Careers

Chartered Accountant Career Path: All You Need To Know

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Are you good with numbers, and you love advising people on financial decisions? Becoming a Chartered Accountant can be a good career option for you. Discover all about Chartered Accountant career path, lifestyle & job role from Pune-based CA with 6 years of experience.

CA-Manish-Kumar

1. Chartered Accountant Career Path: What Does a Chartered Accountant Do?

The day to the day job role of a Chartered Accountant involves auditing, financial planning, accounting, and looking into tax and sales of a company or individuals. As a working professional, you can either practise on your own or take up a job. I did the latter as it saves me from the hassle of setting up my own firm.

Contents: Jump to Section

1.1 Industry/Sector
1.2 Social Image
1.3 Reasons to Become a Chartered Accountant
2.1 Personality Traits Required
2.2 Physical Demands
2.3 Psychological Demands
3.1 Extra Curricular Activities Recommended
3.2 Related Hobbies to Take Up
3.3 Related Movies/ TV Shows
3.4 Related Fiction to Read/ Novels
4.1 Part-Time Options
4.2 Traveling Required
4.3 Average Workday/What to Expect
5.1 Retirement Prospects
5.2 Threats from Automation
5.3 Common Reasons for People to Quit

1.1 Industry/Sector

Financial Sector

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Chartered accountants are in huge demand, and this has only increased in the past few years. Chartered accountants are mostly hired in the finance sector. However, there is no industry constraint in the chartered accountant career path because every industry has its own finance department. A range of sectors such as auditing firms, legal firms, stock breaking firms, finance companies, or public limited companies need chartered accountants in order to maintain a smooth flow of their day to day work.

1.2 Social Image

Highly reputed

It is one of the most revered professions. They mostly work alongside company CEOs, prime investors, bureaucrats, etc. Due to their association with aristocrats and tremendous knowledge about financial scenario, chartered accountants are held in high regard. The credential is globally recognized. Hence, one can move to abroad and start practicing in any corner of the world.

1.3 Reasons to Become a Chartered Accountant

It’s rewarding and fulfilling.

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People don’t really lie when they say that chartered accountants receive an amazing salary. The job is rewarding and fulfilling. Once you know your job and you’re committed to it, you will love your job every day. Also, it’s comparatively less expensive as a career option compared to others. The 2 D’s-dedication and diligence are your way to go!

2. What It Takes to Be a Chartered Accountant

2.1 Personality Traits Required

Patience and diligence

One has to be meticulous and good with digits to take up the chartered accountant career path! As a chartered accountant, one has to take care of the sales and look into the finance, hence being good with numbers is always a plus. Strong management and problem-solving skills, interpersonal skills are also advantageous. A person should be self-motivated and committed. Other than that, hard work and patience do the trick.

2.2 Physical Demands

No

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Chartered accountant career path does not require you to have any physical demands unlike certain other career options. You need to be active and enthusiastic to meet the clients and have good communication skills. Although, you can prepare yourself to sit for long hours.

2.3 Psychological Demands

Strong-willed nature is required.

As far as psychological demands are concerned, CA professionals have to undergo a bit of work pressure which is maximum during the peak seasons. One can face burnout if they are not mentally prepared for it. But love for your job won’t make it look like a big problem.

3. How to Build Interest in a Career in Accountancy

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3.1 Extra-Curricular Activities Recommended

Debates and quizzes

Participating in extracurricular activities is always good for your career growth. Communication skills come handy in almost every sphere of life so don’t miss out on those school debates. There’s a different body that conducts extracurricular activities for Chartered Accountant students called India Chartered Accountant Student Association (ICASA), which is further divided into four zones, north, east, west, and south.

3.2 Related Hobbies to Take Up

Chess, computer games

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There are no such games related to the profession but I personally suggest you play chess and other brain games, which will enhance your logical aptitude.

3.3 Related Movies/ TV Shows

The Shawshank Redemption, The Accountant, Inside Job

When I think about it, I would suggest ‘The Accountant’, which happens to be a story of a freelance accountant, and ‘Inside Job’, which is a documentary that concerns a financial meltdown. But I personally love the all-time cult classic, ‘The Shawshank Redemption’. Why? Because it teaches you the importance of patience and like I mentioned earlier, patience is a must-have virtue if you are a candidate for chartered accountancy.

3.4 Related Fiction to Reading/ Novels

Audit of a CA, You can be a Successful Chartered Accountant

‘You can be a Successful Chartered Accountant’ by Ajinkya Potdar comes to my mind. This book talks about the despair and gives crucial lessons to tackle it, and it can be your guiding light in times of despair. Another book that I’ve been hearing about from my colleagues is ‘Audit of a CA’ by Rucha Harish Sarda. This one discusses the intricacies of the course using metaphors. It’s exciting and comical, some people have gone to the extent of calling it the holy bible for CA aspirants.

4. Life as a Chartered Accountant

4.1 Part-Time Options

Depends on your time management skills

It gets difficult to manage part-time work if you’re already working full time in the chartered accountant career path. In case you are freelancing, then you can always find some time to pursue other hobbies such as teaching, blogging, or painting.

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4.2 Travelling Required

Not much

Travelling is not a necessity until you’ve set up your own firm at different locations. Other than that, in some cases such as auditing, one might need to visit the client and attend meetings but it’s not a compulsion. It’s more likely to be an office job.

4.3 Average Workday/ What to Expect

Five working days and 9 to 5 job

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An average workday for a chartered accountant career path depends on your type of job. In the corporate sector, typically, it’s a 9 to 5 job with five working days a week. But in some companies, you may need to work for six days depending on the type of work. It’s subjective to the company and varies according to the position or workload. Owing to the highly professional work profile, one might have to dress in formal attire and expect regular meetings.

5. Future of Your Career as a Chartered Accountant

5.1 Retirement Prospects

As per Indian government rule

If you are working in the corporate sector then retirement age is as per the government’s or the company’s rule. Pension too differs from company to company. But if you have set up your own firm and you have been practicing as a chartered accountant, then there is no such age of retirement. Knowledge knows no barriers after all!

5.2 Threats from Automation

No

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Artificial intelligence has been a threat to many job roles. At the same time, people enjoy predicting who will be the ones losing their job first. Some say, drivers, others say accountants. People share a divided opinion on this, but in my opinion chartered accountants don’t need to fear losing their jobs to artificial intelligence in the near future.

5.3 Common Reasons for People to Quit

Work pressure

Usually, practicing chartered accountants don’t quit their jobs. However, if they quit, it’s most probably in order to set up their own firm or work on their startup. Another plausible reason for quitting the chartered accountant career path can be the work pressure which is tremendous and it might take a toll on some.

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Curated & Edited by Rishika Agarwal (CareerNuts Staff)

Coming soon:

How To Become a CA: Course and Qualifications

Are you aiming to become a Chartered Accountant in the near future? Here’s all you need to know about how to become a CA. Read the article to find out the job role, qualifications, career prospects, growth opportunities and much more!

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Vicky Rohan

    September 29, 2020 at 5:08 pm

    0

    This is more helpful information than I’ve found elsewhere.

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