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CA or Marketing executive? - Printable Version

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CA or Marketing executive? - jsethi1 - 08-28-2009 08:51 PM

This is Jaweria and I just wanted your help in determining my career choice.
Currently I m doing BSc hon. from LUMS (first year) and I plan to do a double major in Econ. and humanities.
The field of work that interests me the most is marketing. And I don’t want to become an economist because maths is not one of my favorite subjects.
The other option available to me is to do ACCA followed by CA. And although I am not a big fan of accounts but I know that if I start off with that too, I will manage becoming a CA Insha’Allah, because I can study hard.
Now what I wanted to ask is, of these two fields which one would be more rewarding for me in <u>''pure monetary terms''</u>. I know there is no Job satisfaction in CA but if the monetary rewards that a CA gets are way higher than what a marketing executive of an established company gets (after doing my Msc international marketing from abroad that is) then I am willing to forgo LUMS and marketing once and for all. This is because with lums comes attached the hostel life and staying away from home for 4 years part. If it is not worth it in the end, then I would rather stay with my family and do CA.

So please help me get rid of this confusion of mine.
I need to get make up my mind before 10th of September.

Kind Regards

p.s. if u are also able to give me a fair comparison of how hectic a CAs life is as compared to that of a marketing exec. Once all the educational process is over, I’d be highly obliged. )

- Nauman - 08-29-2009 07:37 PM

Two totally opposite fields I honestly don't see how you can compare the two its like comparing apples with oranges. Do not weigh your choice on the basis of monetary rewards, CA usually pays well but there are CAs who end up earning lousy salaries and there are marketing execs who earn more then some CAs. I would suggest go with what you are interested in.

- jsethi1 - 08-29-2009 09:24 PM

i know dese fields are not very much compareable. and i know i shud do wot interests me.dats wot everyone says. but i am pretty much okay with doing somthin dat doesn interest me at all nd making additional 2-3 lakhs per month dan doing somethin dat does interest me but is not rewarding
get it now?
so ppl plzz help =(

- kamranACA - 08-30-2009 10:23 AM


The question you have raised carries utmost importance at the stage which you have just stepped in. Every one has to choose his/her preferences in life on the basis of longer term objectives may it be the higher earning potential, easier satisfied life, settling down back at home with quality education (mainly in case of females), or other greater objectives like research or social welfare etc.

However, in majority of cases at developing and dependent economies the driving factor for studies and career building is the higher earning potential.

I believe that every one speaks of his own experiences of life and a very few can produce a reliable and un-biased judgment or analysis.That's why whoever opines whatever in response to your query (including myself) it can only be taken as a rough estimate of future outcomes. No one in the world can tell you of your future fortune in advance. This has to be kept in mind.

I am an accountant (CA) working in profession since more than 10 years including training period and having post qualification tenure of roughly half a decade.

To my apprehension and belief the ingredients needed to raise a quality successful accountant are quite similar to the characteristics required by anyother quality professional be it of whatever field. This I mentioned because people largely bifurcate marketing and accountancy on the basis of level of inter-personal, presentation and communication skills required for each of them. In this era, believe you me, there remains no difference. Both professions require all the attributes baecause you have to handle complex situations, face complex and critical people, convince a range of people who may or may not be well informed, compete others in perpetuity, produce quality solutions, and become custodian and protector of other's interests.

Notwithstanding the above, I must remind, the ethical, legal and statutory requirements for and limitations on accountants are too much higher when compared to any other professional field; even when compared to doctors and lawyers. This may be difficult to understand but is a fact. A little example; if an accountant in practice defaults his credit card payment, he may no more be allowed to continue his practice unless has cleared and settled the issue. There is a long list which sometimes makes the accountants (specially in practice) to feel regrets for their decision of being accountants. Yes, this feeling arises where some one attaches importance to all ethical and other desciplinary requirements.

So, in my view you have to think and discuss a lot before taking the decision and may need to understand each profession in depth with all its majors and minors. I must mention that although earning potential is a driving factor but should not only be a reason.

As far as earning is concerned, let me tell you that in Pakistan marketing is mainly purposed for exports. The ratio of other engagements is not that convincing and rewarding. Therefore, in exports, marketing gives you rewards only when you establish personal contacts with international traders and can convince them to place their attention to your products. Cropping this up requires a heck of time. Apart from exports and export oriented industries there can be a number of openings for marketing or public relationing in a number of sectors including financial, media, education, insurance etc but either these are meager in number or provide far lesser opportunities for flourishing a much rewarding future.

