Tips for Writing Successful Descriptions

When you apply for CFA Institute membership, you will be asked to describe your responsibilities for each of your positions to demonstrate that it is qualified work experience. Please only enter positions that qualify as acceptable work experience.

What Makes a Good Description?

For each job description, you should describe your job duties and how they relate to investment decision making. Each description needs to:

  1. Demonstrate how you conduct independent analysis that impacts investment decision-making for institutions or individual clients

  2. Indicate how your duties produce a work product that informs or adds value to the investment decision-making process.

Example Descriptions


Qualifying Description

"I prepare financial models based on reviewed information, analyze fundamentals, and value acquisition targets to provide recommendations to the investment committee."

Why It's Good

  1. The applicant describes the types of independent analysis involved in this position.
  2. The applicant creates financial models and investment recommendations as work products that influence investment decisions.

Non-Qualifying Description

"My work focuses on successfully managing key relationships with end-clients relating to a new Know Your Client (KYC) initiative."

What It's Missing
This applicant needs to submit additional job details. It is not clear that the position involves independent analysis and it does not describe a work product that impacts investment decisions.

Improved Description
I develop and maintain strong working relationships with clients and communicate investment performance and strategy. I provide advice on a wide and diverse range of investment solutions customized to best meet the financial needs of those clients after thoroughly assessing financial fundamentals, reviewing business risk profile, and doing stress testing on cash flows.

Non-Qualifying Description

"I conducted an annual actuarial valuation process and benefit calculations."

Why It's Good
The applicant describes the types of independent analysis involved in this position.

What It's Missing
This applicant needs to better demonstrate how the analysis created a work product that added value to the investment decision- making process.

Improved Description
I conducted an annual actuarial valuation process and benefit calculations which included performing projections, cash flow analysis, and durational analysis of individual health insurance policies. These analyses had a direct bearing on the investments chosen to back the reserves for these blocks of business.

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