CPA Australia and the CPA Program: Find your path to success

Unais Rais CPA (Aust.), a chartered accountant at one of the big four accounting firms in India, has benefitted immensely from CPA Australia’s globally renowned designation that nurtures professional careers and opens doors for strong network connections.


In a competitive and continuously evolving employment landscape, professionals at all stages in their career are looking to enhance their professional resume with globally recognised designations and certifications.

Unais Rais CPA (Aust.), a chartered accountant and member of CPA Australia, believes in exploring ways to add more value and credibility to his professional profile.

After completing his chartered accountancy course from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) in 2016, Rais started working in the forensic dispute field at one of the big four accounting firms in India.

“My work involves investigating frauds and compliance breach,” he explains. “In terms of forensic audits, we conduct investigations into siphoning of funds, procurement fraud, investment frauds, expense frauds and top-level management fraud.”

After working for a few years in this area, Rais was looking for ways to upskill himself and gain a global accreditation to further advance his career.

Rais was familiar with CPA Australia and the CPA Program from his days as an articled assistant. “I knew that the ICAI had certain partnerships with various professional bodies across the globe and I found CPA Australia to be one of the most interesting ones because I needed to give only one paper to receive my accreditation.”

CPA Australia and ICAI have a long-standing collaboration through a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) which was set up in 2009 to provide professionals in India a way to become an associate member of CPA Australia.

In 2018, Rais attended a seminar that helped him understand the process for becoming a CPA member. “The seminar was conducted by ICAI where we received detailed information about how to become a CPA member, documentation and eligibility criterion and pathways to the CPA program.”

After the seminar, Rais registered to become an associate member of CPA Australia, however, he couldn’t pursue the program due to work and personal commitments.

“When the pandemic hit last year, I attended another CPA Australia seminar to refresh my memory about the program and re-activated my membership with the goal to upskill myself and add a globally renowned professional accreditation to my resume,” says Rais.

He believes that with the CPA Australia accreditation, chartered accountants in India can earn an additional professional degree that is economical and recognised across the world.

“This opportunity really allowed me to dive headfirst into networking within a global community and further my passion for improving my knowledge.”

Since being founded in 1886, CPA Australia has become one of the world’s largest professional accounting bodies. It now represents more than 166,000 members working in over 100 countries and regions around the world.

Enhance professional development

For Rais, the CPA Program and its capstone subject Global Strategy and Leadership have proved invaluable in helping him mature as a professional.

“The module and subject matter have been structured in a way that has helped me build on my knowledge and understanding of the skills required for decision-making, managing stakeholders and meeting the organisational goals.”

“In this subject, you’ll learn everything you need to know about building a sustainable business,” says Rais.

“I can confidently say that I’ve gained the necessary knowledge and understanding of all aspects of starting a business, right from supply chain to developing the vision and mission of a business, which will be useful if I start my own business in the future.”

After finishing the CPA Program, “you’ll be able to apply your knowledge and skills to a wide range of businesses such as technology startups, fortune 500 companies and small businesses,” adds Rais.

Build a network with professionals

One of the most amazing things about the CPA Program, says Rais, is the access to networking opportunities across India and the world.

“On CPA Australia’s online learning platform, you can access the list of all the students who are appearing for any particular subject,” says Rais.

“When I selected Global Strategy and Leadership, I could see all the students all across the world who are appearing for this subject with me,” he says.”This helped me in networking and engaging in professional discussions with members in other Indian states such as Delhi and Bangalore, as well as Singapore, UAE and Australia.”

Rais believes that being part of the global CPA Australia community has taken networking to the next level for him.

A world of new opportunities

According to Rais, the CPA Australia accreditation really helps with potential employment opportunities.

“When you have the CPA Australia designation on your resume, the job search becomes more interesting because recruiters, especially in Australia, South-East Asia and the Middle East recognise that you are not just a chartered accountant but a CPA as well.”

“CPA Australia is not only known in Australia but the entire South-East Asia regions, says Rais. “It provides a great opportunity for professionals looking for exciting work experience in these regions,’ says Rais.

“Local CAs, on the other hand, can gain a competitive edge in their career with a credible and world-class designation like CPA Australia.”

Bring in global businesses

“A globally recognised accreditation like CPA Australia opens doors to working with global clients as they value accounting professionals with an understanding of global markets,” says Rais.

He further explains that international clients value and appreciate the advice given by an accountant with a CPA accreditation. This, in turn, Rais says, helps bring in new business opportunities for accounting firms.

As the accounting industry increasingly becomes more globalised, new accountants need to become proficient and responsive to local requirements within global markets.

Rais believes that this is where the CPA Australia designation gives him a competitive edge over his peers.

“If we have a client in Australia where we need to investigate a dispute, then I would get the assignment as compared to my colleagues because the client would prefer to work with a person with a locally recognised designation and understanding of the local accounting requirements.”

The way forward

According to Rais, partnerships like the one between ICAI and CPA Australia are invaluable for professionals looking to get an esteemed global recognition that doesn’t cost a small fortune.

“I’d really like to thank both the professional bodies for opening up opportunities for two professional degrees that open up pathways to a global market.”

Like Rais many accounting and financial professionals have benefited from their association with CPA Australia. Find out how to become a CPA Australia member through our Mutual Recognition Agreement with ICAI at an online information session.

*Note: Any members who embark on the MRA route wishing to undertake

any Public Accounting Services must obtain certification/licenses and/or meet legislative requirements as may be in force in the relevant country and requirements that may be imposed for granting a certificate of practice.

Disclaimer: Content Produced by CPA Australia


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