shannon is a CPA, and a recovering attorney with a JD.