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October 03,2020

10 amazing additional course options you can do along with CA?

Students have a lot of courses that they can pursue along with CA. Some of the courses specified may be certification courses or diploma courses. They will give you a big boost to your career

ACCA

It is a fast-growing international accountancy certification with 2,00,000 members. They have over 4,86,000 students in more than 180 countries. As a globally recognised education, ACCA is an amazing option for students who want to build a career in Accounts and finance. Students can pursue this along with the graduation such as B.com. One of the most attractive features about ACCA is their examination scheme which makes it even more attractive. 

Students who pursue ACCA can

  • earn a Diploma/Advanced Diploma in Accounting and Business and go on to earn an ACCA Member status
  • earn a BSc. (Hons) degree in Applied Accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University
  • get an MSc in Professional Accountancy awarded by University of London

ACCA offers students who have previously completed CA or other relevant accounting qualification to get exemptions. Which means that you don’t have to start the course at the Knowledge level.

CFA 

The combination of CA along with CFA is great if you want to foray into investment banking and portfolio management. CFA is an internationally approved and required certification that will give a wide knowledge of investment management as well as portfolio management skills which is the basis of the investment industry. CFA certification is provided by the body called Chartered Financial Analysts of India or from the CFA Institute of USA. In sectors such as banking and insurance, CFA holds high value. The exams are conducted in 4 windows through the year and can be pursued by any CA aspirant. 

FRM : Financial Risk Management

The designation is offered by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP) and is the globally recognized standard for those who manage risk. An FRM who is certified is a part of an elite, global network and are valued by top employers across various businesses. Requiring the successful completion of a rigorous two-part, practice-oriented examination, the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) designation provides a bedrock foundation in a profession and industry that is rapidly evolving. Since the FRM Program’s inception in 1997, Certified FRMs have achieved positions such as Chief Risk Officer, Senior Risk Analyst, Head of Operational Risk, and Director of Investment Risk Management, to name a few.

FRM can be pursued:

  • By those who want to work in the finance field and want to climb up the success ladder.
  • Who wants to develop a career in the risk management domain.

CIA (USA) - Certified Internal Auditor 

A CIA program is provided by the Institute of Internal Auditors – USA. A person who has this qualification can then be a master in the domain of Internal Audit.  There are centres all across the nation for students who wish to pursue the course. The exam is in an online mode and you can give the exam any time during the year. This course is ideal for those who wish to grow their career as an internal auditor. You will get a wide knowledge of GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) and SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley Act).

CPA - Certified Public Accountant

The certification is given by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the course is mandatory if you wish to practice as a Public Accountant in the US. A CA with a CPA can work in various domains such as Assurance services, Forensic Accounting, Tax and Financial Planning, International Accounting, Internal and External Auditing etc. In India there are various American companies which prefer a candidate with CPA qualification and knowledge of US GAAP.

CS - Company Secretary

Pursuing CS alongside CA is great in the long run to get the best opportunities in the management level. CS is a great combination with CA so that one can understand the corporate environment. Being a CA, if you earn a qualification of a company secretary, then you can easily and confidently handle secretarial work/department along with managing account related work/finance department.

SAP - System Analysis Program Development

 SAP has a large range of features and the implementation of SAP will change from one company to the other. As there are many implementation issues various companies such as Accenture, IBM etc came up with the solution of SAP. There are various modules of SAP such as Human Resources, Production Planning,  Project Management, Treasury, FI (Financial Accounting), CO (Controlling/Management Accounting) etc. As Chartered Accountants, the core areas of competency in SAP are FI and CO (commonly referred to as SAP FICO).

For a Chartered Accountant involved in financial accounting, statutory reporting,  costing, taxation (direct and indirect) etc, the modules which are most relevant are SAP FI (Financial Accounting) and SAP CO (Controlling/Management Accounting). A qualified Chartered Accountant can choose to be an SAP Consultant or to be a certified SAP Auditor or to be into the Finance team of an organisation having SAP ERP or be a certified SAP Trainer. The options are endless. Although the training in SAP is advised it's not mandatorily required, it increases the chances of getting hired. There are various sets of certifications & training for SAP FI & SAP CO.

Financial Modeling

Financial modelling is a must-have skill, especially for the ones who want to pursue a career in mergers and acquisitions (M&A), investment banking, equity research, project finance etc. FM will help you to be great at making spreadsheets and it will also aid you to use your technical knowledge to prepare financial models for various purposes. If a CA wishes to go into practice, then financial modelling will be a skill that will help them to be prolific in preparing financial reports for clients that are seeking funds.

The main reason why Chartered Accountants learn financial modelling is so that they aren’t restricted to Accounting, Auditing and taxation. They are exploring other areas such as research, analysis, project finance manager, forex analyst etc. Lucrative compensation of these profiles as well as the lower passing percentage of Chartered Accountancy exams has led most CAs to step out of the stereotypic roles to more challenging ones.

CPF - Certified Financial Planner

For those who are keen on having a financial planning career, the CFP is a perfect choice. The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) is an extra certification that will sharpen your skills to aid your clients into building a successful portfolio and planning their wealth & investments wisely. Nowadays there are a lot of investment options that are available, investors require someone who will guide them with the right option that will help them to achieve the objective with the resources that are available. 

CFE - Certified Fraud Examiner 

A fraud examiner is someone who will identify fraud and other types of financial records, analyzing financial transactions and conducting forensic audits. The fraud examiner works for banks and other financial institutions, state and federal law enforcement agencies, and legal and accounting firms. Like other types of investigators, they may also work in private practice as independent consultants for a variety of different clients.

 

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