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Top 10 Personal Banker Certifications

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Updated 18 min read

Certifications are important for personal bankers in the job market because they demonstrate a level of competency and expertise. Certifications provide proof that a banker has the necessary knowledge, skills, and abilities to work in the banking industry. They also show that the banker is committed to staying current with industry trends and best practices. In addition, certifications can help a personal banker stand out from other applicants and give them an edge over non-certified candidates when applying for jobs. Finally, having certifications can open up more opportunities for advancement within the banking field.

The purpose of this article is to review the most beneficial certifications for Personal Bankers and explain how they can help further their career.

What are Personal Banker Certifications?

Personal banker certification is a professional certification that demonstrates an individual’s knowledge and expertise in the area of personal banking. The certification is intended to provide banking professionals with the necessary skills to effectively serve customers and create successful customer relationships. It is also beneficial for those looking to advance their career in the banking industry, as it demonstrates a level of proficiency in personal banking.

The certification includes topics such as financial literacy, customer service, credit analysis, risk management, compliance, and technology. Individuals must have at least two years of experience working in a retail banking environment in order to be eligible for the certification. After completing the program, individuals will receive an official designation from their certifying organization that verifies their expertise and qualifications.

Having personal banker certification can help individuals stand out when applying for jobs or promotions within the banking industry. It also provides individuals with a competitive edge over other applicants who do not possess this specialized knowledge and expertise. Additionally, having this certification shows employers that an individual has taken the initiative to further their education and gain valuable skills which can be applied to any job they may encounter in the future.

Pro Tip: When considering personal banker certification, make sure to research the requirements and qualifications for the specific program you are interested in. Knowing what is expected of you will help ensure that you are prepared to meet the necessary criteria and have the best chance of passing your exam.

Related: What does a Personal Banker do?

Top 10 Personal Banker Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Personal Bankers today.

1. Certified Personal Banker (CPB)

Certified Personal Banker (CPB) is a professional certification that demonstrates an individual’s knowledge and expertise in the field of personal banking. It is designed to help individuals gain the skills and knowledge necessary to become successful personal bankers. CPB certification is offered through the Institute of Certified Bankers (ICB), a subsidiary of the American Bankers Association (ABA).

The CPB certification program consists of two parts: a comprehensive online course and an exam. The online course covers topics such as customer service, financial analysis, loan origination, credit scoring, and more. The exam tests the candidate's understanding of the material covered in the course.

The cost for taking the CPB exam is $125 for ABA members and $150 for non-members. There are no prerequisites for taking the exam; however, it is recommended that candidates have at least one year of experience in banking or financial services before attempting it.

It typically takes about 6-8 weeks to complete the CPB program from start to finish. Candidates must complete all required coursework prior to taking the exam, which must be taken at an ICB-approved testing center. Candidates who pass the exam will receive their official CPB certificate within 4-6 weeks after passing.

2. Certified Financial Planner (CFP)

Certified Financial Planner (CFP) is a professional designation given to financial advisors who have met certain educational, experience, and ethical requirements. To become a CFP, an individual must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university and complete the CFP Board-approved coursework in financial planning. They must also pass the CFP Certification Exam and have at least three years of full-time financial planning experience.

It typically takes one to two years to complete the education and exam requirements for the CFP designation. The CFP Board offers online courses that can be taken at any time, as well as in-person classes held at various locations throughout the year. The cost of these courses varies depending on which program you choose, but can range from $2,000 to $4,000.

The CFP Certification Exam consists of two parts: a four-hour multiple-choice section and a two-hour case study section. The exam is administered twice per year (in April and October) at various locations around the country. The cost of taking the exam is $695 for members of the Financial Planning Association or $995 for non-members.

Once all requirements are met, individuals will receive their CFP certification from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board). This certification allows them to demonstrate their expertise in providing comprehensive financial advice to clients and helps them stand out among other financial advisors in their field.

3. Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)

The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) is a professional certification offered by the CFA Institute. It is a globally recognized credential that is designed to measure the competence and integrity of financial analysts. The CFA program consists of three levels of exams that cover topics such as investment management, financial analysis, quantitative methods, economics, ethics, and professional standards.

It typically takes about two to four years to complete the CFA program. To become a CFA charterholder, you must have at least four years of qualified work experience in investment decision-making activities and pass all three levels of the CFA exam.

To get started with the CFA Program, you must first register with the CFA Institute and pay an enrollment fee. After registering for the program, you will need to purchase study materials and enroll in a review course if desired. Once you have studied for and passed all three levels of the exam, you will receive your charter certificate from the CFA Institute.

The cost for enrolling in the CFA Program varies depending on your country of residence; however, it typically ranges from $1,000 - $2,500 USD per year. This includes registration fees as well as study materials and review courses if desired.

4. Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA)

Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) is a professional certification offered by the Investment Management Consultants Association (IMCA). It is designed to recognize individuals who have achieved a high level of proficiency in the field of investment management.

