Steps to become a chartered accountant are challenging, but it is the right decision to get a rewarding career. The designation of a Chartered Accountant demonstrates that the holder has a mastery of accountancy. Being a chartered accountant holder offers an opportunity for job prospects on a global scale with desirable starting salaries and job flexibility. A chartered accountant can work in various fields and industries like financial sectors, private sectors, and public service. It requires one to acquire educational and professional training before becoming a chartered accountant and passing a qualifying CA examination.

A Path to become a CA

Before you become a CA, there are paths to choose from under the Chartered Accountancy heading like chartered accountant audit option, chartered certified accountant option, chartered management accountant, and CPFA (Chartered Public and Finance Accountant). These paths vary according to the training emphasis you took and the size of the organizations you are looking forward to working for. Before choosing a career path in chartered accountancy, you must ask yourself whether you are going into private practice or looking forward to working in an NGO or profit doing business. As you climb the training ladder in your career and gain more experience in the field, you can answer some of these questions.

Undergraduate degree

You are better placed as a CA when you have attained a 4-year program from a recognized institution. You can either pursue a degree in accountancy, economics, or commerce. And you already attained an undergraduate degree from other disciplines; you will have to take extra numeracy classes to hone your skills for accounting related subjects. Alternatively, you can be admitted for CA qualifications if you got good grades in mathematics and business-related classes. And some organizations might accept you if you have a 2-year associate degree as a foundation to pursue CA.

Accounting subjects

Suppose you already have an undergraduate degree from other disciplines and wish to pursue chartered accountancy. In that case, it is empirical to enroll in business courses at the college level, like accounting, economics, and finance. Other courses available that you might pursue at a local college include; taxation, statistics, and auditing. Alternatively, you can enroll in chartered accountant prep programs that will prepare you to train in chartered accountancy. These prep programs offer the professionals to build their numeracy and accounting skills before enrolling in the CA program.

Enroll for a CA training program

Enrolling for a CA program allows the professionals to develop competencies in areas of specialization like finance, taxation, audit, and finance law. One can either take these courses online or in person. Some programs may prepare you to sit for examinations while others have strict course durations and credit hours that you must complete before sitting for CA examinations. Some programs are designed for working professionals with rich experience in the financial sector.

Get professional experience

After successfully passing the Chartered Accountancy examinations, one must hone their skills in the real workplace. The best option one can acquire experience is by placement in a reputable company like Accounting by You must gain three years of experience to be a chartered accountant approved professional. After three years of professional placement, one must submit a professional competencies report to the relevant bodies before they are admitted as CA professionals.