Top 10 Short Term Finance Courses in 2024 [Recruiter’s Favourite]

In an evolving economic landscape, the finance industry continues to be an attractive career prospect for many in India. As the industry grows, the demand for well-rounded, educated finance professionals follows suit.

This blog post will guide you through the top 10 short term finance courses that can supercharge your career in finance. Let’s dive in-

Why Short Term Finance Courses?

In the fast-paced world we live in, it’s essential to stay current and continuously develop professionally. This is particularly true in the finance sector where the industry’s dynamics change rapidly. Short term finance courses serve as a catalyst to not only update and refine your skills but also give your career a significant boost. Let’s understand how-

  • Targeted Knowledge and Skill Acquisition: These courses focus on particular areas of finance. Be it risk management, financial modeling, or investment analysis, they provide concentrated knowledge and skills in your chosen area.
  • Enhancing Employability: Short term finance courses are often recognized by employers as evidence of practical, up-to-date skills. This not only enhances employability but also helps professionals stand out in competitive job markets.
  • Industry Recognition: Courses like CFA, FRM, and CPA are recognized globally, making them an excellent choice for those who wish to work in different parts of the world.
  • Cost and Time Effective: These courses take less time to complete compared to traditional degrees, and are generally more cost-effective. Therefore, they provide a quicker return on investment.

Career Opportunities After Short Term Finance Courses

Pursuing a short-term finance course can open doors to a plethora of career opportunities in various sectors. Here’s a brief look at the potential career paths you can follow:

Career PathRole DescriptionRecommended Courses/Certifications
Investment BankingAssisting clients in raising financial capital.CFA, Financial Modeling & Valuations, CAIA
Equity ResearchAnalyzing financial data and trends to provide investment recommendations.CFA
Risk ManagementIdentifying, analyzing, and mitigating uncertainties in an organization’s investment decisions.FRM, PRM
Wealth ManagementProviding services that include portfolio management, financial planning, estate planning, and more.CFP
Corporate FinanceManaging a company’s finances, including its investments, capital structure, and working capital.CMA, CFA
TradingBuying and selling of securities on behalf of clients or on an institution’s behalf.NISM, NCFM
Accounting and AuditingPreparing and examining financial records to ensure that financial records are accurate, taxes are paid properly, and on time.CPA, IFRS
ConsultingProviding expert advice to help businesses improve their performance and efficiency.CPA, CMA, CFA

Things to Consider Before Choosing a Finance Course

Selecting the right finance course is a crucial decision that can significantly impact your future career. Therefore, it is important to take into consideration several factors before making this decision:

  • Relevance to Your Career Goals: Ensure that the course aligns with your career aspirations. If you aspire to work in investment banking, a course like CFA or Financial Modeling would be more relevant than a course focusing on accounting standards.
  • Reputation of the Institution: Always check the reputation of the institution or organization offering the course. A course from a reputed institution carries more weight and adds more value to your CV.
  • Course Content and Structure: Scrutinize the course curriculum to ensure it covers relevant topics and is up-to-date with current industry practices. A good course should provide both theoretical knowledge and practical skills.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Compare the cost of the course with the value it provides. Consider the potential return on investment, which could be in the form of a higher salary, better job opportunities, or accelerated career progression.
  • Career Opportunities: Look at the job prospects after completing the course. Does the course offer a pathway to the roles you’re interested in? Does the course have a good track record of alumni success?
  • Accreditation: It’s essential to check if the course is accredited by a recognized body. Accredited courses meet a certain standard of education and are often more valued by employers.

Top 10 Short Term Finance Courses in India

Courses on Portfolio Management and Investment Analysis

These courses are geared towards individuals interested in the world of investment management. Completing these courses can help you land roles in investment banks, mutual funds, hedge funds, or other financial institutions where managing and maximizing investment returns is the primary goal. Let’s explore them –

Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)

The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification is globally recognized and serves as a significant benchmark in the finance industry. Offered by the CFA Institute in the USA, this course sets the standard for investment professionals, especially in core finance.

Course Description: The CFA course equips learners with a wide range of skills, such as investment management, financial analysis, equities, fixed income, derivatives, and portfolio management. The course content is continuously updated to include new developments in the finance field, ensuring that the curriculum remains relevant to the industry.

Duration: The CFA Program consists of three levels – Level I, Level II, and Level III. Each level typically requires at least 300 hours of study, and the entire program can take between 2 to 5 years to complete, depending on the candidate’s pace and pass rate.

Course Structure:

  • Level I focuses on basic knowledge and the tools and terms of finance.
  • Level II is about the application of the tools and concepts of finance with a focus on valuing assets.
  • Level III involves managing portfolios, planning, and applying the tools and concepts learned at Level I and II.

Institutions: This course is offered by the CFA Institute. Candidates can register for the course and the exam directly through the CFA Institute.

Career Prospects: CFA charterholders are highly valued by employers across finance sectors worldwide. They can work in a wide range of positions including Portfolio Manager, Research Analyst, Consultant, Risk Manager, and Investment Strategist.

Also Read: CFA Jobs in India – Scope, Salary, and Recruiters

Cost: The cost of the CFA program depends on when you register for the exams. Early registration can save you money, but on average, the total cost (including exam registration and program enrollment fees) can be around $3,500 to $4,500, depending on the level and timing of the exam registration.

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Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA)

The Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) is a globally recognized credential offered by the CAIA Association. It’s specifically designed for professionals managing, analyzing, distributing, or regulating alternative investments like real estate, commodities, hedge funds, and private equity.

Course Description: The CAIA course equips learners with a comprehensive knowledge of alternative investments. It covers topics such as professional standards and ethics, hedge funds, private equity, commodity investments, real estate investments, and structured products.

Duration: The CAIA certification is composed of two levels, which most candidates complete within 1 to 1.5 years.

Course Structure:

  • Level I focuses on the basics of alternative investments, tools and techniques for valuation, and the principles of professional conduct.
  • Level II builds upon Level I and focuses on advanced topics in alternative investments. It also involves the application of ethical and professional conduct in complex situations.

Institutions: This course is offered directly by the CAIA Association.

Career Prospects: Professionals who earn the CAIA Charter can pursue careers in various roles such as Hedge Fund Manager, Portfolio Manager, Private Equity Analyst, Risk Manager, and Financial Consultant. They are sought after in various sectors, including asset management firms, consultancy firms, banks, and regulatory bodies.

Cost: The total cost of earning the CAIA Charter, including registration and exam fees, typically ranges from $3000 to $3500.

Financial Modeling & Valuations

Financial Modeling and Valuations courses are designed to equip finance professionals and students with the skills required to create and understand financial models, perform company valuations, and analyze financial data. These courses are offered by various institutions, both offline and online, worldwide.

Course Description: These courses cover the fundamentals of financial modeling and valuation, including building financial models from scratch, projecting financial statements, DCF (Discounted Cash Flow) modeling, and relative valuation techniques. Participants learn to use Excel for financial forecasting, analysis, and decision-making.

Duration: The duration of these courses can range from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the depth of the course content and the pace of learning.

Course Structure: Typical topics covered in these courses include:

  • Basic Excel skills for finance
  • Advanced Excel formulas and functions
  • Understanding financial statements and company filings
  • Financial forecasting and building a financial model
  • Company valuation techniques, including DCF and relative valuation methods

Institutions: These courses are offered by various institutions worldwide. Some notable ones include Quintedge, Wall Street Prep, CFI (Corporate Finance Institute), and Coursera. Many business schools in India, including IIMs, also offer financial modeling and valuation courses.

Career Prospects: Financial Modeling and Valuation skills are highly valued in several roles within the finance industry, including Investment Banking, Equity Research, Corporate Finance, Private Equity, and Venture Capital. Professionals in these roles are often required to build financial models and perform valuations of companies or projects.

Cost: The cost of these courses can vary greatly, ranging from INR 10,000 to INR 50,000, depending on the provider and the depth of the course content.

Popular Course in this category
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Comparison table

Below is a table comparing the above listed courses on the most relevant factors-

Course NameDurationCost (INR)Average Salary (INR per annum)Brief DescriptionCareer Prospects
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst)2-4 years2,50,000-3,00,0006,00,000-12,00,000Covers a broad range of topics in finance like corporate finance, portfolio management, and financial analysis.Investment Banking, Equity Research, Portfolio Management
CAIA (Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst)1-1.5 years2,20,000-2,60,00010,00,000-18,00,000Focuses on advanced knowledge in alternative investments like real estate, private equity, commodities, and hedge funds.Portfolio Management, Hedge Fund Management, Risk Management
Financial Modeling & ValuationsFew weeks to few months10,000-50,0005,00,000-12,00,000Equips students with skills required to create financial models, perform company valuations, and analyze financial data.Investment Banking, Equity Research, Private Equity

Courses on Risk Management

Risk management courses offer specialized knowledge in identifying, assessing, and controlling threats to an organization’s capital and earnings. Let’s explore them –

Financial Risk Manager (FRM)

The Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification is recognized globally as the premier certification for financial risk professionals. The course is offered by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP), which is based in the USA.

