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The Need for Multiple Specializations and Certifications for Accountants

In the hotly competitive job market of today when accounting is automating fast and financial accounting is increasingly software driven, if you have to stand out, you have to demonstrate your expertise in newer, more advanced and specialized accounting domains that address the core business strategy and capabilities of organizations. Tax and compliance are no longer the chief worry areas for most large organizations. That's exactly why the most successful accounting professionals around the world carry multiple certifications that demonstrate their diverse professional expertise.

In fact, many accounting certification programs including Chartered Accountancy overlap a little in syllabus, knowledge areas and experience requirements, and synergize very well. So as a qualified CA, if you plan carefully, with little extra work and study, you can leverage your current knowledge to complete the other global certifications and qualifications like CIMA® without breaking much sweat.

Globally, there is an unmistakable trend among accounting professionals to increasingly acquire multiple qualifications that diversify their career options. Accounting professionals carrying qualifications from their national accounting associations realize the limitations of expertise in local accounting standards and are looking at global qualifications, reducing their dependence on financial and disclosure accounting.

The happy fact is that no matter what additional certifications you choose to obtain over and above your current qualification like CA, some of the benefits are universal:

Expanded Career Opportunities
Your expertise in multiple areas and domains of accounting positions makes you rightly for a wider variety of jobs and roles across more diverse industries and sectors, and also enrich your advisory and consulting capabilities significantly, besides yanking open global opportunities.

An Impressive Resume & Profile
Multiple certifications enrich your profile by demonstrating your passion for continuous learning, determination, width of professional expertise and readiness to work anywhere in the world cutting across accounting and tax regimes. While such resumes are considered extremely favorably by the employers; for entrepreneur accounting professionals, multiple certifications very obviously have a multiplier effect on their scope of business, service portfolio and client confidence and trust. Indeed, multi-certified professionals at once stand themselves out in a crowd of professionals that have just one or no globally recognized certification.

Increased Compensation & Earnings
While the quantum of rise in salary and earnings may vary across certifications, experience profile, current position and organizational fit, salary reports around the world consistently show that on an average multi-certified accounting professionals earn more than their less qualified peers in general. For example, having both CIMA and CA can boost your salary anywhere between 15 to 20%. Also the opportunity for promotions and growth will add more on the salary increment. Needless to say, entrepreneur CAs and CPAs with qualifications in multiple accounting domains stand to multiply the earnings from their accounting and consulting practice, as they have more diverse and globally relevant service offerings.

As a Chartered Accountant you demonstrate your expertise in accounting, auditing and taxation. Chartered Accountants are the best qualified accounting professionals in India, but their expertise limits them for only organizations and services connected to Indian accounting, audit and tax regimes and standards. However, this qualification has become is so broad and generic today, that growing ones accounting career does demand expanding knowledge and expertise beyond disclosure and statutory accounting. That's where a specialized global qualification like CIMA® becomes relevant, as it opens up global opportunities, while leveraging at the same time, a CA's existing expertise in accounting, auditing and taxation.

Though the Chartered Investment & Management Accounting (CIMA®) certification shares a small part of its core accounting curriculum with that of the CA of ICAI, CIMA is looks away from financial and disclosure accounting and is tilted more toward accounting that directly impacts competitiveness, profitability, growth and sustainability of organizations.

For professionals who have qualified CA or are on their way:

• The CIMA qualified professionals are highly attractive resources for not just Fortune firms and large local and foreign multinationals, but also for high-brow employers like investment banks, brokerage firms, mutual funds, hedge funds, consulting firms and accounting and finance KPOs.
• The CIMA USA certification journey adds high-value knowledge and skills in critical areas like business strategy, global finance, global taxation, transfer pricing, investment analysis, forex risk management and international financial reporting. This knowledge set prepares qualified and aspiring Chartered Accountants for even better job profiles
• Acquiring the CIMA qualification means demonstrating globally respected specialization in management accounting and investment accounting. This double-specialization opens up options for qualified and aspiring Chartered Accountants of careers in Investment Accounting and Management Accounting, in addition to Financial Accounting
• The CIMA qualification prepares Chartered Accountants for roles that demand knowledge of international tax and accounting regimes
• The CIMA® certification is globally recognized, equipping you for work and life anywhere around the world.

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