In comparison, accountants have a much higher market demand and can build their career either in professional practice or in any of the business sectors. You can never undermine the importance of any sector specific expertise.

On the basis of probabilities, to my understanding, accountancy profession is better than marketing although the both cannot strictly be compared.

Salary levels in each field can be higher beyond expectations. However, on lower side there can be witnessed a huge gap between the two. The lower end of accountancy is far far better than marketing.

On career building aspects, god fathers can be of help in any field of life regardless of whatever capabilities you carry or don't carry. However, in accountancy field, again to my apprehension, there is a far lesser need of having a god father.

I hope you will take a well informed and suitable decision for your future.



- jsethi1 - 08-31-2009 04:44 PM

Thanks alot kamran..u were of great help )
As u r a CA yourself..i am glad i came across u..bcoz there are a lot of questions on my mind regarding this field.
how hectic is a CA's life? i have heard that the hardest years of a CA's life are those which he spends in education and articleship. After that he just relaxes and makes money like anything. As in the only work involved is signing papers and supervising junior that so? or is dere some serious hardworking involved? considering the fact that i am a there any involvement of unsocial working hours in a CA's life? and how much does an everage CA earn per month?

Secondly, ere i wud like to narate the incident which made me join LUMS. i was very confused as to which field i shud opt for. And in the end i opted for CA. i went to this CA institute to get myfelf registered.. After my short interview with the vice principal i mentioned that i had 3As in o levels nd stright in A levels and i got admitted into LUMS. she asked me to hand over all the forms and was like 'phr tum yahan kya ker rhai ho..go to for sure'. She told me that this is an opportunity that i shouldn't miss. And since she was the Vice principal Of that institution, it was strange that she was directing me towrads another institution. which meant LUMS was somethin worth it. she told me if i dont like it ere at LUMS i can go back to her after a month and she ll admit me.

So its like although i do like it ere i still a lil concerned about my future. And thats why i posted ere on this forum. So do u still adhere to ur statement that doing BSc hon. from 'LUMS' follwed by MSc 'international marketing" by a renowned institution like oxford or lse or stanford wont in the end be as rewarding as becoming a CA would be?

- jsethi1 - 08-31-2009 04:46 PM

13As in o Levels that was*

- kamranACA - 08-31-2009 08:59 PM


The situation you narrated is amazing. I mean it really made me to laugh for the way you described it.

Anyway, keeping the things ***er I must congratulate you for the fabulous scores you made in your 'O' and 'A' levels. I believe, we at this country are in dire need of confident, strong, hardworking, self reliant and assiduous students. I always believed that our prime problem is lack of education and heaps of illiterate and misdirected people. Whenever I see such a growing asset like you (or other like Odyssee, another young member of this forum) I feel real sense of pleasure. Keep it up!

Coming back to your queries, let me again remind you that no one in this world can tell you your future beforehand. There are always loads of contingencies attached to any such prediction, based upon however accurate assumptions. So my comments or explanation can only be indicative in their nature and you have to rely upon each and everything using your own skepticism based approach of confirming the things.

The comments you received from the Principal are reflective of so many things which he/she might has not discussed in detail. She may be knowing the hardships of CA training and studies which our students face and which may make it further stiff for a female. These include very stiff and quality examination procedures and tight marking policies of ICAP which normally shunt out all the trash from the grain. I am sorry for these words but this goes in similar way. The training, which is a must, is really a challenging task; it is time/efforts consuming, in some cases irritating, little bit disgracing, and in fact the real hardship which makes the people cry against the profession. I used to say that it may be declared harder than a military training in some facets. However, I was, am and will always be of the view that training is the difference between CA and all other accountancy qualifications. It is the magic which, if imparted properly, makes a student gem and pearl. But it creates the value in the way it deems fit. The difficulties which you face, manage, mitigate and go through make you to learn what the laymen cannot even understand. This is a long debate and I don’t have much time to engage in it.

On the other hand, LUMS looks to be executive, disciplined, caring, pampered, systematic, gradual, carrying lesser chances of failures (and for such reasons, easier) in generality. No one here would say that LUMS is a bad option. The choice is one's own. Both fields are quite dissimilar, both can produce very good monetary outcomes and both can create the level of elevation you dream for. At the same time certain contingencies can arise in whatever you do, or plan to do, since fate is not what we narrate by our own hands; rather, we can only affect it a little bit to the extent allowed to us.

Keeping in view the longer term plan mentioned by you regarding marketing and the background of your previous results, I don't feel you will face any problem in CA as well.

