In this post, you will understand – How to become a Chartered Accountant in Australia and Zealand.
Ketan is a provisional Chartered Accountant from Chartered Accountants of Australia and New Zealand. He is currently enrolled in the taxation module.
He has worked at the Australian Taxation Office as a Tax Help Volunteer and at the University of South Australia as a Project Officer and an Accounting intern.
And today Ketan shares with us about the various Accounting bodies in Australia and why he chose CA ANZ over all of them!
My CA Journey in Australia
I have recently enrolled in the Taxation module (my 1st module) and was tested for it on the 15th of Dec’18.
I had some friends who were are also preparing for the same. So, we all used to study together.
Studying in a group will help you clear all your concepts within a shorter timeframe.
CA ANZ also provides a platform where you can meet and study with different people.
In case you have any technical doubts, there’s an online platform provided by CA ANZ and monitored by experts.
Past exam papers are also provided as part of your study process.
As this is my 1st module, I have planned to make notes which will help me revise the syllabus during the exam time.
Regarding Mock Tests, you will get exam paper for practice at the end i.e. after 12 weeks of online coaching.
The best part of giving an exam here is that you write only that information which is relevant to the question. No need to fill in the pages to get the marks.
Exam dates and months can be found on the website.
You can read my entire journey here – My Journey Studying Abroad (Australia) And Pursuing CA ANZ
- Which CPA is better – CPA US, CPA Australia or CPA Canada?
- A journey of a Chartered Accountant from India to Canada?
- Why I Quit Indian CA to Pursue CPA US and I have NO REGRETS?
- Why I Did CPA US After Qualifying as a Chartered Accountant from India?
- How To Become A Forensic Accountant Without a CA / CPA Degree?
- How To Find A Job In Australia When I Moved From South Africa?
- Why I Quit My Job and Moved to Melbourne
- 30+ Forensic Accounting Firms in Australia To Find A Job Opportunity
- How to Pursue CPA Australia?
- My Journey Studying Abroad (Australia) And Pursuing CA ANZ
AUSTRALIA AND ITS ACCOUNTING INSTITUTES
Australian Accounting Institutes:
- CA ANZ – Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand
- CPA Australia – Certified Public Accountant
- IPA- Institute of Public Accountants
CA ANZ – CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND
How to become a Provisional member of CA ANZ:
- Complete an accredited Bachelors’ or Masters’ degree from an Australian university.
- You can find out if the degree is accredited or not by visiting the university’s website and searching on the front page of the degree’s information page.
- Generally, both bachelors’ and masters’ degree in accounting is accredited by CA ANZ and CPA Australia. But, it’s better to confirm.
- After becoming a provisional member, you are permitted to complete 5 subjects – Taxation, Accounting, Auditing, Management Accounting, Capstone/Ethics. These 5 subjects can be enrolled in any order- except for the capstone module that must be done at the last.
- There is also a mandatory 3 years of mentored practical experience. The mentor must be a CA full member (can be confirmed by asking the customer care personnel at CA ANZ) at your firm or at a different firm.
Every module’s assessment has (except for the Capstone):
- Three online assessments (MCQs) – 20% weightage in total,
- Final examination (written) – 80% weightage (three hours plus 15 minutes reading time, open book).
To pass the entire module, candidates must pass the Final Examination (achieve 50% or more of the available marks) and pass the module overall (achieve 50% or more of the available marks).
The online exam is quite laid back here. You just need to be aware of the information and have your concepts cleared to pass the exam. You will get online exam practice questions. No special effort is required.
If you need to get your concepts crystal clear then you may have a need to refer different authors else books provided by the Institute is enough.
University library and public libraries are a good resource for this, and if unavailable here then you can buy the books online. You can have a look on the internet for the popular author’s books for the subjects.
- Individual and team-based written assessment – 20% weightage
- Team-based presentation – 20% weightage
- Final exam (written) – 60% weightage
Details can be found on the dedicated website of CA ANZ.
- Yes, there is a CA study masterclass (optional) which is developed by CA ANZ to provide additional support to the students.
- It has face to face workshops, interactive webinars, expert help, exam practice, study materials, and discussion forums.
- 33% of people who pass the modules have taken help from the masterclass.
CAN YOU GIVE ALL 5 SUBJECTS OF CA ANZ TOGETHER?
- No, only 1 subject per semester (this is suggested, not sure if that is a legal requirement) can be enrolled in.
- There are 3 semesters in a year.
- Only 1 subject can be enrolled in from a combination of 3 subjects.
