How LinkedIn Can Help a CFA® Program Student for Career Growth

How LinkedIn Can Help a CFA® Program Student for Career Growth


Studying to become a Certified Financial Analyst isn’t that proverbial cakewalk by any standards. It needs years of extra effort at learning various accounting processes, laws and regulations, complex calculations, and lots more.

However, all the efforts and resources you invest in becoming a CFA charterholder can pay equally rich returns, if you know how to pitch your skills from the moment you graduate. There’ll be a lot of employers that are eager to hire, helping you embark on what can prove to be a fruitful and prosperous career.

And that’s exactly where LinkedIn comes in: it helps your career growth.

Amazing LinkedIn Facts

Before explaining how LinkedIn helps career growth, it’s important to comprehend how this professionals networking platform really works fully.

Here’re some interesting statistics.

  • By mid-2020, LinkedIn had over 706 million users in 200 countries and territories around the world, says the company website.
  • At least one person gets hired somewhere in the world every 10 seconds through LinkedIn. This statistic aptly proves that LinkedIn accounts for millions of placements every year.
  • The majority of professionals that have a presence on LinkedIn- about 57 percent- do not feel the need to visit any other job board to find vacancies.
  • LinkedIn allows recruiters to view a jobseeker’s profile and references instantly. References play a major role for LinkedIn members to get the right jobs and employers to find the right talent.
  • LinkedIn brings down recruitment costs by anything between 40 percent and 60 percent. These savings occur because recruiters can create job posts free or at very economical prices compared to other portals.

Role LinkedIn Can Play for Career Growth of CFA® Program Candidate

You might wonder how the above facts about LinkedIn are relevant for a CFA Program candidate and career growth. Therefore, here’re some features of LinkedIn that can help you create an excellent career even while you are a CFA Program candidate and beyond.

Posts on LinkedIn

A lot of LinkedIn users are blissfully unaware of this facility. You can write excellent articles and post them on LinkedIn. These posts are broadcast across the LinkedIn network and can be read by professionals from any field in any country. The better your post, the higher the number of readers you’ll attract.

However, LinkedIn posts are not similar in any manner whatsoever to a post on your Facebook wall. A post on LinkedIn has something to do with your profession and career. A lot of these posts are written by renowned professionals who are also CFA charterholders or are masters in their own right. Reading posts related to your future career as CFA charterholders helps enrich your knowledge.

By writing excellent, interesting, and engaging posts about the CFA designation and the profession, you can attract the attention of lots of people in the finance industry. Some of these would be decision-makers that can decide to hire you outright, even before you get certified as a CFA charterholder.

Linking Up with Peers & Faculty

As I mentioned earlier, LinkedIn is present in 200 countries and territories. This allows you to connect with peers in other countries and faculty members of other colleges and universities both within the US and outside. You can send a connection request to faculty members to some popular figures in the accountancy and finance fields.

Every employer will view your connections before sending that interview call. And if your connections are impressive enough, the employer may decide to hire you even before the interview. Having a mutual connection helps you land the job faster and advances your career as CFA charterholder.

Getting Excellent References

One of the salient features of LinkedIn is the facility known as ‘Ask for Reference.’ All you need to do is select someone whom you would like to have as a reference and send them the request using this feature. If the person agrees, they can become your reference.

At the same time, you can add several excellent references on your LinkedIn profile. Start with faculty members of your CFA program. There’s a good chance that some prospective employer was once a student of the same faculty member. This increases your chances of getting the job and enhances career prospects.

References are something that every employer will check on LinkedIn. Furthermore, no one can create fake references or edit a reference comment on LinkedIn. Therefore, an employer gets a somewhat clear picture of what they can expect when they hire you for the first job.

Boost Own Practice

You’ll know that most CFA charterholders launch their practice after getting some first- hand experience by working with an accountancy or finance firm, bank, or financial institution. Getting clients for your practice is easier with LinkedIn as compared to any other means.

