A question we’ve often been asked through the years from aspiring CPA candidates is: Do accounting firms give out bonuses for completing the CPA exam, and if so, how much? The answer is, yes, many public accounting firms do throw some money new CPAs’ way for passing all four parts of the exam, but the amount varies by firm. According to the latest Human Resources Report from INSIDE Public Accounting, it’s a good bet newly minted CPAs will receive a bonus somewhere between $2,000 and $3,000.
Of the 226 public accounting firms that participated in the publication’s human resources survey (excluding the Big 4), 84% of them pay a bonus when a staff passes the CPA exam, with the amount of the bonus averaging $2,626.
IPA also found that 36% of firms surveyed said staff have a defined time frame to complete the exam.
However it’s worth noting that one in five professional staff at public accounting firms has no intention of ever taking the CPA exam, according to IPA’s 2021 National Practice Management Report. But one in four professionals say they intend to eventually become a CPA but haven’t sat or passed the exam yet.