Chartered accountants are responsible for preparing or reporting on financial statements for presentation to the public. Chartered accountants act as consultants on financial matters, taxation, accounting and computer systems, estate planning and management reporting and procedures. They accept appointments such as executors, liquidators, trustees or curators. What am I going to do in this occupation?
The primary responsibility of chartered accountants in practice, is to report on the financial statements of clients, to the clients’ shareholders as required by its constitution or through legislation. In order to compile reports, chartered accountants examine the books and records of the client, considering the adequacy of the controls over the safe-keeping of the client's assets, as well as the fairness of the financial statements prepared by the client for presentation to its shareholders or the public. Planning and management
Chartered accountants compile reports on aspects of management, for use by the client in improving the management of the company. They investigate the accounting methods adopted by clients and make recommendations for the improvement thereof. Auditing
Chartered accountants investigate the financial reports of the company and then report on it. Computerisation
They also assist in the installation of computerised systems and the development of programmes, the planning of financial models and the giving of advice regarding hard-and software purchases. Taxation
Chartered accountants are tax specialists and they give advice on determining of and the legal manner of saving tax. Legal matters
It is important that chartered accountants are well versed in mercantile and company law and are therefore able to handle the legal aspects of contracts, estate planning, and are able to accept appointments such as trustees in insolvent estates, liquidators of insolvent companies or curators where people are unable to administer their own affairs. Financial management
Chartered accountants who choose to specialise in a career in commerce and industry normally advance to positions in top management, such as financial directors. In this position accountants are responsible for control over the funds and assets of the company or institution, the preparation of financial or management reports to top management and the interpretation thereof in order to increase efficiency and profitability.
What kind of personality do I need?
To be successful, qualities such as integrity, intelligence, good judgement, a strong analytical predisposition and determination are needed. It is also necessary to be able to work and convey recommendations both clearly and accurately.
What kind of school training do I need?
A Senior Certificate (matric exemption) with Mathematics as a major subject is essential in order to study further in this field. Compulsory school subjects: Mathematics.
Recommended school subjects: Accounting, Economics, Business Economics.
What further training do I need?
Until recently persons wishing to qualify as chartered accountants could only obtain their practical/business training with a firm of approved registered accountants and auditors in public practice (TIPP). This training is now, however, also available in approved training organisations outside of public practice (TOPP). The training outside of public practice will be of the same standard as that offered by a practising firm. The working environment and the practical experience, will however, be different. The following routes are available in training as a chartered accountant: • Enrol for a three-year B.Com. (Acc.) degree or equivalent at an approved tertiary institution, then, register for a one-year CTA (Certificate of Theory and Accountancy) or equivalent at an approved tertiary institution, then, enter into a three-year training contract either with an auditing firm or an approved...
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