- Have a look at the timetable on the website for details (I have attached an image).
- I would suggest everyone, who are planning for this program, to have a look at the policy documents which can be found on the CA ANZ website.
- I have attached a link below for your convenience: https://www.charteredaccountantsanz.com/become-a-member/ca-program-policies
More about CA ANZ
- We have unlimited attempts but only for 6 years from the date, we become the Provisional member.
- Within this time frame- we need to complete the final 5 modules and 3 years of practical experience component.
- We can complete a maximum of 2 modules without having related employment.
- After that, we need to have a job to complete the remaining 3 modules with mentored work experience.
- The mentored work experience of 3 years is equivalent to a job, where one gets paid well unlike in India.
- The minimum time taken to complete the exams is 2 years (if cleared all the modules in 1st attempt), and 3 years for work experience. So in a total of 3 years, you can become get a Chartered Accountancy diploma/degree in hand from CA ANZ.
WHY DID I CHOOSE CA ANZ OVER CPA?
- I chose to be a Chartered Accountant over CPA because the former program trains you better in becoming a Tax consultant (from my research!). This is because of the assessment structure it has i.e. written exams, where you do the same thing for giving any advice to your clients.
- CPA’s assessment – 6 modules including 2 electives with 3 years of mentored work experience. A mentor can be CA or CPA. CPA consists of MCQs only (open book) which is comparatively easier with a higher pass rate.
- Open book means – Any form of hardcopy (written or printed) materials with no quantity restrictions are permitted in the exam hall. You will get only 3 hours to write the exam and the questions aren’t straightforward because the exam is open book. You will barely get time to refer to your materials during the exam. Have a look at the link below to help you prepare for open book exams: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLf5xYrAEFY
- People who are unable to clear CA with few attempts, take a transfer to the CPA program and get the CPA degree.
- Most companies prefer Chartered Accountants over CPA’s. However, both have great demand. So it all depends on one’s career goals!
- All Accounting related interviews are formal and must be attended in a suit with a blazer and a tie on.
- It is recommended to meet all your professional contacts in the same professional attire if meeting them during business hours (8.30 am – 5.30 pm) over a coffee or at a lunch at the location of their convenience.
- Always respect their time and be punctual and proactive, thereby creating a long-lasting impression for yourself.
- Big 4 Accounting Firms have the same interview process here – That is 3 rounds and a written test.
- Mid-tier firms may have 2 rounds of interview (1st with the HR manager/Director and 2nd with the Director/another Director).
- Small size firms may have only 1 interview (with the manager/owner).
- Always carry your CV, unless told specifically by the recruiter as not needed in which case they will have your resume printed out for you and themselves.
- Most of the times you will be asked behavioral based questions (use STAR technique to answer them), and you may be asked some basic technical questions if you are a fresher (nothing in too detail).
- You can always ask the interviewers a few questions about your expectations or anything you need an answer to.
- Whether it’s an interview or a casual meetup, we address a person here by their 1rst name (you can use “Sir” to address Indian/Asian elders).
- Most companies also require a cover letter.
- In Australia, we have a completely different format for the resume. Samples can be found online.
AUSTRALIAN ACCOUNTING STANDARDS
- Australian Accounting Standards for-profit companies comply with IFRS, and this must be expressly stated in the company’s annual reports only if it is complying with all the policies of IFRS.
- For non-profit companies, there are “Reduced Disclosure Requirements” which companies comply with due to information deficiency, and this leads to non-compliance with the IFRS.
BOOKS TO UNDERSTAND AUSTRALIAN ACCOUNTING STANDARDS AND CORPORATE TAXATION
- Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand’s Financial Reporting Handbook 2017, John Wiley & Sons Australia.
- Australian Taxation Law 2018, Oxford University Press, Robin Woellner, Stephen Barkoczy, Shirley Murphy, Chris Evans, Dale Pinto.
- Core tax legislation and study guide, Oxford University Press, Stephen Barkoczy.
SALARY OF A FRESH ACCOUNTING GRADUATE
- In Adelaide, the average salary of a fresh Accounting graduate is $50,000 p.a.
- The salary also depends on the company (public and private- big, mid-tier, small).
- The salary of a fresh Chartered Accountant is between $60,000 and $75,000 p.a.
NOW IT IS YOUR TURN!!
I’d like to hear from you:
Have you considered moving to Australia to study or to work? Or have you considered pursuing CA ANZ or CPA Australia?
Or maybe you have a question about something you read.
Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.
If you have a specific question for Ketan, comment below and I will connect you to him for sure 🙂