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CA vs acca - know the difference, choose the right career path.

Thinking ACCA vs CA

Greetings to my great bookworms! While you read this write-up, you are likely to be in your comfort space. Did I choose the best?? I most clearly did. The instances are flying, separately you’re getting extra questions. You, my reader, are in the middle of an international disaster and this could be your new way of life. And hope you all are safe and sound like I guessed you are, you have got masses to cheer approximately and be grateful for. You are already doing beautifully exquisite things. Assure you’ll get greater clarity via going through this

Which one is better - CA or ACCA?

Both CA (Chartered Accountancy) and ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) are the most prestigious and honored qualifications and have equivalent values in India. These professional qualification courses will very well fetch you a rewarding career in the field of Finance & Accountancy.
In India, CA is the most desired qualification for aspiring accountants and auditors. But many aspirants seem discouraged by the low passing rates and limited recognition globally. So, when it comes to global recognition and worldwide career opportunities, ACCA can be more advantageous as compared to CA.
So, let me help you clear your confusion between CA and ACCA.

What is ACCA?

ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is a leading and global professional accounting body offering a qualification of Chartered certified Accountant. ACCA institute with its headquarters in London, United Kingdom was founded in 1904 is one of the fastest-growing accounting qualifications. The qualification is acknowledged in almost all countries and in fact, many countries have considered it as their local qualification. 

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So here are a few fundamental differences between ACCA & CA:
A) Course structure:

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B) Some unique features of ACCA (not offered into CA):
ACCA Qualification allows a candidate to pursue specializations in the Final Level i.e. Professional level. A candidate needs to appear for two essential papers and two optional papers. These optional exams offer a unique opportunity for a candidate to specialize in areas of greatest relevance to the chosen career path.
So for example, if you are someone who is not fond of Performance Management as a subject and find it quite difficult, just do not appear for the same and choose the subjects which you are really fond of.

The Ethics & Professional Skill Module, a module designed in order to develop a spectrum of advanced ethical & professional skills, exposing them to realistic business situations.
Global recognition of the ACCA qualification enables you to work with Multinational Companies, Big 4s, Grant Thornton, American Express, Citibank, Accenture, HSBC, and other corporate organizations around 181 countries. As compared to CA qualification, ACCA shall broaden up your career options significantly.
ACCA syllabus covers International Law & International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). And since most of the firms and organizations nowadays are seeking professionals who are aware of the international Law & standards, qualifying ACCA can open global career doors for you.
You can additionally gain an international degree in Accountancy on your way to ACCA membership from Oxford Brookes University & University of London.

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So, to summarize, ACCA qualification takes your career in a direction wherein you have some best and interesting roles to pursue in the field of Finance & Accountancy worldwide. Employers across the globe trust ACCA qualification. On qualifying ACCA you can work in every aspect of business, finance & management. ACCA salary in India is equivalent to that of CA qualified professionals i.e. up to INR 8 lakhs p.a. depending upon the candidate’s skills & knowledge, job profile, company, and competition.

Since, now you know the features of both the qualifications and its career prospects in India as well as abroad, depending on your preferences you can make your decision. Both the qualifications are highly rewarded and respected in the Industry. So, if you are looking for a global career and willing to work with corporate organizations all around the globe, ACCA shall be the best option to choose from. But if you want to work with domestic & public sector companies, in the taxation and PSUs Auditing CA shall be a more suitable option.

(Note that ACCA members do not have signatory rights in India i.e. they do not have any authority to sign the books of accounts as ICAI reserves that authority for their members, but yes you can very well work in Audit teams.)

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  • ACCA is Globally Recognized in over 78 markets & has 80+ accountancy body partnerships all over the world.
  • ACCA communicates credibility as your knowledge is examined over 14 thorough exams. It is an excellent way to give your resume an edge.
  • Well Planned Curriculum for ACCA is continuously renewed to produce industry-relevant knowledge, skills & professional advantages.
  • Long Term Career as an ACCA. In ACCA, they train you to perform strategic roles at senior management levels.
  • The cumulative expense of ACCA is 2 to 3 Lacs, which works out cheaper than available options.

Who should pursue ACCA program?

HSC interested in Accounting Career

With its flexible learning and student friendly examination systems, it gets you off the blocks. It also equips you for roles beyond accounting to build a long term career.

Accounting / M.Com / CA background

Since you get several exemptions, ACCA program is faster and cheaper way for you to prepare for multiple roles and to open doors of multinational organizations

Experienced Professional

ACCA will refresh the concepts and prepare you for strategic roles increasing your career enhancement prospects for you

What are the various career option in ACCA?

ACCA Qualifications present various opportunities at a broad scope of organizations because:

  • A holistic approach in the curriculum of ACCA trains you for various roles; you can go on to per strategic tasks
  • Multinational organizations, numerous captives/KPOs, are aware of the ACCA qualification since its members/students are spread over 181 countries.
  • Accountant
  • Internal auditor
  • Forensic accountant
  • Group accountant
  • Risk manager
  • Compliance/ Governance officer
  • Business analyst
  • Treasurer
  • Management accountant
  • Business adviser
  • Credit control manager
  • Chief financial officer
  • Tax accountant
  • Insolvency practitioner
  • Funds manager
  • Financial analyst

Scope of ACCA in India

A lot of the ACCA qualified professionals in India are employed with the Big 4s or MNCs. Youth in India have now become knowledgeable of ACCA qualification and are hiring them eagerly. Leading employers in India for ACCA are Deloitte, TATA Communications, Embassy Group, etc. CA and ACCA members are frequently being offered similar job profiles, designation, and salary packages.
India is taking another step closer towards globalization by preceding Ind-AS drafted on principles similar to IFRS. ACCA covers IFRS broadly in its syllabus, which would give an edge to ACCA members in India.
With many financial KPOs in India, India has become a central outsourcing hub for accounting. Employers prefer financial functions and ACCA qualified professionals for handling these functions.
In India, the average salary offered to ACCA fresher is between INR3,50,000 to INR 4,00,000.


Shruti Thakkar is the Head of Department (HOD) & also a Domain Head for Finance & Accounts Domain here at Times & Trends Academy, Koregaon Park. She holds a Degree in Commerce from Birla College of Arts, Science & Commerce, Mumbai University. She is also pursuing her CFA professional course and has already cleared CFA Level 1 exams. Having a deep interest in Research, she has completed her certification course from National Institute of Securities Market (NISM), Mumbai in Research Analyst and Mutual Funds 5A module. She comes with a rich experience of 6+ years into Audit & Finance sector. She has an effective management style, superior communication & inter-personal skills and good with strategic academic planning.



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