Career Opportunities for CA

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By CA Saksham Agarwal

A wide range of career options after CA are available in today’s world.

Chartered accountancy is the core of all business, be it big or small. A chartered accountant’s work involves auditing, taxation, accounting, and financial planning. It can be a very challenging and rewarding job. It will not be wrong to claim that Chartered Accountant’s life is usually full of challenges which certainly call for enormous courage and leadership skills. However, it also provides numerous opportunities to convert dreams into actual reality. To summarize, the life of an average CA is all about respect, leadership, and opportunities.

So below is the list of career options that one can pursue after completing CA for better growth opportunities:-

 

           1. CFA(Chartered Financial Analyst)

CFA is a very good option if you plan to make it big in the investment banking world. Career opportunities after CFA are Portfolio Management, Investment Banking, Equity Research, Research Analysis, Auditing, etc. Salary earned after CFA is also good as compared to many other domestic courses. With CA your career growth will be limited only to India but CFA will open up a lot of global opportunities as well.


         2. ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants)

Pursuing ACCA after completing your CA will broaden your career prospects. By becoming a member of ACCA you’ll be able to work in diverse industries and in MNCs as well. It will give you additional information about UK GAAP, IFRS and international laws which means opportunities in the global market as well.


         3. Practice

This is one of the most challenging aspects which a newly qualified Chartered accountant faces. In today’s competitive world one cannot practice easily as a sole proprietor, due to intense competition, pressure from the client, etc. Another option can also be considered as joining an existing firm (mid-size) as a partner.

     

         4. Pursue Government /civil services

This is the most flexible suited job for people interested in the government-related job, they can aim for doing Civil services course and then attain position like the president of ITAT tribunal (income tax appellate tribunal), SEBI (securities exchange board of India) chairman . This position can be achieved only by working in a government organization for a longer number of years.


          5. Be an entrepreneur

Becoming a successful entrepreneur is certainly dream of every individual. An entrepreneur has to be focused and dedicated to taking his business to great heights. Being an entrepreneur one needs to have innovation skills, creativity, analytical mind, broad mind business tactic etc. In order to start a business one need to work initially to built work experience and be a successful entrepreneur. The mind of entrepreneur should be unique and think about expansion diversification and should aim for growth of business and not merely survival.


         6. Forensic accounting

This field involves Chartered Accountants to investigate cases of insurance, commercial fraud, civil cases and sometimes cases of personal injury. Larger firms usually have a highly specialized department to handle such areas of work, in which job positions are filled by Chartered Accountants.

 

        7. Project Finance/ Financial Advisory/ Mergers & Acquisitions

Although these fields are not exactly alike, there are many similarities in the work you do and thus we will discuss them together. These fields, along with Investment Banking, are popularly considered to be the most glamorous of all profiles a CA can have. Also the fields are very rewarding in terms of job satisfaction and remuneration. A lot of networking needs to be done to generate business. Employers looking to recruit in these areas often look for professionals with additional qualifications like CFA. However, these fields are heavily dependent on market conditions, both, in terms of recruitment and business. There is no guaranteed or recurring business from the same client. In periods of recession, these areas will grow at a very slow rate.Companies have had to let go of employees due to lack of business in times of market depression.


          8. Investment Banking

This is the ‘dream job’ for many fresher CAs. This job requires high level of proficiency in Financial Management and MS Excel. Again, a CFA goes a long way in developing his/her career in Investment Banking. This too has many sub-branches viz. Private Equity, IPO Support, Investment Banking, Portfolio Management, etc. The performance-based remuneration in this field is arguably the highest compare to any other field. But again, this field is heavily affected by market factors. Several of the investment banks have gone bankrupt in times of severe recession. This has resulted in thousands of professionals losing their jobs. Also, this profile has been infamous for very challenging working hours.


           9. Outsourcing

Whenever we come across the term outsourcing, the first thing that comes to our mind is a call center or BPO. But at times it is surprising to see the level of awareness we have regarding the size of the KPO industry and numerous opportunities there are for CAs. The KPO sector is a significant recruiter for CAs. It also provides employment to a lot of students who have completed their articleship and are waiting to clear their final exams. Accounting, taxation, legal, compliances, research, financial data management, documentation, ERP implementation, etc. are just some of the processes that are outsourced by companies in developed countries to outsourcing companies in lesser developed countries. This is a multi-billion dollar industry and is increasingly recruiting more and more CAs. Most big firms also have their own outsourcing units. This industry known for paying handsomely but not for giving an enriching experience in terms of knowledge development and job satisfaction as most of the work is repetitive in nature.

 

            10. Academics

For those who are not interested in taking up a desk job and want to stay in touch with academics, this sector is one of the very good options. One can take up teaching jobs in educational institutions for CAs, commerce graduation coaching classes, certain post-graduation institutes or ICAI. Also, this need not even be a full-time thing. You may get into academics along with your job/practice. There is also the option of starting up your own coaching institution with a very reasonable investment. Several of my batch mates are either working in the institute we studied at or have started their own institutes. If I share their experience, job satisfaction in this sector is tremendous. It may not be financially rewarding in the initial stages, but in the long run, it is at par or at times even better than any other sector.

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