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The Certification Process

The Experience Requirement

The experience requirement prepares you to provide personal financial planning to the public as a CFP® professional. There are many ways to satisfy this requirement, and experience may be gained before or after you take the CFP® exam. Ultimately, you must complete 6,000 hours of professional experience related to the financial planning process, or 4,000 hours of apprenticeship experience that meets additional requirements.

Hear more about the experience requirement for CFP® certification and the different ways you can gain experience to become a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional.


Gaining Your Experience

There are 2 ways for candidates to fulfill the experience requirement for CFP® certification: the 6,000 Hour Standard Pathway or the 4,000 Hour Apprenticeship Pathway. You can earn qualifying experience in a number of ways, from engaging with clients directly to supporting the financial planning process to teaching financial planning-related courses.

The pathways to experience

Report Experience Anytime

Get ahead of the game. You can report your experience at any time through the online Experience Reporting Profile available in your CFP Board Account Dashboard. You will be able to review previously submitted entries, update hours for your current position and enter new experience.

Report Your Experience

Start your journey to CFP® Certification

  • Track your progress with the CFP® Certification Tracker
  • Post your resume at the Career Center
  • Connect with a mentor who can guide you
  • Register and prepare for the exam
  • Find career and financial support
  • Connect with other candidates at our online forum