Chartered accountants are professionals with a wide range of skills. They work in a variety of public, private, and nonprofit sectors across the world. Whether you want to be an auditing specialist or a tax professional, a career as a chartered accountant can be rewarding and challenging.
Getting a job as a chartered accountant requires extensive training and experience, along with the right qualifications and certifications. However, with recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicting that accountant jobs will grow by 7% over the next decade, this is a promising field for those who are interested in a stable and high-paying career.
To become a CA, you must pass a series of exams that will qualify you for the profession. You must also secure a training contract with an employer approved by one of the three institutes (ICAEW, ICAS and Chartered Accountants Ireland).
The process is lengthy, taking at least three years to complete. During this time, you will train in public practice, where you will work on client accounts and develop your professional skills and abilities. You may also be asked to take on a secondment, where you’ll work at another part of the firm to build on your current experience or go overseas for an extended period of time.
You must have at least a Bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance or a related field to become a CA. You must also be able to demonstrate good mathematical knowledge and ability.
Most employers will expect you to have completed the Chartered Accountant examinations before they consider you for employment. You can begin your training as a trainee with Quest Accountants Birmingham UK an approved firm, or you can apply directly to the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales or Chartered Accountants Ireland.
Once you’ve obtained your qualification, you’ll need to continue to build your skills and expertise through Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses. Every three years, you’ll need to complete at least 90 CPD hours. These can include attending seminars, workshops or conferences. You can also gain CPD credits from reading books, journals or other online resources.
It is important to keep your knowledge fresh, which can be done through regular reading and study. You can learn about new industry trends and how to apply them to your job.
When working with clients, it is important to provide them with accurate and timely financial information. Providing this information will allow them to make sound decisions and avoid financial mistakes.
Chartered accountants are often called upon as expert witnesses in legal proceedings, where they can testify about their knowledge of the financial records of the company. They also work in the corporate finance subsector, assisting companies with mergers, acquisitions, management buy-ins and capital reconstructions.
Chartered accountants are highly skilled professionals who use a broad spectrum of accounting and business expertise to help their clients achieve success. They are well respected and highly valued around the globe. They are regulated by the ICA and subject to a code of ethics, which means that they are expected to be professional, ethical and accountable. They must uphold a strict code of practice and are required to maintain their membership to ensure that they remain fit for public practice.