Skills That Every Accounting firm is Looking for in A Chartered Accountant

It’s no secret that CA certifications have some of the toughest qualifying examinations in the world. But we also know that it’s all well worth the effort. Qualifying as an ACCA-certified chartered accountant puts you in a select group of highly respected and sought-after professionals with unlimited career opportunities across industry verticals.

While this still holds true, with increasing digitization, transforming financial environments, and evolving workplace mechanics, how enterprises and accounting firms perceive the role of chartered accountants in their teams and the skills they require from their ACCAs are changing. This means that the knowledge and skills you gain during your exam preparation and from your CA coaching centre, while advantageous, might no longer be enough.

We explore a few skills that will not only help you function well in the modern workplace, but also help you build a successful and fulfilling career as a chartered accountant.

  • Communication Skills

There is often a misconception among people that accountants need only be bothered about numbers. But the ability to communicate effectively with clients and offer sound financial information and advice with absolute clarity is a very important skill for all CA professionals. In fact, effective communication skills are an unparalleled advantage not just across industries but in all areas of your professional and personal life.

  • Professional Skills

The term “professional skills” combines a whole array of business and social skills that will help you succeed in your profession and contribute positively to the culture and development of the enterprise. These include everything from your ability to collaborate across teams to building long term relationships both within and outside the company. No matter where you stand in its structure, how you engage with your work and stakeholders will affect your organization as a whole.

  • Analytical Skills

Analytical skills are what set great CAs apart from the rest. In the age of big data, the ability to analyse and interpret this large volume of information to derive valuable growth-oriented insights is very important for any financial professional. Analytical skills will also help professionals develop innovative and strategic solutions for pressing issues. Of course, it is important to note that these skills can only be built upon a foundation of sound financial knowledge and training in accountancy.

  • Continuous Learning

The training that starts at your CA coaching centre should continue throughout your career. In today’s fast transforming financial ecosystem, it is critically important for a financial professional to continuously evolve and stay updated with the latest in what’s going on in the global landscape. This ability to develop yourself and your knowledge base will not only save you from becoming obsolete, but it will also help you maintain a level of fascination and interest in your job over the long term.

Every CA aspirant should make attempts to develop these skills and habits to ensure that they present themselves as a lucrative employee for international enterprises. It will not only give you a competitive advantage among your peers, but will also help you serve your clients best. The right CA coaching centre will be able to guide you towards understanding these skills and develop them, even as you are training and studying for your exams.

 

CMA or CPA: Which One Should You Choose?

Students of Accounting and Finance often have a tough time choosing between Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Management Accountant (CMA) certifications. Both are of equal value – the deciding factor is the type of career path you want to take. Here are the points you need to consider before choosing to go for CPA coaching or CMA coaching.

Type of Enterprise

If you foresee a career in a public enterprise, then the CPA certification is for you. But if you, like many students, wish to join a private or corporate industry, then a CMA credential is ideal.

Scope

While the CPA designation is exclusive to the US, the CMA is a globally recognised designation. Indian students who wish to pursue an accounting career in the United States may opt for a CPA, while those who desire to pursue global financial management positions are good candidates for a CMA.

Salary

Factors like experience, job title, industry and location determine the salary that CMAs and CPAs can earn. CPAs on an average tend to earn 15% more than non CPAs whereas CMAs tend to earn 60% than non-CMA professionals.

Core Strengths

If your core skills are in the areas of compliance and regulation, taxes, audits, attestation and reporting, then you should consider going for a CPA. If your focus is in the areas of corporate finance, reporting, planning and decision making, a CMA might be the qualification you need.

Benefits

While CMA and CPA are highly valued certifications, they have different advantages. CPA is seen as highly desirable for both public and corporate enterprises in the US and offers more options. But a CMA qualification provides a practical, ground-based approach to accounting and finance and can demonstrate that you have a head for business as well as accounting.

Requirements

According to the American Institute for CPA’s, the representative body for the CPA profession, you’ll need a four years bachelor’s degree or equivalent qualification in accounting and business related courses and a couple of years under the supervision of a qualified CPA. Aspiring CMAs require a bachelor’s degree and two years of management accounting or financial management, along with membership in the Institute of Management Accountants.

Whichever certification you choose, it will be a substantial investment in your future career. Choose wisely and work hard.