The CIMA certification requires applicants to pass an examination that tests their knowledge and understanding of investment management principles, processes, and practices. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as portfolio construction, asset allocation, risk management, and financial planning.

It typically takes between six months and one year to prepare for the CIMA exam. To get started, applicants should review the IMCA's Candidate Handbook which outlines all of the requirements for taking the exam. Additionally, applicants should consider enrolling in an IMCA-approved preparation course or studying independently with materials from the IMCA's online library.

The cost of obtaining the CIMA certification varies depending on whether you are an IMCA member or non-member. For members, it costs $1,250 USD plus applicable taxes; for non-members it costs $2,125 USD plus applicable taxes.

5. Chartered Wealth Manager (CWM)

Chartered Wealth Manager (CWM) is a professional certification awarded by the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) to individuals who have demonstrated a high level of knowledge and expertise in wealth management. The CWM designation is recognized as an international standard for providing quality wealth management advice and services.

To become a Chartered Wealth Manager, one must first complete the CISI’s Level 6 Diploma in Wealth Management. This diploma requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of financial markets, investment products, taxation, risk management, estate planning and other related topics. It also requires them to pass four exams: Financial Markets & Products; Taxation; Risk Management; and Estate Planning & Trusts. The diploma program typically takes around six months to complete depending on the individual's study habits and availability.

Once the diploma has been successfully completed, individuals can then apply for the CWM designation through the CISI website. Applicants must provide evidence of their qualifications, experience and professional conduct before they can be admitted into the program. Once accepted into the program, individuals must submit a portfolio of work demonstrating their knowledge and skills in wealth management before being awarded the CWM designation.

The cost of obtaining the CWM designation varies depending on which country you are applying from but typically ranges from £2,000 - £3,500 GBP ($2,500 - $4,500 USD). This cost includes exam fees as well as membership fees for joining the CISI as a Chartered Wealth Manager.

6. Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS)

Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) is a professional designation offered by the College for Financial Planning. It is designed to provide financial advisors with the knowledge and skills necessary to help clients make informed decisions about their investments. The AAMS program is a comprehensive course of study that covers topics such as asset allocation, portfolio management, retirement planning, estate planning, taxation, and more.

To obtain the AAMS designation, individuals must complete an online or in-person course of study from the College for Financial Planning. The program consists of six courses which cover topics such as investment principles, portfolio construction, retirement planning strategies, and risk management. Upon successful completion of all six courses and passing the final exam with a score of 70% or higher, individuals will receive their AAMS designation.

The cost of obtaining the AAMS designation varies depending on whether you take the online or in-person course. The online course costs $3,495 while the in-person course costs $4,995. Additionally, there are additional fees associated with taking the final exam and obtaining your official certificate.

In total, it typically takes between 4 to 6 months to obtain your AAMS designation depending on how quickly you work through each course.

7. Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA)

Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA) is a professional designation awarded by the American Bankers Association (ABA). It is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated expertise in providing trust and financial services. The CTFA credential requires successful completion of a rigorous program of study that covers the areas of fiduciary law, taxation, investments, financial planning, estate planning, and trust administration.

It typically takes three to four years of study to complete the CTFA program. During this time, candidates must complete courses in the core curriculum as well as electives related to their particular area of specialization. Candidates must also pass an examination administered by the ABA.

To become a CTFA, candidates must first meet certain requirements including having at least five years of experience in trust and financial services or related fields. They must also be employed by an organization that has been approved by the ABA as a provider of trust and financial services.

The cost to obtain the CTFA credential varies depending on where you take your courses and how long it takes you to complete them. Generally speaking, it can cost anywhere from $1,000-$5,000 for tuition fees alone. Additionally, there may be additional costs associated with books and materials needed for coursework as well as exam fees.

8. Certified Retirement Counselor (CRC)

Certified Retirement Counselor (CRC) is a professional designation awarded by the International Foundation for Retirement Education (InFRE). The CRC designation is designed to recognize professionals who have demonstrated knowledge and expertise in retirement planning.

To obtain the CRC designation, individuals must complete an approved course of study, pass an exam, and adhere to a code of ethics. The course of study typically takes about six months to complete and consists of online or classroom-based instruction in topics such as retirement income planning, Social Security benefits, and investment strategies.

In order to qualify for the exam, applicants must have at least three years of experience in retirement planning or related fields. Once qualified, applicants can register for the exam through InFRE's website. The cost of the exam is $495 USD. Once passed, individuals will receive their official certification and be eligible to use the CRC designation after their name.

9. Certified Private Banker (CPBK)

Certified Private Banker (CPBK) is a professional certification program that recognizes individuals who possess the skills and knowledge to provide private banking services. The CPBK designation is offered by the Institute of Certified Private Bankers (ICPB), an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting excellence in private banking.

The CPBK program consists of three levels: Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced. Each level requires completion of a series of courses and examinations. The Foundation level focuses on basic private banking principles, while the Intermediate and Advanced levels cover more complex topics such as wealth management, investment strategies and risk management.

