Finding the right job that suits your caliber and credentials has been a tough ride since the global pandemic. It was observed that many experienced professionals broadened their horizons and utilized the lockdown period to hone their careers by pursuing quality certifications. Amongst all, CISA certification had been one of the top choices in the Information Technology and Information Systems as the job opportunities after CISA offer a mass exposure in the career.

CISA stands for Certified Information System Auditor. It has proven to be highly beneficial to the practitioners and professionals of the audit IT/IS field since it is a leading certification provided under the governance of ISACA. The CISA certification holder is seen to be a skilled auditor, carving a niche in the field and demonstrating abilities to assess vulnerabilities and risk in the Information System of the company, ensuring effective and accurate compliance reports, working on the structure of the control of the security system, hence regulating the cyber threats and forgeries.

Is CISA a good career?

As we make our minds follow a particular career path, the algorithm we follow specifically focuses on the 3 major questions related to salary, scope and market value. Interestingly, these terms are co-related and often, proportional to each other. Presently, with the advancement of humankind in the Information Technology sector, it is evident that techno-savvy professionals are high in demand. Along with the realm, there is a greater vulnerability of cyber-threat for which effective IT control measures have to be ensured to meet the essential compliance requirements of the firms. And for this, the company rely on someone with well-equipped skills and practice to handle the crisis and further protect, manage and develop the important information assets of the company. Here, CISA plays an integral role to highlight the acquired expertise in the field to the employers. Hence, the scope and market value of CISA is enormous in the current time and would continue to boon as per the speculated calculations. The scope and market value of a career is directly proportional to the salary offered by the companies as the higher scope and market value leads to a high pay by the companies, it is as simple as that. So, to ask us if CISA is a good career or not, we would give a thumbs up to that!

Who can do the CISA course?

Now, before we share the insights about the CISA scope, our audience needs to know that CISA Certification is not just meant for the IS and IT auditors, it has a wider career in the field of IT which is often unrevealed. Hence, job opportunities for CISA have many un-knocked doors while it gives a significant advantage to auditors. So, even if you’re an IT analyst, we would recommend you to undergo CISA training to lift the standards of work and prove your credibility in the IT auditing and risk management domain. The only eligibility criteria for pursuing the CISA Certification is that the professional should have a minimum of 5 years of experience in the related field to be aware of the CISA syllabus and CISA training programme formalities.

Domains of CISA Certification:

There are specific domains under which the employees are required to portray their workability. These domains offer specific roles under the IT/IS Audit process and one has to make sure that they earn a feather in the cap while they pursue the CISA Certification. The CISA job practice areas have been divided typically into 5 major domains, namely:

1. INFORMATION SYSTEMS AUDITING PROCESS

The employees generally audit the information systems in line with the IT audit standards to detect the crucial fragile points to further protect and control the information assets of the company. It is also required by the employee to be skilled at development, implementation, and researching the risk-based IT audit strategy. The key areas of this process are:

  • Management of  the IS Audit Function
  • ISACA IT Audi and Assurance Standards and Guidelines
  • Risk Analysis
  • Internal Controls
  • Performing an IS Audit
  • Control Self-Assessment
  • The Evolving IS Audit Process

2. GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT OF IT

This domain generally deals with assuring the coordinated working in the IT organizational structure and processes. Employees are asked to make sure whether the IT governance structure, organizational structure, HR management, and policies and standards are fit in their place to make decisions on further strategies and controls. The key areas of this domain can be listed as:

  • Corporate Governance
  • IT Governance (ITG)
  • Information Technology Monitoring and Assurance Practices for Board and Senior Management
  • Information Systems Strategy
  • Maturity and Process Improvement Models
  • IT Investment and Allocation Practices
  • Policies and Procedures
  • Risk Management
  • IS management Practices (and 5 sub-areas under this as well)
  • IS Organizational Structure and Responsibilities
  • Auditing IT Governance Structure and Implementation
  • Business Continuity Planning
  • Auditing Business Continuity

3. INFORMATION SYSTEMS ACQUISITION, DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION: HERE, IN THIS DOMAIN

IT auditors are required to assure the acquisition, development, testing, and implementation field of IS to further meet the strategies and vision of the company. This domain focuses on project management and business management/realization roles which have to be catered fruitfully. The major tasks revolve around the evaluation of proposed investments in IS acquisition, development, maintenance, and subsequent retirement, evaluating project management practices and controls and conducting reviews. The areas which fall under this domain and have to be carefully studied are:

  • Business Realization
  • Project Management Structure
  • Project Management Practices
  • Business Application Development
  • Business Application Systems
  • Alternative Forms of Software Project Organization
  • Alternative Development Methods
  • Infrastructure Development/ Acquisition Practices
  • Information Systems Maintenance Practices
  • System Development Tools and Productivity Aids
  • Process Improvement Practices
  • Application Controls
  • Auditing Application Controls
  • Auditing Systems Development, Acquisition and Maintenance

4. INFORMATION SYSTEMS OPERATIONS AND BUSINESS RESILIENCE:

This domain deals with assuring the company that information systems operations and processes, their necessary maintenance, and vital support system is aligned with the firm’s business plans. Here, the key objective is to ensure that the cases of disaster recovery, data loss are rectified and managed to prevent further loss. There are typically 6 areas of this domain that one needs to take care of:

  • Information Systems Operations
  • Information Systems Hardware
  • IS Architecture and Software
  • IS Network Infrastructure
  • Auditing Infrastructure and Operations
  • Disaster Recovery Planning

5. PROTECTION OF INFORMATION ASSETS:

The last domain specifically deals with assurance related to the security policies, standards, procedures, and controls of the company. It becomes the ethical responsibility of the employees to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and further availability of information assets of the company. It also includes the evaluation role of information security policies, standards and procedures. Also, designing, implementing, and monitoring the system and logical security controls, data classification processes, and physical access and environmental controls are the areas for which the employees are held accountable. The areas that are covered in this domain are:

  • Importance of Information Security Management
  • Logical Access
  • Network Infrastructure Security
  • Auditing Information Security Management Framework
  • Auditing Network Infrastructure Security
  • Environmental Exposures and Controls
  • Physical Access Exposures and Controls
  • Mobile Computing

CISA Jobs:

As you have seen that the described domains ensure the various roles and responsibilities of an IT/IS auditor, it would not be wrong to say that this further broadens the CISA scope in terms of job opportunities. CISA specifically deals with jobs in IT audit, cloud security, web application, penetration testing, network security, API security testing and vulnerability assessment. So, the VARIOUS JOB PROFILES THAT ONE CAN ENTER/ EXCEL IN AFTER PURSUING CISA CERTIFICATION CAN BE LISTED AS:

  • Internal auditor
  • Public accounting auditor
  • IS analyst
  • IT audit manager
  • IT project manager/auditor
  • IT security officer
  • Network operation security engineer
  • Cybersecurity professional
  • IT consultant
  • IT risk and assurance manager
  • Privacy officer

CISA Salary:

To back the career, monetary benefits associated with your chosen career plays a very important role. This keeps you motivated to excel and further explore the field of Information Technology and Information Systems. Though, the CISA salary would vary as per the CISA job description, location, company, position and experience, the average salary for CISA Certification holders is expected to be from $52,459 to $122,325 per year. So, here is another reason why CISA certification jobs can offer a plus point in comparison to other jobs.

Conclusion:

Every job has a great scope in today’s high-paced world. It is the candidate that decides the exposure of the field he has stepped in. Specifically for CISA jobs, the candidates are required to be prepared for a challenging role. For this CISA Certification can be the best option to instil the skills, leadership qualities and confidence to earn yourself a big shot! Feel free to reach out to us if you look for CISA related guidance.