Course Description: The FRM course is designed to equip professionals with the necessary tools and knowledge to manage risk in a comprehensive manner. It covers the fundamental concepts of risk management and their application in the real world. Topics include credit risk, market risk, operational risk, liquidity risk, investment management, and risk management in insurance.

Duration: The FRM certification is divided into two parts – FRM Exam Part I and Part II. Most candidates complete both parts of the exam within a year.

Course Structure:

  • FRM Exam Part I focuses on the tools used to assess financial risk: quantitative analysis, fundamental risk management concepts, financial markets and products, and valuation and risk models.
  • FRM Exam Part II focuses on the application of the tools acquired in Part I through a deeper exploration of market risk, credit risk, operational and integrated risk management, risk management and investment management, and current issues in financial markets.

Institutions: The course and the exams are offered directly by GARP.

Career Prospects: With an FRM certification, you can explore career opportunities in risk management within banks, asset management firms, as well as in corporate and financial institutions. Common job roles include Risk Manager, Operational Risk Analyst, Financial Risk Consultant, and Financial Analyst.

Also Read: FRM Jobs in India – Scope, salary and Recruiters

Cost: The cost of the FRM certification varies depending on when you register for the exams, but you can expect to spend around $1500 – $2000 in total for both parts. This includes the exam enrollment and registration fees.

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PRM (Professional Risk Manager)

The Professional Risk Manager (PRM) certification is an international certification offered by the Professional Risk Managers’ International Association (PRMIA). This course is dedicated to providing knowledge and skills related to risk management.

Course Description: The PRM program is divided into four exams, each focused on a specific area of risk management: Finance Theory, Financial Instruments, Mathematical Foundations of Risk Measurement, and Risk Management Practices.

Duration: The PRM certification can typically be completed in 1-2 years, depending on your preparation.

Course Structure: The course includes topics such as financial theory, financial instruments, markets, mathematical foundations of risk measurement, and risk management practices.

Institutions: The certification is provided by the Professional Risk Managers’ International Association (PRMIA), an international professional body.

Career Prospects: The PRM certification is recognized globally and can lead to career opportunities in risk management, trading, structuring, modeling, etc.

Cost: The cost of the PRM certification can vary depending on membership status with PRMIA. For members, the cost of the full program is around $1,100. For non-members, it’s about $1,488.

Comparison table

Below is a table comparing the above listed courses on the most relevant factors-

Course NameDurationCost (INR)Average Salary (INR per annum)*Brief DescriptionCareer Prospects
FRM (Financial Risk Manager)1-2 years1,00,000-1,50,0006,00,000-14,00,000Emphasizes risk management principles, particularly financial risk, and its impact on global financial systems.Risk Management, Corporate Finance, Portfolio Management
PRM (Professional Risk Manager)1-2 years80,000-1,10,0006,00,000-14,00,000The program is divided into four exams focused on specific areas of risk management: Finance Theory, Financial Instruments, Mathematical Foundations of Risk Measurement, and Risk Management Practices.Risk Management, Trading, Structuring, Modeling

Courses on Financial Planning and Wealth Management

Courses in this category provide students with a solid understanding of financial planning, including personal finance, estate planning, retirement planning, and investment planning. These courses often lead to careers in wealth management, financial planning, or related fields. Let’s explore them-

Certified Financial Planner (CFP)

The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification is one of the most prestigious credentials for financial advisors and planners worldwide. It is offered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards in the USA, and the FPSB in over 25 other countries, including India.

Course Description: The CFP course is designed to provide comprehensive knowledge about personal financial planning. This includes areas like investment planning, retirement planning, insurance planning, tax planning, and estate planning. The course focuses on developing practical financial planning skills that can be directly applied in a professional setting.

Duration: The duration to complete the CFP certification varies based on individual study pace and exam schedules, but it can typically be completed within 1 to 2 years.

