Commercial Essentials Certificate

Gain a vital grounding in a broad range of financial issues and build better client relations.

Created for advertising and marketing practitioners by the IPA Finance Business Group. Build better client relations, negotiate more effectively, and understand how best to maximise the link between creativity and profitability.

Who is this qualification for?

An essential qualification applicable to all agency staff, especially for anyone in a client-facing role who is keen to develop their commercial acumen.

Reminder: to achieve IPA CPD Agency Accreditation, 10% of agency staff must hold either LegRegs Certificate or Commercial Certificate or both.

If you are based in Australia, please visit Commercial Certificate (Australia).

What are the benefits?

Completing the Commercial Certificate will allow you to:

  • Gain a full understanding of the roles, responsibilties and processes in the finance department.
  • Get to grips with KPIs and fee payment structures.
  • Learn by example the financial processes within different agency departments including media specific issues.
  • Discover a new found confidence when negotiating or complying with the terms of a contract.
  • Build better relationships with your clients by understanding the financial terminology they use.

How is the qualification delivered and assessed?

  • 10 hours of online learning accessible through the IPA website on any device, or via the IPA Learning app.
  • Formal 30-minute multiple choice exam.
  • If you pass the exam, you will be awarded a digital certificate of completion and 1 MIPA star towards personal accreditation.

How do you book onto and access the qualification?

Please select your intake from the ‘Intakes’ drop down on this page and proceed to checkout.

Once booked, you can access and start your online learning via the IPA website. To access, please head to your personal IPA portal via the profile icon and click on ‘Training’. Or, visit your personal Training page here.

Non members must complete this qualification by 31 December of their intake year.

Free Learning for IPA Members

The Commercial Certificate is free for IPA members. There is no completion deadline for IPA members, unless one has been set for you by your employer.


  • Members: Free
  • Non-Members: £250 + VAT

If you are purchasing the Certificate as a business based outside of the UK and believe you should not be charged VAT on the sale, please get in touch with If your business is based in the EU, we will ask you to confirm your VAT number before making your booking. This VAT number will be recorded as part of your sale transaction. If your business is based outside the EU, we will ask for further evidence of your business location.


The Commercial Certificate Qualification Policies are applicable to all bookings.

We operate a 14-day cancellation policy. Please view the Qualification Policies for further details.

For more information, please email

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