According to Mrs. Tagalakis, it is important to be aware of economic changes within the Auditing community. Thus she recommends students to participate in Accounting Associations such as the CICA, CAAA and JMAS. The John Molson Accounting Society (JMAS) is an academic association in the John Molson School of Business. Its purpose is to expose Accounting students to the professional Accounting orders, the faculty and the employers. JMAS organizes conferences, cocktails and activities in order to help accounting students get involved within the accounting community.
By becoming a member, students will develop useful skills within the accounting community such as team work, decision-making and effective communication. This association provides accounting students at Concordia the opportunity to meet employers of key firms within the Montreal region; a great way to start building connections. The Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) was first established in 1902 as the Dominion Association of Chartered Accountants. From 200 members in 1902 to nearly 68, 000 chartered accountants and 8, 000 students in Canada and Bermuda, CICA has now been established over 100 years.
Their vision is to provide leadership to the members of the CA profession. CICA provides information on anything and everything about the CA profession. They inform the public on what is a CA, the skills, academics and experience required to become a CA, as well as an oversight of accounting in general. On October 2002, CICA established the Auditing and Assurance Standards Oversight Council. Its purpose is to overlook the auditing and assurance standards in Canada set by the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (AASB).
As a volunteer, one may participate on committees, study groups, advisory groups or in task forces. Volunteers who are chosen for the Standards area are assigned tasks related to accounting, auditing and assurance. The Canadian Academic Accounting Association (CAAA) consists of “accounting educators, professional accountants and others” who are interested in researching on accounting and related areas in order to encourage excellence in post secondary accounting programs within Canada as well as other Canadian issues. On the CAAA website, the organization provides browsers with Canadian academic accounting links.
Information and location of Canadian universities are provided on their website. In order to improve communication within the Canadian academic accounting community, CAAA has people who play the role of liaisons between the association and the academic accounting community. These liaisons provide information to students about events, awards and the organization’s newsletters. There is a liaison at almost every post-secondary institution in Canada. Figure 1: Comparison of women workers and men workers within different Accounting Associations
Professional Journals: There are several Professional journals in accountancy such as Dividends, Managerial Auditing Journal and Career Insider Accounting. The Dividends is an accounting journal issued at the GM building of Concordia University, by the JMAS. It provides information on the different accreditations of accountancy as well as important announcements such as seminars and conferences organized by JMAS. Dividends also provides Concordia students with tips on how to join associations, how to write their CV’s and how to choose their courses.
By going to the GM building on the second floor, students are able to get a copy of JMAS’ journal. The Managerial Auditing Journal provides useful information concerning management and more specifically, auditing. This journal updates readers with any changes within the auditing profession. Key issues discussed include: career issues, communicating the results of auditing, environmental auditing, ethical considerations, management theory and auditing practice, people and assets auditing as well as social auditing processes. Career Insider Accounting is a journal that is published annually.
This journal provides information concerning any changes within the accounting profession. This journal also interviews key people within the accounting profession and provides advice to students on how to plan their careers in accounting. Accounting association, employers and accounting clubs are also discussed within this journal. Key People: In Auditing, Sheila Fraser, David A. Leslie and Denis Boivin, are key people within the auditing professional. Sheila Fraser is Canada’s Auditor General. She’s one of the most well known and important people within the auditing community.
Ms.Fraser is responsible to conduct independent audits of the government’s employees and operations to the Canadian Parliament. She has to ensure that the governments operations are managed efficiently and economically. David A. Leslie is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Ernst and Young. Being part of the firm’s Americas Executive Board and the Global Executive Board, Mr. Leslie contributes in setting the universal strategies and operations for Ernst and Young. Mr. Leslie is an important player in the auditing community since he is the CEO of one of the leading global accounting firms.
He was named Mississauga’s Businessman of the Year in 1991. Mr. Leslie was also made a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario. Denis Boivin is the president of the leading global accounting firm Deloitte and Touche. He is a major person in auditing and advisory services. He has participated in several various activities organized by the firm, such as the Human Resources committees, Strategic Planning and Risk Management. His involvement, dedication and expertise have made Mr. Boivin an important person in auditing. Certifications:
There are three main Canadian accounting designations that are available to an accountant: CA, CGA and CMA. However, there are specific requirements needed for each of these Certifications. By developing expertise and honesty within the accounting profession, Chartered Accountants (CA) add credibility to financial statements. In order to be a CA, one needs to have strong ethical values and to have knowledge within the following fields: arts, science, accounting and business. As for a Certified General Accountants, they ensure the profitability of business by overlooking their financial statements.
A CGA focuses on the management of liquid assets and financing. The third Canadian accounting designation available to an accountant is a CMA. A CMA is a tam leader that manages complex projects that often have large budgets. They are involved in every aspect of an organization and are not passive. Another accounting designation that is available to an accountant is the American accreditation, CPA. The CPA, has the same title as a CA, the only difference is that it is American and not Canadian. CPA’s are specialized accountants with the knowledge of US GAAP.
Conferences: On November 8th and 9th, 2003, there was a conference held by the CAAA concerning research on contemporary Accounting. Upcoming conferences include the UCAC and the Canadian Conference on IT Audit. The Undergraduate CA Conference (UCAC) organized by JMAS will be held this year at the Holiday Inn in downtown Montreal on the week-end of January 30th, 31st and February 1st. Also, the Canadian Conference on IT Audit, Security, and Governance is being held on March 29, 2004 in Toronto. It is a two-day conference that will end on April 1, 2004. CONCLUSIONS
In conclusion, this report provided adequate and useful information about the Auditing community for students who intend to further their education in Auditing. It included information about Canadian leading Accounting firms and their in house training programs. It also introduced three key people within the auditing profession. Students now have a clearer idea of the job description of an auditor, the entry level salary of an auditor and the names and descriptions of certain associations and journals that students could participate in and subscribe to.
This report improved the knowledge of students who are continuing their education in Auditing, by providing them with a better understanding of its Professional Community. RECOMMENDATIONS In order to have a better understanding of the Auditing Profession, students must take initiative to get involved within the Auditing Community. It is important to research on important firms and know key people within the community. It is also important to be aware of entry level salaries of an auditor and to examine if the job criteria relates to a student’s qualities and expectations.
It is essential for students to attend cocktails, conferences and to read journals in order to be aware of current events in the field of accounting. Joining associations and researching on the certifications of accounting, help students understand that accounting is more than just numbers, but also being active within the Professional Community. Also, participating in extracurricular activities makes a student’s resume more complete and provides students with the opportunity of meeting new people.