Course Structure: The course consists of six modules:

  1. Introduction to Financial Planning
  2. Risk Analysis & Insurance Planning
  3. Retirement Planning & Employee Benefits
  4. Investment Planning
  5. Tax Planning & Estate Planning
  6. Advanced Financial Planning

Institutions: In India, this course is offered by the Financial Planning Standards Board India (FPSB India). Candidates can register for the course and exams directly through FPSB India.

Career Prospects: CFP professionals are highly valued in the financial services industry and can work as independent financial advisors, wealth managers, or financial planners in various financial institutions, banks, and mutual fund houses. They may also find opportunities in life insurance companies, pension fund management companies, and financial consultancy firms.

Cost: The total cost of the CFP certification in India, including the registration and examination fees, typically ranges between INR 50,000 to INR 70,000.

NISM and NCFM Certifications

The National Institute of Securities Markets (NISM) and the National Stock Exchange’s Certification in Financial Markets (NCFM) are two prominent certification programs in India that offer a range of courses related to financial markets.

Course Description: Both NISM and NCFM offer a variety of modules catering to different segments of financial markets. These include securities markets, derivatives, mutual funds, investment analysis, wealth management, financial planning, and more.

Duration: The duration of each course depends on the specific module chosen. Generally, they are short-term courses which can be completed in a few weeks to a couple of months.

Course Structure: The structure of each course depends on the specific module chosen. However, each module covers a comprehensive understanding of the chosen topic, including theoretical knowledge, practical applications, and regulatory aspects.

Institutions: NISM certifications are offered by the National Institute of Securities Markets, an initiative of SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India). NCFM certifications are offered by the National Stock Exchange of India.

Career Prospects: NISM and NCFM certifications are highly recognized in the Indian financial industry and can provide a significant career advantage. Certified professionals can pursue a wide range of opportunities in areas such as trading, wealth management, investment advisory, risk management, and regulatory bodies.

Cost: The cost of each certification depends on the specific module chosen. Generally, the cost ranges from INR 1,500 to INR 5,000 per module.

Comparison table

Below is a table comparing the above listed courses on the most relevant factors-

Course NameDurationCost (INR)Average Salary (INR per annum)*Brief DescriptionCareer Prospects
CFP (Certified Financial Planner)1-2 years60,000-70,0005,00,000-8,00,000The course covers all aspects of personal finance, investment planning, insurance planning, and retirement planning.Financial Planning, Wealth Management, Insurance Planning
NISM and NCFM CertificationsFew weeks to few months2,000-10,000 (per module)3,00,000-6,00,000These certifications are designed to build a strong foundation in financial market roles, rules, and terminologies.Trading, Broking, Wealth Management

Courses on Accounting, Auditing, and Financial Control

These courses are intended for those interested in the intricacies of financial transactions within a business setting. Roles in this category require individuals to ensure the accuracy of financial records, tax compliance, timely audits, and financial controls. The skills gained in these courses are highly valued across all industries. Let’s explore them-

Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

The Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential is globally recognized and considered one of the top certifications in the field of accounting. The course is offered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), USA.

Course Description: The CPA course provides a comprehensive understanding of American Financial Reporting, Auditing, Regulation (which includes taxation), and Business Concepts. These are the essential skills required for accounting and finance professionals working with US-based firms or firms working according to US standards.

Duration: The CPA course consists of four sections, each of which requires separate preparation and exams. The total duration depends on how many sections you attempt at a time, but most candidates complete the CPA certification within 12-18 months.

Course Structure: The CPA Exam consists of four sections:

  • Auditing and Attestation (AUD)
  • Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)
  • Regulation (REG)

Institutions: In India, you can prepare for the CPA exam through various coaching centers that offer training for CPA. However, the certification is offered directly by AICPA, and candidates must apply through one of the 55 state boards of accountancy in the United States.

Career Prospects: CPA professionals can pursue a wide range of career opportunities across industries such as public accounting, corporate accounting, consultancy, and tax advisory. CPAs are highly valued by accounting firms, corporations, and government agencies.

Cost: The cost of the CPA certification varies based on the state board you apply through, but it typically ranges from $1500 to $3000, including exam fees, application fees, and review course expenses.

Certified Management Accountant (CMA)

The Certified Management Accountant (CMA) certification is a globally recognized credential that focuses on the advanced skills required for accounting and financial professionals in business. The course is offered by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), USA.

