- What is Chartered Accountancy and what are the career opportunities?
A booming financial sector and the growing importance of financial parameters in all aspects of business have made chartered accountancy a much sought-after career. With rapid growth in the Indian economy, chartered accountants are in great demand. Chartered accountants usually absorb esteemed and respectable posts in an organisation. They are the ones responsible for handling accounts and finance management, deal with money management, plan, analyse and review accounts along with providing financial counsel.
There are three levels of chartered accountancy course in India.
- Common Proficiency Test is an entry-level programme. In this programme a student can appear for CPT after the Senior Secondary Examination or Plus II.
- The second stage is Professional Competence Course (PCC), articled training, and 100 hours of Information Technology Training (ITT).
- The third level is the Final Course to which students are registered only after they clear PCC. Students have other options also like General Management and Communication Skills Course (GMSC). After clearing, the final examination students are entitled to get registered with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India to become certified CAs.
Students with economics and commerce background are mainly suited in terms of basic knowledge and skills, while students from any other discipline can also take up the CA programme. Commerce graduates with 50 per cent marks, non-commerce graduates with subjects other than mathematics with an aggregate of 55 per cent marks, and non-commerce graduates studying maths with an aggregate of 60 per cent marks are eligible.
To add the tag of CA to your name, you need to pass the final exam of chartered accountancy and be registered as a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. The professional course of a chartered accountant is of five years’ duration and is a blend of theoretical education and practical training with reputed CAs so that students gain knowledge as well as specialised skills in this field.
The CA course is conducted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), which has its headquarters in New Delhi. It has five regional offices at Mumbai, Kolkata, Madras, Kanpur and New Delhi with 87 branch offices across the country.
Professional CAs has the option to be appointed as examiner of companies. They can also serve as financial managers and corporate consultants. This type of job profile is becoming more and more profitable nowadays. It involves Financial Accounting, which includes operating accounts, supervising, controlling and organising income and expenditure and coping with taxes. CAs can also opt for private audit as a choice of their profession. It involves validating books and accounts and issuing certificate about the company’s financial status.
The other areas of consultancy are cost accounting that comprises managing out cost effectiveness of a particular operation and diminish costs and future forecasting.
Tax Management is another type of consultancy opted by CAs. It requires minimisation of incidence of direct and indirect taxes using legal means. Besides this, CAs often provide consultancy services in the fields of finance and accounts. They can efficiently provide services in areas like corporate law counsel, project planning and finance, merger and business advice.
With the introduction of VAT, a number of CAs are opting for it. According to the new regulations in the banking sector, the demand for CAs has already gone high in this sector. One can also enter the insurance and banking review sector after doing a Diploma in Insurance and Risk Management (DIPM) and Computer-Aided Audit Techniques (CAAT).
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India is the summit regulator of this profession in India.
Besides, there are other institutes that offer CA courses. These include the Badruka Institute of Professional Studies, Kachiguda (AP); J.G. College of Commerce, Ahmadabad; Allahabad Degree Collage, UP; Agrawal P.G. College, Haryana; A.V.S. College of Arts and Commerce, Salem and many more. Remuneration
Chartered accountancy is a profession where returns are very high in all public, private sector or own consultancy firm. Salaries of CAs employed in public or private sector companies vary depending upon qualification and experience. Average salaries at junior level are Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000 per month,while a senior CA can expect to get Rs 50,000 to Rs 80,000 per month in domestic markets. For those working abroad the salaries may go up to Rs 5 lakh per month. Chartered Accountants who are engaged in consultancy and private practice are also earning handsome amount depending upon the numbers and kinds of clients they are handling.