Financial professionals have a choice of financial courses that they can pursue to further their career, seek promotion, get a pay hike or establish an independent financial business. There are a host of accounting courses available, which you can use to better your professional profile.
The certifications are not the same, which is what makes it even better. The different certifications help arm you with varied knowledge in the field and that adds more value to your qualification and skillsets. Therefore, it is good to have financial courses listed as credentials, behind your name.
CPA and CMA
Certified Management Accountant (CMA) is a well-recognised and popular professional certification course that financial professionals can pursue. The course entails the study of management accounting and financial management. It is like an MBA in accounts. The certification course conducted by the US Institute of Management Accountants is recognised internationally and is of great value.
CMA certified professionals are conversant in fields of analysis, financial planning, professional ethics, decision support and control etc.
On the other hand, the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) course in the US, is the equivalent of the Chartered Accountants (CA) course in India. Since the course covers the International financial reporting standards (IFRS) and Generally accepted accounting Principles (GAAP), CPAs are recognised globally.
Both courses are popular amongst financial professionals in India. However, these are not the only courses that can further your career as a financial professional.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), is the regulating body for Chartered Accountants practising in India. It was founded by the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949.
Chartered Accountants who wish to practice, must register with the ICAI and become its associate members. A chartered accountant who holds a Certificate of Practice (COP) for 5 years or more, can prefix the title FCA (Fellow Chartered Accountant), to their name. Whereas, those chartered accountants who have not yet completed the mandatory 5 years of practice, are entitled to use ACA (Associate Chartered Accountant) or CA (Chartered Accountant) behind their names.
Those desirous of becoming professional CAs must first qualify the CPT (Common Proficiency Test), conducted by ICAI. It is a tough exam to crack, and ambitious candidates are advised to receive coaching at the best CA institute in Kerala before attempting the same. Coaching is essential because it provides knowledge and techniques that strengthen the candidate’s foundation, which helps them in cracking the CPT and in securing a good rank.
CPT is conducted twice a year; it is the first step towards becoming a CA, especially for candidates who do not possess an undergrad degree.
Those who qualify the CPT can enrol for IPCC (Integrated Professional Competence Course), which is the second stage of the procedure, for becoming a CA. Candidates with an undergrad degree can skip the CPT and appear directly for IPCC, through the direct entry scheme.
After you qualify the IPCC you will start a 3-year Articleship, with a Chartered Account firm. This will be a training period, where you will receive hands-on training, which will allow you to get a grasp of the financial nuances, required in the profession. You will be able to appear for the CA Final, after the completion of the articleship.
Preparation for the CA Final requires concentrated efforts and a CA Final training in Ernakulam can boost your efforts.
The ACCA is also among one of the best financial courses, to pursue. It is offered internationally, by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of UK.
The ACCA qualification focuses on international accounting standards, thereby making it internationally relevant. That apart, it also allows the option of studying local taxes, making it relevant to those who wish to practice in India.
IFRS or the International Financial Reporting Standards is a certification course offered by ACCA. IFRS is one of the most valued and reputable qualifications in the field. It is ideal for CAs and company secretaries, and finance managers and chief accountants and other such finance professionals.