Chartered Accountant




What is a Chartered Accountant?

What is the difference between an Accountant and a Chartered Accountant?

When the Accountant and the Chartered Accountant are busy with their articles, the Chartered Accountant usually specialises in Auditing or Financial Management.
However, the lines between an Accountant and Chartered Accountant may blur as the Accountant accumulates industry experience. 

See  ACCOUNTANT on our website for more details. 

A Chartered Accountant is responsible for the company’s financial records and they are also in charge of the company’s taxes. This requires careful monitoring and record keeping. Chartered Accountants then analyse this information and advise the companies so that they can make informed, productive decisions which will safeguard investors etc. 

There are at least 8 areas a Chartered Accountant may specialise in:

  • Accounting:

A specialist in this field will advise with regard to planning and managing finances, budgeting, mergers and acquisitions, raising capital or loans, cash projections, purchasing of assets and investment management.

  • Financial Management:

The management and control of company assets, including administration and general business management.  

  • Planning and Management:

This speciality area includes financial planning, long-term forecasts, feasibility studies, allocation of resources and planning for new projects.  

  • Auditing:

Investigate financial reports and advise accordingly.  

  • Costing:

The Chartered Accountant in this particular field will be responsible for all the cost-calculations with regard to cost-effective manufacturing, cost reductions and designing cost-orientated processes. 

  • Computerisation

This CA will be responsible for the development and installation of financial computer systems. 

  • Legal Advising

These CA’s specialise in law (mercantile and company) and handle contracts, leases etc.  They also act as trustees in deceased or insolvent estates.  They can also liquidate companies. 

  • Taxation

They specialise in company tax.

What does a Chartered Accountant do?

  • analyses company’s financial information
  • prepares and reports on financial statements to shareholders
  • captures financial information on computers

Most of the typical tasks are similar to that of an Accountant (See ‘Accountant’ on our website for more details). Also, depending on the area the CA specialises in, their typical tasks could vary.  See above.

Are you … ?

  • interested in a career in accounting?
  • intelligent?
  • determined?
  • accurate?
  • a person with good communication skills?
  • mathematical astute?
  • clear and concise?
  • trustworthy?
  • able to interpret facts and figures?
  • interested in business?
  • a problem solver?
  • logical?

How do I become a Chartered Accountant?

A Chartered Accountant (CA) is the highest professional qualification in accounting in South Africa and CA’s are in extreme demand!     

‘Becoming a Chartered Accountant (CA(SA)) opens doors. It is your gateway to a challenging and exciting career, global mobility, flexibility and great earning potential in the business field of your choice.’ – SAICA



How to become a Chartered Accountant: courtesy of SAICA

To become a Chartered Accountant South Africa CA(SA) generally takes roughly 7 years of academic study and practical training. You need to choose mathematics (not maths literacy) at school and obtain very good results.

You must then study a relevant Bachelors of Commerce degree at a university accredited by (SAICA), complete a training contract and pass the qualifying examinations.  

See under ACOUNTANT on our website for more details.





OTHER CAREERS TO CONSIDER: Financial Planner or Economist

Is becoming a Chartered Accountant the right career choice for me?