Compliance Managers


Education and Training Requirements

High School

A good foundation for compliance management work includes classes in math, government, history, ethics, and business. Strong writing and speaking skills are essential, so be sure to take English, communications, and public speech classes. Computer classes are also recommended because much of the work day is spent using various software programs to study and analyze data and create reports. Foreign language classes may also be useful for working with companies overseas.

Postsecondary Education

Most compliance managers have a bachelor's degree. Employers may prefer to hire compliance managers with a degree in their industry specialization, such as accounting, finance, economics, or a health care-related field. Many compliance managers have a bachelor's degree in business management and administration. Generally, bachelor's degree courses include business, ethics, English, government, history, humanities, law, math, statistics, and computers. A master's degree may be required for some compliance management positions.

Other Education or Training

The National Society of Compliance Professionals, Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics, Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals, and the Health Care Compliance Association all provide continuing education opportunities at their annual conferences and other educational venues. Contact these organizations for more information.

Certification, Licensing, and Special Requirements

Certification or Licensing

Compliance managers may receive voluntary certification to expand their knowledge and skills and show employers that they have achieved a certain level of competency in their profession. The International Association of Risk and Compliance Professionals offers certification programs for the following designations: Certified Risk and Compliance Management Professional, Certified Information Systems Risk and Compliance Professional, Certified Risk and Compliance Management Professional in Insurance and Reinsurance, and Certified Cyber (Governance Risk and Compliance) Professional. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Institute at Wharton offers the Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional program for business and compliance professionals, practicing attorneys, and foreign, federal, and state securities regulators. The Compliance Certification Board offers certification programs for compliance professionals in various industries and specialty areas. Find more information on its Web site at

Experience, Skills, and Personality Traits

A bachelor's degree and three or more years of work-related experience is usually required for compliance manager jobs. Strong knowledge of government and laws, business and management principles, and English language skills are required for monitoring the activities of companies, identifying compliance issues, and communicating information with business executives and employees. Compliance managers use computers daily in their work. Common software programs include analytic or scientific software, compliance software, project management software, as well as e-mail and Internet browser software. People who fit well in this field are critical thinkers who are also active listeners. They pay close attention to details, are able to analyze information and identify potential compliance problems, are patient and persistent in obtaining information, and are responsible, honest, and ethical in their business practices.