Want to make a flourishing career in Global finance & accounting industry and need a path to get there? Go ahead and read on.
Employers all over the world consider ACCA affiliates and members as perfect F&A professionals with the skills & ethics required to support a sustainable business. They are considered employable because of their innovative and sustainable decision-making capability backed with ethics and professionalism.
ACCA qualification embeds all the key skills (apart from the concepts of Finance & Accounting) expected by Employers from an F&A professional, such as
What is ACCA?
ACCA stands for the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, and they grant Chartered Certified Accountant degree. It is a UK based professional accountancy body. ACCA qualification is internationally recognized.
ACCA is an International Qualification
The ACCA Qualification is recognized all over the world. It is also known as “Global CA” and opens the world of unlimited opportunities in the fields of Finance & Accounting (F&A).
It has offices in more than 180 countries. ACCA has built relationships with multinational organizations, overseas accounting bodies, educational institutes, governments, and organizations such as the World Bank and the United Nations. This ensures that an ACCA member has opportunities in any part of the world.
Top 5 Career Options you can Choose after ACCA
ACCA concentrates on international accounting and auditing standards that help its members develop the knowledge and skills needed to evaluate the business and provide effective solutions to the management. Following are some of the roles an ACCA Affiliate can take up after completing the ACCA Qualification:
Financial Planner & Analyst
A financial analyst makes business recommendations for an organization based on analyses of market trends, the financial status of a company (or companies) and the predicted outcomes. They give insights to increase the profits and decrease the financial risk.
Financial Accountant & Management Accountant
A financial accountant evaluates financial information with the help of financial statements and balance sheets. Their reporting is aimed to answer questions from external stakeholders like investors, shareholders, bankers, creditors, regulators, etc.
Management accountants identify, measure, evaluate and report about the financial information of an entity. They help management make essential business decisions through critical analysis of data.
It is a popular career path for an ACCA. They oversee all of the day-to-day operations in the finance department. Their role is to manage the company’s transactions, such as accounts payable, receivable, payroll, control accounts and general operational finance, they also prepare compliance audits, assess financial data and assist in the budget-making process.
The corporate treasurer is responsible for securing the capital funds to fulfil the entity’s financial obligations. They formulate financial policies and strategies to organize funds, maintain liquidity, invest in best opportunities, and manage financial risk.
An Auditor checks and certifies the accuracy of financial and operational data and reports. Auditors ensure that the financial statements are consistent with the regulatory framework.
Tax expert advises on national and international tax law issues and implications. They ensure the entities meet their tax obligations without superseding the statutory compliances.
Salaries & Employers
ACCA-qualified students earn more than graduates by 50% to 70%. The salary ranges from INR 6 to 10 lakhs per annum after completing the ACCA qualification, depending on the profile of the job, the candidate’s experience; size, and the location of the company.
ACCA affiliates and members are hired by MNCs and Big4s like PwC, Deloitte, KPMG, EY, Grant Thornton.
ACCA Qualification Eligibility
ACCA is a student friendly body. ACCA Qualification has student entry requirements which are very flexible. It allows the students to enter the path as early as after 10+2, during and after graduation and as late as during work. The eligibility requirement –
ACCA Course – Syllabus
ACCA syllabus is spread over 13 papers across 3 ACCA levels. ACCA papers are as given below
Level 1 – Applied Knowledge
Level 2 – Applied Skills
Level 3 – Professional
(First 2 Essential & 2 Electives)
Business & Technology (BT)
Corporate & Business Law (LW)
Strategic Business Leader (SBL)
Management Accounting (MA)
Performance Management (PM)
Strategic Business Reporting (SBR)
Financial Accounting (FA)
Advanced Financial Management (AFM)
Financial Reporting (FR)
Advanced Performance Management (APM)
Audit & Assurance (AA)
Advanced Taxation (ATX)
Financial Management (FM)
Advanced Auditing & Assurance (AAA)
Detailed syllabus for each of the papers can be found here.
ACCA exams are all Computer Based Exams (CBEs), this is one of reasons why ACCA qualified are employable as they are equipped to provide solutions through technology.
The ACCA Exam structure allows a good balance between ACCA preparation and study / work. Exam pattern includes both
One can attempt 0 (skip an attempt if not up to it) to maximum 4 papers in each session. One can study on one's own or take coaching. Though ACCA recommends taking classes from learning partners as they provide continuous guidance, quality tuition and placement assistance and it is not compulsory, the choice is completely on students.