Course Description: The CMA course provides a comprehensive understanding of management accounting and financial management. This includes areas like financial planning, analysis, control, decision support, and professional ethics. The CMA curriculum is designed to meet the evolving needs of business – today and tomorrow.

Duration: The CMA course consists of two parts, and each part can be completed in about 6 to 12 months of dedicated study.

Course Structure: The CMA exam is divided into two parts:

  • Part 1: Financial Planning, Performance, and Analytics. This part covers external financial reporting decisions, planning, budgeting, forecasting, performance management, cost management, internal controls, and technology and analytics.
  • Part 2: Strategic Financial Management. This part covers financial statement analysis, corporate finance, decision analysis, risk management, investment decisions, and professional ethics.

Institutions: The course and exams are offered directly by the IMA.

Career Prospects: CMAs can pursue careers in various roles such as Financial Analyst, Financial Controller, Cost Accountant, and Chief Financial Officer (CFO). They can work in industries ranging from manufacturing and services to non-profit organizations, academic institutions, and government bodies.

Cost: The total cost of the CMA certification, including the IMA membership, CMA entrance fee, and exam fees, typically ranges between $1000 to $1500.

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) certification is a globally recognized qualification for accounting and finance professionals. It’s issued by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), UK, which ensures that professionals are well-versed in these standards for accurate and consistent reporting across various industries.

Course Description: The IFRS course provides a detailed overview of all current IFRS standards and interpretations. It covers the structure of the framework, presentation and profit, accounting for assets, liabilities, group accounting, and disclosures.

Duration: The duration to complete the IFRS certification can vary based on individual study pace, but it is generally a short-term course that can be completed within 3 to 6 months.

Course Structure: The course covers the following areas:

  • Introduction to the IFRS concept and its application
  • The structure of the International Financial Reporting Standards Board (IFRSB)
  • Key principles and applications of major standards and interpretations, including those related to financial statements, revenue recognition, assets, liabilities, and group accounting.

Institutions: The certification is provided directly by ACCA. In India, several institutions provide training for IFRS certification, but the exams are conducted by ACCA.

Career Prospects: IFRS professionals are sought after by multinational companies, accounting bodies, and auditing firms. They can work in various roles such as Financial Controller, Chief Accountant, Audit Manager, and Finance Manager. Professionals with a deep understanding of IFRS are critical to companies that adhere to these standards for their financial reporting.

Cost: The total cost of the IFRS certification, including the registration and examination fees, typically ranges between INR 20,000 to INR 30,000.

Comparison table

Below is a table comparing the above listed courses on the most relevant factors-

Course NameDurationCost (INR)Average Salary (INR per annum)*Brief DescriptionCareer Prospects
CPA (Certified Public Accountant)1-2 years1,20,000-1,50,0007,00,000-15,00,000Internationally recognized, the CPA course covers various aspects of international accounting and auditing.Accounting, Auditing, Corporate Finance
CMA (Certified Management Accountant)1-2 years1,00,000-1,30,0006,00,000-14,00,000The CMA certification is a professional credential that can be earned in the advanced management accounting and financial management fields.Financial Control, Management Accounting, Financial Analysis
IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards)6-12 months30,000-50,0006,00,000-10,00,000The course focuses on teaching global accounting standards to make uniform the reporting system of finance throughout the world.Accounting, Auditing, Financial Analysis


The financial world is a fast-paced, dynamic landscape that requires up-to-date knowledge, analytical skills, and competency in various financial concepts and tools. Short-term finance courses are an excellent way to gain these vital skills and knowledge, offering practical insights and expertise in the field.

Whether you’re looking to specialize in investment analysis, risk management, wealth management, or accounting and auditing, there’s a course that fits your career aspirations. Choosing a short-term finance course is a significant investment in your future. Make sure to conduct thorough research, consider multiple factors, and make an informed decision.

Here’s to your future success in the dynamic world of finance!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are these short-term finance courses worth the investment?

Yes, these courses offer specialized knowledge and skills that can significantly enhance your career prospects in the finance industry.

What are the career prospects after completing these finance courses?

These courses can open up opportunities in various fields like investment banking, risk management, wealth management, accounting etc. The exact prospects depend on the specific course you choose.

Bain & Co.
5000+ Students Trained in the field of Investment Banking, FRM & CFA

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