1. What prompted you to become certified?
Initially, I was driven by the need to support my knowledge and experience with a valid, well-known certification that was accepted worldwide and highly acknowledged. However, one year later, and as a current CIA, I can proudly say that I didn’t become a CIA just for better pay or to get a better job. I did this for myself, and I learned several lessons along the way — that I am more dedicated than I give myself credit for; that effort reduces the risk of failure and increases the likelihood of success, and as such, is a great investment of your time; that consistency is key to anything you want to master and succeed at (after all, practice does make perfect); that discipline will empower you to improve anything about yourself; that motivation teaches you to not limit your challenges, but instead, challenge your limits; that you should only do things with passion, or not do them at all. I can now see how far I can go by being the best of myself.
2. What IIA certification(s) do you hold, and why did you choose to pursue it (them)? Do you plan to pursue other IIA certifications, and if so, which ones and why?
Having just completed the CIA, I decided to take advantage of passing part I of the CIA (a prerequisite for taking the CRMA), and I signed up for the CRMA. The CRMA is extremely relevant to internal auditors, since our most important job is to make sure that the companies (for which we perform value-added activities have a robust, up-to-date risk assessment program.
3. How does having an IIA certification(s) set you apart from your non-certified peers?
We live in a very competitive professional world. Those who obtain certifications are not set apart just because they hold them, but also in recognition of the hard work and dedication it took to go through the journey of exam preparation while juggling other priorities such as work, family, etc. Being certified proves determination, persistence, and the willingness to continue improving one’s repertoire
4. How has your IIA certification(s) helped your career?
It has not been very long since I became certified; however, as soon as I obtained my CIA, I posted my accomplishment on LinkedIn and received amazing support from my community. I also noticed that my network expanded and I was able to inspire others to get certified and seek help when they needed it. Others commented how I inspired them to pursue the certification.
5. Has earning the IIA certification(s) enhanced your skill level?
Since I have been in the profession for quite some years, I am unsure if it has improved my skill level. However, I often find myself quoting a lot of the material I reviewed when I was preparing to take the test.
6. What advice do you have for others who are considering obtaining an IIA certification?
- Do not give up; persistence is key to success.
- Make sure that the time you spend preparing for the exams is well-managed and allows you to absorb the material effectively.
- Know yourself; study in ways that you know work for you — whether it is audio, reading, Q&A, etc.
- Do not memorize the material; sometimes it is better to study for longer because you are fully digesting the substance and concept of the material.
- Apply your knowledge at work; question your internal audit programs, risk assessment, governance structure, etc.
7. How does career planning and development play a part in your growth?
Career planning and development play a very significant role in my growth. These are key elements to make sure that a particular individual stands out from the crowd and anticipates potential roadblocks, upcoming regulation, etc. Planning and development are key elements that will allow for my continuous growth.
8. What’s the best career advice you’ve ever received?
If you do what you love, and you pair it with persistence, passion, and determination, you will effectively succeed.
Janine Wolman was born in Montevideo, Uruguay, and moved to Miami, Florida with her family in 2001. She enthusiastically pursued the American dream and her strong passion for accounting, earning both bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Since then, she has been extremely involved in the community and is currently vice president of programs for The IIA’s Miami chapter. Janine enjoys promoting the internal audit function and the value that it is meant to bring to all relevant stakeholders. She also enjoys several extracurricular activities such as dancing, exercising, traveling, most outdoor activities, and spending time with friends and family.
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About the CIA
As the only globally recognized certification for internal auditors and The IIA’s flagship credential for more than 40 years, the CIA sets the standard for excellence in the profession. Learn more.