Congratulations to all those students who qualified as Chartered Accountants. Completing a rigorous training and clearing examination is indeed a commendable job.
I remember my old days, when I qualified in 2002 and the excitement on the result day was quite palpable. The immediate reaction is of wow! as the entire family and friends suddenly seem to treat you as a respectable professional of the country. And indeed it is a great feeling to be a part of the elite below 200,000 CA fraternity.
However, soon the excitement tends to subside and the next question which crops up in mind is WHAT NEXT. Notwithstanding the excitement and happiness, all of a sudden one also starts to feel nervous and think of what would happen now. With loads of opportunities staring at you, the difficulty lies in choosing the ‘Right Path’.
This series of Articles shall provide an insight into the dilemma young CAs face and the kind of opportunities available to them. It would also throw light on the challenges typically faced by students in searching the right job, getting selected and their future in such organizations. This article broadly highlights how a fresh CA should think about his future and the job opportunities available.
Sit Back, Relax and Enjoy
It is extremely important that one should sit down and think about the future opportunities. Students who are already working in good multinational firms have less difficulty in thinking about the same as they are already exposed to variety. The problem lies with students who live in Tier-II and Tier-III cities, have limited exposure in articleship and consequently, feel left alone for guidance. Generally, what has been observed is that the local friends and relatives start bombarding them with their limited exposed ideas and this pressure typically ends up in students making a wrong career choice.
Every newly qualified CA should identify his/her individual strengths and weaknesses and make a clear roadmap of where he/she sees his/her future. One should be clearly able to identify the job which would make them happy and thus, successful.
There are variety of job opportunities now-a-days available including the following:
1. Tax consulting;
2. Audit and Risk Advisory;
3. Mergers & Acquisitions;
5. Industry (which includes manufacturing and trading companies);
6. Banking & Financial services.
Each of the above industry vertical throws immense opportunities. For example, Tax consulting will have direct tax, indirect tax, transfer pricing and expat taxation. M&A vertical will have opportunities in due diligence, valuation, M&A tax advisory. Similarly, banking and financial services industry hires CAs for variety of functions including credit and mortgage risk, internal audit, forex etc.
In addition, it has been observed that there is a big confusion amongst fresh CAs that KPOs are call centers and thus, it is not advisable to join them. This conception is grossly inaccurate since KPOs are typically knowledge based units (generally captive) where huge accounting, finance and taxation processes are carried out. This industry has infact, created loads of job opportunities for Chartered Accountants on the basis that Indian accountants are smart, hard-working and intelligent. Consequently, majority of such global processes have landed in Indian KPOs. One therefore, needs to know how such companies function and what kind of work profile do such companies offer.
For example, Genpact alone has a strength of more than 1500 Chartered Accountants on their role and its increasing. Similarly, companies like HSBC, Deloitte, E&Y, KPMG, J P Morgan, Goldman Sachhs etc have huge captive units which take care of accounting, finance and tax processes for their global entities. These industries therefore, provide immense opportunities to newly qualified and experienced CAs.
The right approach is therefore, identify the companies which offer jobs relevant to your skill-sets, target them through right channels and finally go for it. ICAI Campus provides an opportunity to get a job and thus, one should make the most of it. In addition, there are some boutique private companies working on improving the employability quotient of CAs where they impart specialized technical and soft skills trainings and other value added services, such as CV preparation and tips on cracking the GDs and interviews They also conduct their private campuses which allows students to get jobs.
One can therefore, sit back, relax and enjoy the future provided right guidance is seeked and thus, a right career path is treaded.
Nimish is a Chartered Accountant and a Company Secretary and has more than 10 years of experience. He has worked with E&Y and KPMG in Europe and with Pwc, Mumbai. Nimish now runs Promaynov Executive Trainers LLP, a boutique training and recruitment firm for fresh/newly qualified CAs which provides technical and soft skills training to new CAs and also helps them with jobs through their private campus. He can be contacted at email@example.com