You’ve now become a CA.
You can add CA as a prefix to your name. 😊
But CA ______, what should you do afterwards?
What are your career options after becoming a CA?
Well, you’ve got quite a broad choice. You can choose to take up practice or take up employment. You could even continue with your education!
It depends on you. And what you want to do.
Let’s look at each choice in turn and what it entails.
Starting Independent Professional Practice
This is not an easy path. You’ll have to gain knowledge in a broad number of areas. We suggest that you take up such a practice only if you possess the necessary temperament. We also think that if you pursued articleship from small to mid-sized firm, only then should you consider this option seriously.
As we said, it’s not easy. You’ll have to put in a lot of time, money and effort. You should have a broad network of people. (You can use the time spent during your articleship phase to build this broad network.) Not only that, you’ll need to have a business mindset. To sum up:
Entrepreneurial spirit + broad skillset + large network + time and money investment = successful independent practice
When you take up independent professional practice, you’ll provide many services. And you will have to shoulder a large amount of responsibility under various legislations. Some of the responsibilities include compulsory audit of the accounts of companies, banks, cooperative societies, stock brokers, big income tax assesses, large bank borrowers, etc. As for the services you provide? Well, they include (but are not limited to) compilation and review services, auditing, tax related services, business advice, preparation of financial reports, etc.
As you can see, you’ll have your hands full. And you’ll work in many broad areas. Quite a challenge!
We invite you to look at the end of our post on how to become an outstanding chartered accountant in India for more options.
Taking Up Employment
This is the choice of many CA. In one sense it’s easier than starting out on your own. That is, you don’t have to start from scratch. But in another sense, it might be more difficult. You don’t get to be your “own boss.”
There are several employment options:
- Joining the corporate world: You can enter into the finance and accounting departments of companies. You could take up auditing. Tax auditing. Perhaps financial reporting is more your cup of tea. Maybe you want to get into fund management. Or even investment planning. Or you may deal with merges! A wide variety of options to choose from.
- Working in the banking sector: You can join a bank to work in the domain of finance. Forecasting, funding, strategies, etc. You can also use this experience to enter into the corporate world
- Working in the industry or Government service: You can join an industry or government organisation. You could work as a business advisor by developing, analysing and reporting on information needed for business decisions
- Working as a global accountant: You can choose to render your services in the area of financial reporting globally. Avert or detect fraud by scanning financial statements of big MNCs. You could also work as a valuer valuating assets and liabilities
- Working in the educational sector: You could work as an educator for colleges and universities. You could even set up your own educational centre!
Continuing with Your Education
You can choose to continue your education. Or you could take up other professional qualifications if needed. That is, take up courses that act as a complement to the main CA course. Here is a list of some post qualification courses offered by ICAI as of January 2019:
- Diploma in Insurance and Risk Management (DIRM)
- Information Systems Audit (ISA)
- International Trade Laws & World Trade Organisation (ITL & WTO)
- Management Accountancy Course (MAC)/ Corporate Management Course (CMC)/ Tax Management Course (TMC)
- Post Qualification Diploma in International Taxation
For more information, we invite you to look at the ICAI website.
If you want to add to your knowledge base, you could take up CS and/or CMA qualifications depending on your interest and future diversification plans.
You might also want to take up an MBA. We suggest that you take such a degree up from top-level universities.
And if you are research oriented, you might want to pursue a Phd. Around 100 Indian Universities, including several IITs and IIMs recognise a CA degree as equivalent to a post graduate degree for application purposes.
As you can see, for a qualified CA, there are many choices. From own practice to seeking out employment opportunities to even continue with education. Do your own research on what works best for you.
Good luck and all the best!
If you are interested in pursuing other certifications, why don’t you keep an eye on our website? We’ll be releasing our training modules on CISA shortly. Stay tuned.