CA Smaller is the word, bigger is its meaning. Chartered word has been taken from the word “charter” which means “a sea” and in case of CA it’s a never ending. Boundless sea of knowledge, power, education, excellence and many more which cant be defined through alphabets.CA whose known to be a god of fairness and truthfulness, his 4 inches of signature and 7 inches of stamp let a company to build its enormous goodwill in the market, NO CA is personally known to anyone but it’s the faith of the people in this profession which makes it so worth full, it’s the faith which actually speaks.
Thousands of guidance notes, Journals ,Articles ,accounting standards, standards of auditing, and ICAI modules are there which are only meant to show a light beam to a person giving CPT exam till he appeared for his CA final just to make him worthy, so that he can stand in front anyone and can say that “yes” I am a CA .These are the reasons which not only bring challenges to a CA but also build a huge mountain of responsibility which makes it necessary for him to be a master of his field , to grab knowledge from wherever he can ,move faster than a time, be better than what he was yesterday , more updated than any newspaper in the world and be a multi talented person playing several roles in the journey of his profession.
Rise of CA as IT manager
The Atomic bomb of technology has been exploded and the whole world is revolutionarised into a robotic era. where each and every sector and field had a makeover with IT kit a CA in order to add color to his knowledge sea and to simplify the complicacies born with the present decade ,had to enter the world of “0 s” and “1 s” .information technology has now become a fuel to the world’s commercial engine and CA being the driver of this engine has to play a role if an “IT manager” .The typical CA office with heaves of paper ,lots of ink pots, bundles of files and a rack bustling with ledgers, journals, and balance sheets of clients ,all of them are now concised into “14 inches” PC or laptop to support all of his paper work .IT has given wings to a CA to break his shell of Dr and Cr and rule the world .The importance of IT is self explanatory. As a CA provides services of sometime a tax consultant, sometime a financial analyst, cost manager, sometime an auditor and for now an IT manager
Firstly I want to bring the job of an IT manager in to the spotlight .more or less his work consists of fights with 0 s and 1 s of the computer information system, mind teasing with organizations IT strategies ,proper and timely updations of his IT fundas ,ensuring adequate IT investment by the organizations , management of IT staff etc. All of the above said points includes playing with the available information and using it for providing the best possible services to his clients applying all of his (IT manger) available skills and expertise of the CA also which performs number grunching in accounting, mind teasing in taxation and others consultancy services and needs obviously a continuous updations plus the prepackaged software has made the world of CA much more easier then ever it was and playing the role of IT manager side by side of his chartered accountancy loop.
Following are the phases when a CA contributes maximum as an IT manager.
PHASE 1: HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT PHASE
1 ANALYSES OF THE CURRENT PROBLEM
He makes the analyses of the current problem, gathers the data, prepares a proper algorithms and flowcharts to solve the problem thus assisting the programmers .Hence he act as a bridge between the staff and problem solvers(programmers).
2 MEASUREMENT OF PERFORMANCE
The performance of the articled assistance is measured nowadays through the software in which automated standard reports are generated with which the work of the articles is measured and extent of deviation in their work is analyzed and also providing solutions for removing them
3. ELECTRONIC WORK DIARY
As a principal a CA provide assistance to its article in preparation of there work diary in an electronic form using system software where the work done by the articles is fed and then reports are generated on their experience it also provide advisory service regarding how much more experience is needed & in which field .
4. DEVELOPMENTS OF THE REQUIRED SKILLS AND KNOWLEDGE
He helps in the development of skills among articles by conducting various technical’s sessions regarding the use of available commercial software’s such as tally etc and also making them aware regarding updations .E.g. a common updations which a principal is providing to its articled assistance is ad vancement in tally to tally ERP.
5. COORDINATION OF ACTIVITIES
Coordination is done by scheduling work assignment setting priorities and directing the work of subordinates
LIKE THIS A CA PLAYS THE ROLE OF A PRINCIPAL AS WELL AS IN IT MANAGER IN DEVELOPMENT OF HIS ARTICLES
PHASE 2: TAX CONSULTANCY USING IT SKILLS
As CA is also now an IT manager it’s his responsibility to be updated with latest software and automation systems. Various tax software’s such as “saral tax office “ are now available to provide him assistance in maintaining the tax structure of the organization and providing various tax consultancies .These software covers the Income Tax, ITR Forms, Wealth tax, Balance Sheet, Audit Reports, eTDS, TCS, Service Tax, Fringe Benefit Tax, Registrar of Companies and Project Reports. All these statutory concepts have now become automated either by the way of automatic calculations or in report/return preparation
No longer we have to manually analyze the tax planning. He can speed up the process of tax planning and make it more effective and advanced by using technologies that take into consideration various factors and plan the best possible tax processes. It helps the organization in optimizing its tax position as well as identifying and mitigating various risk areas. For e.g. Transfer Pricing Architect ® (TPA) is comprehensive transfer pricing software for documentation, analysis and international tax planning. TPA helps multinational corporations assess and manage transfer pricing risk and comply with global transfer pricing regulations, while avoiding costly penalties. Comprehensive transfer pricing software helps global organizations produce an in-depth transfer pricing study and prepare country-specific transfer pricing documentation with ease.