It typically takes between 18 months and two years to complete all three levels of the CPBK program. However, some individuals may be able to complete it in less time depending on their prior experience and knowledge.

To get certified as a CPBK, you must first register with ICPB and pay the associated fees. You will then need to complete all three levels of the program within two years or less. Once you have completed all three levels, you will receive your official certification from ICPB.

The cost for the CPBK program varies depending on which level you are pursuing and how quickly you want to complete it. Generally speaking, it can range anywhere from $2,000-$5,000 USD for all three levels combined.

10. Professional Risk Manager (PRM).

Professional Risk Manager (PRM) is an internationally recognized certification program designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of risk management professionals. The PRM designation is a mark of excellence in the field of risk management, and it demonstrates a commitment to the highest standards of professional practice.

The PRM program consists of three levels: Foundation, Professional, and Master. Each level requires passing an exam administered by the Professional Risk Managers’ International Association (PRMIA).

The Foundation Level is designed for those new to the field of risk management, who have less than two years' experience in the field. It covers topics such as financial markets, banking systems, derivatives instruments, credit risk, market risk, operational risk, insurance principles and regulation. The exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and takes two hours to complete.

The Professional Level is intended for those with more than two years' experience in the field. It covers topics such as enterprise risk management frameworks, capital adequacy requirements, stress testing methods, portfolio optimization techniques and advanced derivatives pricing models. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and takes three hours to complete.

The Master Level is for experienced professionals who have at least five years' experience in the field. It covers topics such as enterprise-wide risk governance structures, stress testing methodologies and advanced quantitative models for measuring systemic risks. The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions and takes four hours to complete.

To become certified as a PRM professional you must pass all three exams within five years from when you first took your first exam. There are no prerequisites or educational qualifications required to take any of these exams; however it is recommended that you have some prior knowledge or experience with financial markets or banking systems before attempting any level of the PRM certification program.

The cost for each level varies depending on where you take your exams; however expect to pay anywhere from $400-$1,000 per exam depending on your location and whether or not you are taking advantage of any discounts or special offers available at the time you register for your exams.

Do You Really Need a Personal Banker Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on what kind of career you plan to pursue. A Personal Banker Certificate can be a beneficial asset for those who are looking to pursue a career in the banking industry. Having this certificate will show potential employers that you have taken the initiative to learn more about personal banking and that you are dedicated to offering customers the best service possible.

If you are looking for a job in the banking industry, having a Personal Banker Certificate may give you an edge over other applicants. It shows that you have taken the time and effort to learn more about personal banking, which employers often look for when hiring new employees. Additionally, having this certificate can help set you apart from other applicants and make your resume stand out from the rest.

Overall, it is up to each individual to decide whether or not they need a Personal Banker Certificate. If you plan on pursuing a career in banking, then having this certificate may be beneficial as it shows potential employers that you have taken the necessary steps to become knowledgeable about personal banking and that you are committed to providing customers with excellent service.

Related: Personal Banker Resume Examples

FAQs About Personal Banker Certifications

1. What is a Personal Banker Certification?

Answer: A Personal Banker Certification is a professional certification that demonstrates an individual’s knowledge and skills in providing banking services such as deposits, withdrawals, loans, investments and financial advice. It also covers topics such as customer service, compliance and risk management.

2. How do I become a Certified Personal Banker?

Answer: To become a Certified Personal Banker, you must complete an accredited certification program or pass an exam administered by the American Institute of Banking (AIB). The AIB offers courses in banking fundamentals, customer service, risk management and compliance. After completing the course or passing the exam, you will receive your certification.

3. Is there a cost to obtain my Personal Banker Certification?

Answer: Yes, there may be costs associated with obtaining your Personal Banker Certification depending on the program you select. Some programs may charge tuition fees while others may require payment for exam materials or registration fees. Be sure to research different programs to find one that fits within your budget.

4. How long does it take to obtain my Personal Banker Certification?

Answer: The amount of time it takes to obtain your Personal Banker Certification depends on the type of program or exam you select. Generally speaking, most programs can be completed within one year but some may require up to two years of study before taking the final exam to earn your certification.

5. What are the benefits of having a Personal Banker Certification?

Answer: Having a Personal Banker Certification can open doors for career advancement opportunities within the banking industry and demonstrate that you have the necessary knowledge and skills for success in this field. Additionally, having a Professional Banker Certificate can improve job prospects and help employers identify qualified candidates when hiring new personnel for their financial institution.

Editorial staff

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Brenna Goyette

Expert Verified

Brenna is a certified professional resume writer, career expert, and the content manager of the ResumeCat team. She has a background in corporate recruiting and human resources and has been writing resumes for over 10 years. Brenna has experience in recruiting for tech, finance, and marketing roles and has a passion for helping people find their dream jobs. She creates expert resources to help job seekers write the best resumes and cover letters, land the job, and succeed in the workplace.

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