group of people

ESMA knowledge & competence requirements

Background on IMC

The IMC is the investment profession’s benchmark entry-level qualification. With over 5,000 exam sittings a year, the IMC is used by leading investment management firms to demonstrate employee knowledge and competence for regulatory purposes, and by individuals working across all areas of the sector in developing their careers. The IMC is an FCA Appropriate Qualification for the activity of ‘managing investments’ and CFA UK is the awarding organisation.


Using the IMC to meet ESMA knowledge and competence requirements

The IMC provides broad coverage of the ESMA criteria for knowledge and competence. However, it is up to firms to determine the level and intensity of knowledge and competence required of their staff. This should be proportionate in its application and reflect the scope and degree of relevant services being provided. A qualification will not cover firm specific factors (such as product characteristics, risks and features) and many firms are approaching these requirements through internal training.


Please see below for further information.


Information giving and the IMC

Investment advice and the IMC


Detailed mapping of IMC to the MiFID II / ESMA knowledge and competence requirements can be found here.


Continuing Professional Development

The ESMA guidelines require firms to carry out an internal or external review on at least an annual basis of staff members’ development needs, and to ensure staff update and maintain their knowledge through continuing professional development (CPD). CFA UK is an advocate of lifelong learning as a core component of becoming a competent investment professional and offers a variety of highly-rated CPD resources to members and firms.


This includes an excellent events Programme, practical online courses developed by investment professionals, and a wide selection of market insights, technical updates and opinion pieces in video, article and podcast format.


CFA UK Membership 

Those who have passed the IMC are able to become members of CFA UK and obtain free access to all CPD resources and logging tools. CFA UK membership is also open to CFA candidates, CFA charterholders and those with more than one year of relevant work experience.


Find Out More

To arrange a meeting to discuss how the IMC can be used to meet the needs of your employees, and how CFA UK can support you in your ESMA Knowledge and Competency journey, please contact:


Christina Curtin:

Shaheen Verjee, CFA: