National Credential
Credential: Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)  In-Demand resource  GI Bill resource
Credentialing Agency: American Society of Military Comptrollers (ASMC)

The American Society of Military Comptrollers (ASMC), Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM) is for individuals who demonstrate proficiency in the core aspects of defense financial management. The CDFM certification directly relates to the work done by Department of Defense (DoD) Financial Managers and the knowledge and skills the DoD would like all Financial Managers to have. To earn the CDFM certification, candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent and three years of defense-related financial management experience or an associate's degree or higher and either two years of defense-related financial management experience or four years of Federal Government-related financial management experience. Candidates must pass a written exam.

More information can be found on the certifying agency's website.

Renewal Period: 2 years

Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)

The following Army Occupations provide training and/or experience that contributes to attaining this credential:

Personnel Category Occupation Occupation Type Related As Promotion Points Skill Level Star Proponent Funded Gap Analysis
Enlisted 36B Financial Management Technician MOS some  Promotion Points: This certification has been approved for promotion points. Click for more information.     Proponent FundedFunded  
Enlisted 56M Religious Affairs Specialist MOS some  Promotion Points: This certification has been approved for promotion points. Click for more information.        
Enlisted 68J Medical Logistics Specialist MOS other          
Enlisted 6T Military Auditor ASI some          
Enlisted 7F Chaplain Resources Manager ASI some          
Warrant Officer 920B Supply Systems Technician WOMOS other        

Army Table Legend


Related As

The military occupations shown in this table are related to this credential in one of four ways: Most, Some, or Other.

Most: This credential is directly related to most of the major duties associated with the military occupation (at least 80%). Note that the credential may require additional education, training or experience before you are eligible for it.

Some: This credential is related to some tasks associated with the duties of the military occupation (related 80% to at least one or more critical tasks but less than 80% of all of the entire military occupation). Note that the credential may require additional education, training or experience before you are eligible for it.

Other: This credential is related to this military occupation, but is more advanced or specialized and therefore will likely require additional education, training, or experience.

Promotion Points Promotion Points icon

This credential has been approved for promotion points for this MOS towards promotion to Sergeant and Staff Sergeant. Clicking the Promotion Points icon will open a link to the promotion points fact sheet.

Skill Level Designation

Skill Level I: This skill level consists of all Soldiers in the ranks of Private (pay grade E-1) up to Specialist (pay grade E-4). Time in Service (TIS) is generally between initial entry and four Years of Service (YOS). This skill level is Entry-level positions requiring performance of tasks under direct supervision.

Institutional training:

  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level I
  • Basic Leader Course (BLC)

Skill Level II: This skill level is obtained when promoted to Sergeant (paygrade E-5). TIS is generally between 4-8 YOS. Positions requiring performance of more difficult tasks under general supervision; and in some instances, involving supervision of Soldiers in SL1.

Institutional training:

  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level II
  • Advance Leader Course (ALC)

Skill Level III: This skill level is obtained when promoted to Staff Sergeant (paygrade E-6). TIS is generally between 8-12 YOS. Positions requiring performance of still more difficult tasks and involving first line supervision of Soldiers in SL1 & SL2.

Institutional training:

  • Senior Leader Course (SLC)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level III

Skill level IV: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Sergeant First Class (paygrade E-7). TIS is generally between 12-18 YOS. Positions requiring relatively detailed knowledge of all tasks specified for a given MOS, normally involving first-line supervision of Soldiers in SLs 1, 2, and 3, and involving managerial duties.

Institutional training:

  • Master Leader Course (MLC)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level IV
  • Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education (SEJPME) I Course

Skill level V: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Master Sergeant (paygrade E-8). TIS is generally between 18-22 YOS. Positions requiring direct and indirect leadership roles with expertise in company and battalion-level operations and competency across a given CMF, serving as members of a staff at every level in the Army, with a full understanding of the allocation of resources and their utilization in order to accomplish Army functions and missions.

Institutional training:

  • United States Army Sergeants Major Academy (USASMA)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level V

Skill level VI: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Sergeants Major (paygrade E-9). TIS is generally between 22-30 YOS. Positions requiring organizational leadership roles with multi-dimensional expertise in units and teams on division, corps, and Army staffs, integrated with Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational (JIIM) partners with a full understanding of the Force Generation process, operations at all echelons, and how the Army runs.

Star Credential Star icon

Star credentials are MOS enhancing, as designated by the Proponent. MOS enhancing credentials are directly related to an MOS or ASI, are taught either partially or completely as part of a Program of Instruction (POI), and improve the MOS technical proficiency.

Proponent Funded Funded icon

This icon indicates credentials which Soldiers may have funded through their MOS proponent. Some proponents offer credentialing opportunities in conjunction with military training and/or as part of MOS development beyond the training base.

Gap Analysis Has Analysis icon

A detailed analysis comparing the credential requirements to the military occupation has been completed. Click on the gap analysis icon to view the analysis page.

Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)

Eligibility Requirements ()

Note: This credential may have multiple options for becoming eligible. Listed below are the minimum requirements based on the minimum degree required. To view other options, see the Eligibility tab.

  • Credential Prerequisite
  • Experience: 3 years
  • Education: High School Diploma/GED
  • Training
  • Membership
  • Other
  • Fee

Exam Requirements ()

  • Written Exam
  • Oral Exam
  • Practical Exam
  • Performance Assessment

Renewal Period: 2 years

  • Continuing Education
  • Exam
  • Continuing Education OR Exam
  • Fee
  • Other

American Society of Military Comptrollers (ASMC)
415 N Alfred Street
Alexandria, VA  22314
Phone: (703) 549-0360
Fax: (703) 549-3181
Contact Page

Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)

Option 1: Candidates must have a high school diploma (or equivalent) and three years of defense-related financial management experience.

Option 2: Candidates must have an associate's degree or higher and two years of defense-related (or four years of Federal Government-related) financial management experience.

The Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM) credential has the following other requirements:

  • Candidates must adhere to the ASMC Pledge of Professionalism.

Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)

  • Module 1 - Resource Management Environment
    • Government Resource Management Environment
    • Manpower Management
    • Enterprise Risk Management and Internal Controls
    • Fiscal Law
  • Module 2 - Budget and Cost Analysis
    • Defense Budget Process
    • Cost and Economic Analysis
    • Strategic Planning and Org Performance Management
    • Fiscal Law
  • Module 3 - Accounting and Finance
    • Accounting
    • Finance
    • Auditing
    • Fiscal Law
  • Module 4 - Acquisition (Optional)
    • Goals, Strategy and Decision Support
    • Systems Engineering
    • Resource Management
    • Life Cycle Sustainment
    • Human Systems Integration
    • Acquiring Information Technology and National Security Systems
    • Technology Protection
    • Test and Evaluation
    • Decisions, Assessments and Reports
    • Special Management Activities

There are a number of resources available to help you prepare for the Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM) examination:

An additional resource is Safari Books Online, a searchable digital library that provides online access to thousands of books, training videos and conference sessions. See the Educational Resources page here on COOL to learn how to get free access.

Testing for this credential is handled by Pearson VUE. The test centers are located in the U.S. They also have some test centers on military bases.

To find out more, use the following links on the Pearson VUE website:

For more information on the American Society of Military Comptrollers (ASMC) testing process, visit the agency website.

Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM)

Renewal Period: 2 years

The Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM) credential has the following recertification information:

  • The CDFM certification is renewed every two years by adhering to the ASMC Pledge of Professionalism, paying a recertification fee, and completing 80 hours of Continuing Professional Education (CPE), with at least 20 CPEs per year and two CPEs in an ethics-related topic.

    Additional information can be found on the ASMC website.