PHASE 3: An IT-FINANCIAL MANAGER
Another area where ca provides his services is of finance. In which he decides about the procurement of finance and then its best possible use giving maximum earning .Being an IT manager this task is more simplified and performed with greater accuracy. Regulation of finance and its management can be done by using software’s which
· Removes the headache of maintaining and keeping eye on the bank accounts, statements as it automatically downloads them. It organizes all of finances l in one place, to avoid problem of roaming over various sites
· It automatically categorizes the expenses, so we don’t have to perform it manually. We can know exactly where our money has come where it is going and what is the endproduct
Making it easier to meet the obligations, avoid late fees on bills, pay off debt, and save more money.
In today’s pace that business environment evolves, it is more than obvious that a CA need to perform the financial feasibility studies in the most reliable and quickest way. Otherwise decisions could be wrongly taken based on wrong assumptions .financial planning using these types of software are of great help E.g. Quicken Software
One of the important tasks performed by CA is capital budgeting. Gone are the times when one as to manually write figures on the papers and calculate budgets. Also updation in the data is difficult. Moreover, we cannot get warning even if one invests in something that makes the organizations budget unstable. Hence as an IT manager, CA can introduce budgeting software with the help of which he can get the facility to independently keep track of your debts, savings, incomes, and various other monetary matters. The only thing you need to do is input the data of your finances. It provides accuracy, and keeps reminding at each time the possibility of a loss when an expense is made.
For e.g. InnoSlice, Inzolo, MoneyWell, Mvelopes etc.
PHASE 4: COMPUTERISED ACCOUNTANTANCY
Past 10 years of this decade were full of advancements and surprises for the accounting field i.e Introduction of accounting information system, tally to tally ERP and many more have converted a CA from a typical “MUNSHI JI” to a highly advanced, technical and gageted and computerized CA thus playing a role of an IT manager as well. These systems have converted our day book, ledgers and balance sheets from typical thick green colored “granth” to an electrical format on the small computer chip providing us:
Ø Consistency of performance
Ø Programmed control procedures
Ø Single transactions update of multiple files
Ø System generated transactions
The list of advantages which these packages are giving to us is never ending
PHASE 5 STRATEGY FORMULATIONS
The advancement and a drastic change in the accounting sector plus the easy availability of information has opened the windows of management and non financial areas for a CA
Ø Although a CA had always been an in evitable part of the strategic development of an organization and now because of IT explosion both CA and IT are fused together to give an organization a best strategy.
As CA has to advice upon each and every step of strategic development, this task has now become easy for him with a” ROUND TABLE” STRATEGIC PLANNING software which guides him not only on financial but non financial sectors crucial for strategic planning.
Ø One more marvelous invention of IT contributed to our commercial gadget kit is “EXPERT SYSTEM” (KNOWLEDGE BASE) used by many CA and strategic managers consultants to get assistance to untie the complicacies of external environment. They also provide advice and opinions in case of dilemma and are used for identifying and mitigating various risk areas.
PHASE 6: CIS AUDITOR
AUDITING: The area which is a trademark of a CA, although it does not form a higher part of a general CA income but it is a service which cant be provided by anyone else but a CA
Ø As the whole business environment and all of its aspects are adjoining with “e” such as “e-commerce” “e-business” etc.therefore in order to give an opinion on this “e” our accounting world has also introduced an “e” i.e. CAAT( COMPUTER ASSISTED AUDIT TECHNIQUES) and ASSET BARC AUDITING SOFTWARES in order to handle’ e-frauds’ and ‘e –errors’ so that he can give an ‘e-opinion’
Ø Auditing around the computer and auditing through the computer has now become general for each and every auditor
Ø Audit plans and procedures have now become easy to develop using CAAT tools
Ø These systems such as ERP ensures that the internal controls and checks are consistently followed
Ø Income tax laws are followed properly
Ø Accounting standards are followed
Thus improving the quality of reporting
PHASE 7: SYSTEM MAINTENANCE
It is the area where A CA actually become like an IT manager
CA as an IT manager performs the following work:
1 He is invovled in decision making regarding the selection of various accounting ,taxation software to be used in the organization sufficient to fulfill his purpose, but comes in the budgets(e.g. whether he needed tally or other accounting software)
2 He has become responsible for deciding the user interfaces e.g. which operating system has to be used so that articles can work with ease
4 He also provides the software systems documentations of the software that he suggests or that is currently used in the organization. Documentation helps to explain the fresher/layman how to operate the system.
5.He also ensures that the information that is being processed in the organisation, in the form of employees or client data, may be audit reports , tax structures, etc should be securely stored in permanent location and there should be proper communication( between companies).
6. Taking security measures by shuffling of job duties and maintaining authorization and authentication
7 He has become responsible for checking and validation of various software’s that is currently being installed in the organisation and co relates the performances of older and newer systems and generates result accordingly that whether the new system(PC or any data processing machine or any software) is beneficial or not.
8. He has also become responsible for securing the company's secret information from online frauds and viruses by installing appropriate firewalls (through passwords, biometric systems etc) so that no intruder can have access to company's personalized data.
At the end I want to conclude that software’s may come and go but none of them can replace a chartered accountant who being a single person itself is a knowledge base and his mind a microprocessor playing on various roles as the one defined by me in the presentation