Difference between MBA Finance and CA – Course and career prospect

4 mins readUpdated on Oct 12, 2018 15:29 IST

In today’s competitive world, a professional qualification or a post-graduate degree has become the need of the hour to widen the career scope and improve the job and salary prospects of an individual. In the field of business and finance, Chartered Accountancy and MBA in Finance are two of the most popular career options among aspiring professionals.

Chartered Accountancy (CA) and MBA in Finance can be considered as two sides of the same coin. Let/s take a look at similarities and difference between the two.

Eligibility Criteria

Chartered Accountant: CA is a professional degree which can be started after completion of class 12th. For completing CA, one need not have to attend any college or be affiliated to any university. Instead, they are required to register themselves with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).

MBA Finance: An MBA is a post-graduate qualification and can be taken up only after completion of graduation.

Programme Duration

Chartered Accountant: the duration for Chartered Accountancy is 4.5 years if pursued after class 12th and 3 years if pursued after graduation.

MBA Finance: The duration for a typical non-executive full time MBA usually ranges from 18 to 24 months.

Admission Process

Chartered Accountant: In order to become a professional CA, one has to appear for Common Proficiency Test (CPT) after class 12th. Else, students upon completion of their graduation, can also enroll for their CA course and can directly start their article ship and appear for their IPCC exams. They need not take the CPT.

Once a student passes the CPT, the candidate would be required to register for the Integrated Professional Competence Course (IPCC). After a 9-month study period, students would be eligible to appear for the IPCC exams. After clearing the IPCC, students have to do 3 years of internship under a certified CA. Students can then appear for their final course exam during the last 6 months of their 3-year article ship. They will be awarded the designation of a Chartered Accountant once they clear the final course exam.

MBA Finance: For gaining admission to an MBA college in India, one must attempt the Common Aptitude Test (CAT) or any of the other entrance exams like XAT, NMAT by GMAC, SNAP, etc. Various colleges accept various test scores and it is important for the candidates to go through the selection procedure as it may vary from college to college. Many institutes have further evaluation rounds like Group Discussions and Personal Interviews. Also, prior professional experience is required to apply for select universities. Click here for the list of MBA entrance exams

During the course of the program, for most institutes, it is mandatory to do an internship. This internship would most likely take place after the first year and before the commencement of the second year. Students also choose to take part in short term projects and case study competitions in order to enhance their CVs.

Career Profile

Chartered Accountant: CA focuses on financial accounting and reporting, business environment and concepts, audit and attestations and regulations. Chartered Accountancy is mainly based on preparing Financial Statements and Accounting. CAs can choose to start their own practice or opt to work with other reputed Chartered Accountant’s firm. Almost every big organization has an accounts and finance department and CAs can choose whether to work in auditing, taxation, financial accounting or banking.

MBA Finance: MBA in Finance mainly deals with Business Finance. It combines theory with various practical teaching methods like case studies, simulations and real world business projects. These enhance the individual to analyse business situations holistically. Opportunities are plenty both in government and private sectors. They can also opt for jobs in MNCs and abroad.

Average Starting Salary

Chartered Accountant: The average starting salary for a Chartered Accountant may range from 6 to 7 lakh p.a. Although bigger firms may offer a much higher package.

MBA Finance: The average salary offered at top B-schools for MBA Finance graduates is around 15-20 lakh p.a.

Job Roles and Prospects

Chartered Accountant: A CA gives advice, audits accounts, and provides trustworthy information about financial records. This might involve taxation, forensic accounting, financial reporting, auditing, forensic accounting, business recovery and insolvency, corporate finance, or accounting systems and processes.

Some of the major responsibilities of a CA are providing financial advice, reviewing the company’s systems and analysing risk, managing financial systems and budgets, undertaking financial audits, advising on tax and treasury issues, maintaining accounting records and preparing accounts and management information for small businesses, etc.

MBA Finance: For MBA Finance graduates, there is a wide range of opportunities mutual funds, insurance, with banks, financial consultancies and other finance-related companies. In the banking domain, one can start their career as Wealth Manager, Branch Manager, Relationship Manager, Operations Manager, Investment Manager, Loan Manager, Financial Adviser (or Counsellor) etc. Whereas in Corporate, one can be the strategy maker, the corporate-financier and can reach the top as Chief Finance Officer or Finance Head. Other possible openings for an MBA in finance include the roles of investment banker, financial planner, real estate planner, investor relations officer, credit manager, insurance advisor, etc.

The top job roles offered for MBA graduates include Asset Management, Hedge Fund Management, Portfolio Management, Credit Risk Management, Derivatives Structuring, etc.

This article is contributed by IMT Ghaziabad

 

Also read: MBA Finance vs MBA Marketing-Which is a Better Career Choice

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