I found that many students are finding difficulty in passing CPA CFE day 1 exam. Even in 2018, well qualified CA from India and other countries could not get success in passing day 1 exam. Some have approach me to put one course exclusively for Day 1. I provide below in brief some important hints to pass this exam at first attempt.
Day 1 – Evaluating your soft / professional skills (4 hours)
The first day of the CFE is a Pass/Fail mark treated separately and distinctly from Day 2 or 3. You can pass or fail Day 1 regardless of how you do on Day 2 and Day 3. Similarly, if you fail Day 1, you need to re-do, and successfully complete Day 1 regardless of how you did in Day 2 or 3. Day 1 is linked to the Capstone 1 module with the case being directly tied to your Capstone 1 case. You are provided with the original Capstone 1 case (not your solution) and the updated information on your CFE case. Day 1 tests your soft/professional skills, at a senior management level discussion. You are not expected to discuss accounting or other technical competencies in any great detail but focus on the ‘enabling competencies’.
Capstone 1 case is mainly focusing enabling competencies. Therefore report will focus enabling competencies in depth and technical up to level 1. Enabling competencies are, problems solving and professional judgement, leadership, ethical, communication and etc. (refer CPA competency map). Capstone one case is mainly related with problem solving issue.
- Know your Capstone 1 case inside and out ahead of time
- Broad thinking and integration of case facts
- Assess the situation and what needs to be done (situation analysis)
- Analyze the major issues
- Conclude and provide useful advice (solution)
- Ensure your communication is clear
Student should focus on big picture, prioritize issues, perform both quantitative and qualitative analysis, use appropriate tools for quantitative analysis, and provide your answer looking into internal and external environment of the company.
Students are required to prepare a report. See the format of report in detail. In situation analysis, provide present environment, assess the situation with tools like, Portal Five forces, PESTAL analysis and SWOT analysis.
In second part analyse various issues, prioritize it, provide financial analysis wherever required, and your recommendation to resolve the issue.
In conclusion, suggest best course of action based on your analysis.
Also ensure that you will watch for the time limit of 4 hours. Do not put more input in situation analysis, major part is main issues significantly affecting the decision, and brief conclusive summary.
Marker will assess your holistic approach to the case; answers may be more than one.
If anyone need any more information and like to go for coaching for Day 1 and or for full exam, please visit my website www.beyond.coach, cell: 16475056648, email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Beyond Accounting Coaching Services…Paresh Desai CPA-CGA, CMA (USA) FCMA(India)