You can create an amazing LinkedIn profile by speaking about yourself, showcasing educational qualifications, skills, and services that you can offer to clients. Additionally, you can also get letters of recommendation and references from previous employers and faculty members, former batch-mates, or peers.

A lot of people that hire financial consultants for their business or personal wealth management look for CFA charterholders on LinkedIn. Simply because nobody wants to find CFA charterholders through advertisements or entrust their money to people with dubious credentials, LinkedIn helps you create an excellent impression of the financial consultancy market.

Success as a Personal Financial Advisor

A financial advisor is vital for anyone who wants to make their money work in a legit way and make it earn more. Personal financial advisors or financial consultants make a lot of money by helping people invest in the right way. They charge a consultancy fee. And they get commissions or incentives from banks and financial institutions whose products they promote or acquire customers.

A superb LinkedIn profile can help launch your independent consultancy as a personal financial advisor. You can highlight the areas of interest to a client such as retirement planning, tax savings, and others and speak about the banks and financial institutions and the products you promote.

Show Your CFA Designation Status on LinkedIn

As a CFA Program student, you can use the LinkedIn sections labeled “Licenses & Certifications” and “Accomplishments” to:

    Display your CFA program candidacy

    Add your candidate’s digital badge

    Indicate your Candidacy for an upcoming exam

As a charterholder, you can add your CFA Charterholder status and Charterholder digital badge on the “Licenses & Certifications” section.

We will outline the steps to correctly update your LinkedIn profile in line with the CFA institute guidelines.

FRM Part I & Part II Complete Course

Share Your Candidate Status on LinkedIn

You may display that you have passed each of the exams under Test Score if you are a candidate in the CFA Program.

However, it is key to note that the Code and the Standards of the institute forbid you from using your Candidacy in the Heading of your profile or stating/implying a partial designation that comes with passing one or more exams or cite an expected completion date of any level of the CFA Program.

Display the Exam Level you have Passed under “Test Scores” Section

  • On your LinkedIn, click view profile.
  • Click on the “Add profile section.”
  • Select “Test scores” under Accomplishments
  • Under Test Name, input the Level of the CFA exam
  • Enter “passed” under Score if you have passed the particular Level
  • Input the month, and the year of the date you passed the exam on the Test date
  • Under Description, type something like, “Passed CFA Level II.”
  • Click on Save.

Add your Candidate/Charterholder Digital Badge (Optional)


There are three badges for candidates who have passed Level 1, Level II, and CFA charterholders, as shown below:


Indicate Your Candidacy for an upcoming exam (Optional)

  • On your LinkedIn, click view profile.
  • Click on the “Add profile section.”
  • Under Accomplishments, select Courses.
  • Input “Level [I, II, or III] CFA exam candidate” under courses name
  • Click on Save.


Add Your CFA Designation

One way of updating your CFA designation status on LinkedIn is by simply adding “CFA” after your name. Additionally, you can add a certification under the Licenses & Certifications Section as outlined in the following steps:

  • On your LinkedIn, click view profile.
  • Click on the “Add profile section.”
  • select Licenses & Certifications under Background
  • Name Input “Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA) Charterholder.” If your charter has been awarded
  • Input “CFA Institute ” Under the Issuing Organization
  • Box labeled “The credential does not expire:” Check this box if you are a CFA Institute member, and you fulfill the requirements to maintain your status. However, note that you must select the month and year that your membership lapsed in the event of membership lapsing.
  • Leave this field blank the “Credential ID” field blank
  • You may insert your digital badge URL under the “Certification URL.”
  • Select the month and year you received your charter under “Issue Date.”
  • Click Save.


In Conclusion

A LinkedIn profile is your most vital resource for success in any career. And for CFA charterholders, it is even more important because your career deals with other people’s finances. Having a killer profile on LinkedIn not only helps you while you are studying to become a CFA charterholder. But it also helps you find that critical first job where you’ll gain on-hands experience about the roles you can play as CFA charterholder. While financial accountancy itself is a large field, you can select your areas of specialization and showcase them on LinkedIn to attract employers and clients. For every CFA charterholder, a LinkedIn profile can open the door to an amazing career.


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