ACCA believes that a student should not be tested for any subject/topic twice if the skill and knowledge attained are the same. Thus, it permits exemptions for equivalent papers at the first two levels. Minimum 3 upto to a maximum of 9 papers can be exempt for a candidate based on the existing qualification (use the exemption calculator know your eligibility.
Knowledge level is fully exempt for B.Com undergraduates and CAs (inter and final passed).
Skill level is fully exempt for CA finalist and CMA (India) finalist with 5 years' experience, who have completed those respective papers.
This understanding of ACCA with other institutions around the world helps students get the best out of it. It saves a lot of time in obtaining a professional qualification.
ACCA makes a student equipped with Professional Skills and Job Ready
ACCA syllabus includes subjects like taxation, auditing, law, business studies, professional and ethical issues, financial management, financial reporting, and management accounting. It is based on international accounting and auditing standards. Therefore, an ACCA member is equipped with skills to work across the world.
ACCA exams involve scenario based or case study-based questions which require analytical skills. This equips its members with skills for evaluating financial requirements, formulating business solutions and proactive forward thinking, making an ACCA member a niche professional.
Partnerships with Employers
The ACCA has partnered with employers all over the world. ACCA has its own Approved Employers, who are formally recognized partners of ACCA. They provide a working environment that is designed to support ACCA members and/or trainees. There are over 8,500 approved employers approved by the ACCA that offer opportunities to the members and students. The ACCA ensures along with approved employers to give better career prospects to members.
ACCA & CA
Both CA and ACCA are highly qualified Accounting & Finance courses designed for professionals who aim for a career in Accounting, Taxation, Auditing, and Finance. CA degree in India is given by The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and ACCA certification is given by Association of Certified Chartered Accountant (ACCA).
They have similar subjects and a common syllabus to a large extent (spread across Levels I & II of ACCA but the exam patterns are completely different. CA tests mostly conceptual understanding but ACCA emphasizes analytical skills and scenario-based practical application. CA insists on articleship on before completing the final exam, but ACCA keeps exams and practical experience requirement (PER) mutually exclusive.
Compulsory ACCA Subjects for CA Finalist:
Elective ACCA Subjects for CA Finalist
Passing 4 ACCA exams - 2 compulsory subjects, and 2 from elective subjects in ACCA, CA Finalist can acquire ACCA certification from the organization.
What Next After ACCA?
Work in Industry as ACCA – Your chosen profession is in demand; you could join any industry as long as the company has a place for accounting/taxation/auditing. You can take up roles of management accountant, finance manager, treasury, auditor, CFO, etc. ACCA-qualified can work in India and outside India. Many ACCA professionals from India work in countries like the UK, Australia, Singapore, Germany, etc. There is demand for ACCAs in 180 countries where ACCA is recognized. Foreign companies with establishments in India have a huge demand for ACCA professionals. They hire professionals who are qualified for international work and know about international accounting.
Join an Accounting Firm – you can be part of the team which provides solutions for clients in all sorts of industries. This gives a broader perspective to your learnings in ACCA. They specialize in services like audit, tax, management consulting, mergers and acquisitions, forensic accounting, etc. It’s a high-growth and rewarding career.
Continue Studying – ACCA is a great foundation for many advanced specialisms within professional services like MBA, CFA, etc. Which course is better for you depends on your future goals. If you want to venture into business administration then an MBA would be good, but if you want to excel in investment management then you should pick CFA. If you want to just upskill, you can as well do ACCA Diploma in IFRS (DipIFR), which enables your proficiency in accounting.
Start your own Consultancy – Since ACCA equips you with an overall knowledge of finance and accounting, you can comfortably run your own business enterprise of consulting as freelance accountant or advisor to small and medium sized entities.
To Do or Not To Do
The ACCA Qualification is a very cost-effective way to become a finance professional. The fee payments are spread across the levels. The technical knowledge in accounting and finance and professional skills learned on the course together increases the career prospects of the members. A member is employable immediately after the completion of level 3 exams at very attractive pay. The costs can be recovered in less than 6 months.
If you want to become a professional at the youngest age possible with international job opportunities and attractive pay packages this is the course for you.