When you will read title of this article it seems like you are  asking a kid of 6 months: TELL me when you will WALK? (when he is unable to TALK)! And we enjoy talking with them! Isn’t it?

The question is not of how he will RUN. Once he takes a correct step after falling so many times; it is sure he will walk.

Similar is the case with a newly qualified person. Often after the CA Final results are announced, a crucial decision that troubles most Chartered Accountants is to choose a career option that will best meet their interests and abilities. But here so many alternatives are available to him to start with. Fortunately there are more than 100 careers for a commerce student. The big issue before him after qualifying is: In which field to enter and how to start in that field. Passing the CA Final exams is only the first hurdle, and a relatively small one, that you will cross while you set sail for the professional journey of your life. I say this because your performance in academics solely depends on your hard work and talent. Till a student does not pass professional exams; his main aim is to pass it anyhow. The moment he passes; again he gets confused what to do now. Even a rank holder doesn’t find immediate solution to this problem. I have seen many times that such students remain at home for approximately 6 months! (I am also not an exception to this..!!) After clearing the CA exams and articleship, we are often shrouded by confusion. What should I do now? What profile should I pick? Which sector will give me the best job satisfaction and professional growth? Whether and where to relocate? It’s hard to believe, but this confusion is actually a good thing. Confusion is created by the limitless choices and options you have.

Immediately after passing; qualified CAs should regularly refer newspapers, Institute’s journal and financial magazines like Money, Business World, Business Today etc. Read these magazines with your “analytical power.” These will update you within a short span of time about the prevalent economic conditions of the world and performance of home companies. This is very important to develop insight about the profession. Now-a-days; new avenues of business are regularly opened. Whatever you have read before 2-3 years; may be of outdated version. You should refer your text books again with an altogether different angle. Thank God that now there is no stress of passing! But looking to your career it is a must so that you can really decide which subjects you like the most. After deciding that; start your practice in that area. Never find an entry in a field which you dislike but people say it is rewarding. Once the career goes to wrong direction to your strength; lifelong penalty is required to be paid. And that penalty would be gradually increased YOY. Before deciding to start your own practice: Look around the whole profession. Find out: Who are the peers in the profession and to whom you like. Try to meet such professionals in a group of 3-4 persons. Believe me they would be happy to note the entry of young professionals in the field. In profession like CA there is no tough competition for competent persons (Believe me)! It is also be possible that they themselves will offer some of their work either on spot or after sometime when they feel shortage of good staff (which happens with all the firms most of the time).

To start with If you “love” Direct or Indirect Taxation; then know methodology of big chartered accountancy firm in that field. Right now so many new qualified persons are in search of good opportunities. But don’t forget to update your knowledge about latest amendments, Notifications, Circulars etc. One of the easiest routes for new professionals to “beat” senior persons (my apology) by forming a big professional firm by entering into a partnership firm of 4 to 6 persons. Within 2-3 years; you will get good professional work from Banks when you apply for empanelment! When you get some certification courses relevant to your professional field; it will add your competence and you would be preferred especially with government agencies. Luck, market conditions, opportunities, contacts, location, field of interest and ‘being at the right place at the right time’ will play a very insignificant role. All these factors will have a major say in determining the direction and growth of your career. Regularly see your institute’s website to know about latest developments and also participate in upcoming programs likely to be held in and around your city to make familiar with yourself who are the best in the profession in your area. Try to find out the strengths of such professional (including their weaknesses) since initially nobody would be expert in any of the field; hence better take some assignments of big professional firms. That may not be good in terms of financial rewards. At these moments remember your “quantity” of stipend you received just one year back and be happy what you receive now.

Now CA profession has crossed its conventional boundary of Taxation and Auditing, while audit and taxation are fields commonly associated with Chartered Accountants, the advent of globalization has opened new horizons for them. There are many non conventional areas where CAs can have brighter opportunity. If you choose a Non conventional area of practice/services; training and experience gained during study and articleship period will be of much relevance. Some of the non conventional area where one can build a bright career includes due diligence, Government Contracts and Tenders, Intellectual Property Rights, Corporate Social Responsibility, SEZ Expert, Merger & Acquisitions. Fintech Laws, FEMA, Import & Export Laws, Foreign contribution Regulation Act, Startups, Insolvency Professional, RERA advisor, Blockchain Technology and artificial intelligence. Now a day’s Chartered Accountats are everywhere including Print & Electronic Media, Mutual Fund Houses NBFCs, Investment Banking, Real estate Management and Content Management. This is much better than before (future is bright – hence proved).Also keep into your mind that you are in a much better position than other stream where no professional career is available till the age 21 or 22. This way your satisfaction would be doubled. Now in this new era of paradigm shift where every new day you will find an opportunity waiting for you like Demonetization, GST, RERA, Insolvency & Bankruptcy Law, Blockchain Technology, Artificial Intelligence, CFO service , Business Management Consultant, Forensic Accounting & Fraud Detection and Enterpirse Risk Management. You can imagine yourself as a master of any one or more. It is only a matter of time. (Not at all the timeJ).

Arguably, no other profession gives such versatility to you career. Each subject in your CA Final exam can be a career choice in itself.  Even some professional friends are practicing only one or two Sections of Direct/Indirect Tax Laws. The possibilities are endless. Take 3 years “practical training” in the “field” for self. When you can work for “others” during your articleship period; then I think definitely you would be happy to do this training for your own as a BOSS.

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October 2020