Similarly, your plan of "marketing" is not bad and may make you to earn pretty well.

However, as opined earlier, I still believe that accountancy is a wider and more absorbing field when compared to marketing since in today's world accountants are not merely deemed to be the number crunchers. Rather, they are taken to be advisors, consultants, planners, managers, conceivers of the ideas, programmers, ERP solution providers, system developers, and what not and what not; and are hired in every sector invariably for every department, even including marketing and human resource functions. This makes CA multifaceted and quite flexible when compared to others.

Earning is again something dependent upon what God wants us to earn. As a generalized range CAs’ earnings may range from Rupees 100,000+_ per month with Car and benefits (for fresh qualified) to Rupees 1,500,000+_ per month with 2 or 3 cars, residence and other benefits (for experienced and elite professionals).

This is not a word of bible and there can be others who may be earning too much higher than the range mentioned above; specially those who are in practice and the ones who are settled abroad.

As per my rough estimate marketing people may also be earning similar higher figures. However, I feel their lower end starts around 25k to 30k and in some cases (other than LUMS) even lesser than this.

I hope this will be helpful.



- amahmood_satti - 09-01-2009 01:48 PM


Visiting the following link might be of a bit help to you in choosing your career however, comments made by Mr. Kamran should be enough to make your career choice.



- kamranACA - 09-01-2009 05:00 PM


It appears the survey site did not take into account CAs. You see they have not even mentioned of it.

For rest of accountancy qualifications (as they have mentioned) their survey result appears to be some what as per general expectation.

I believe, a lot depends upon personal capabilites; however, one of my students who is CA Intermediate (attempted module E but could not got through) has two days back been appointed by a renowned entity at Rupees 75,000 per month with car. He completed his training in third week of August 2009. Just to emphasize; he is not a qualified CA and is quite fresh in the market.



- Osama Rules - 09-01-2009 11:08 PM

I have read this forum & must say that it was useful for me.
I am doing my A levels in accounts,business & maths.
My Olevel results were 6A* & 2B.
I would like to do ACA,ICAEW from pak so will anyone pls tell me the institutions offering it.

- amahmood_satti - 09-02-2009 02:37 PM

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, san" id="quote">quote<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by kamranACA</i>
<br />Mahmood,

It appears the survey site did not take into account CAs. You see they have not even mentioned of it.

For rest of accountancy qualifications (as they have mentioned) their survey result appears to be some what as per general expectation.

I believe, a lot depends upon personal capabilites; however, one of my students who is CA Intermediate (attempted module E but could not got through) has two days back been appointed by a renowned entity at Rupees 75,000 per month with car. He completed his training in third week of August 2009. Just to emphasize; he is not a qualified CA and is quite fresh in the market.


<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></font id="quote"></blockquote id="quote">

Probably you missed to read the note given below the survery results of each profession. However I copy detalils of Finance & Accounting from the link above. Here it goes as


8. Finance & Accounting

Entry Level 10,000 - 25,000*
<font color="red">5 Years 36,100 - 90,250*</font id="red">
Growth Rate 261%**
Job Satisfaction Satisfied
Popular Institutions LUMS, IBA, NUST, UCP & ICMAP

As a professional in Finance, one thing is for sure, one can calculate one’s own worth by checking the value you bring into the company. As a savvy part of the company, one is better placed to make it to the top if one possesses merit, a superior experience and a bit of clever
industry study. Growth in this field is not particularly great for midlevel professionals despite passing the test of heightened competition and high volume of the first few years. <font color="red">Chartered Accountants and ACCA’s significantly contribute to this career’s entry in the top salary bracket since the demand for them far outstrips non-accredited accounting professionals.</font id="red">

Well CA intermediate with 3-5 years of articleship with a CA firm cannot be considered as fresh in term of experience and normally does not start at an entry level job. So, it should be considered in the salary bracket as highlighted above that is (<font color="red">5 Years 36,100 - 90,250*</font id="red">) which surely justifies the example quoted by you.


- kamranACA - 09-02-2009 10:52 PM


I checked the footnote referred by you. However, to my understanding this does not refer to the salary levels given as a range which in fact is their survey result.

You will see that beneath the salary range they did not mentioned of CA although the qualifications mentioned by them no where referred part qualified ones like CA Inter.

I was co-relating it with salary level since it has been the primary concern of Jaweria.

I agree that CA Intermediate well trained and having good capabilities should not be deemed as fresh in generalized terms but in fact even qualified CAs, who leave the firms after training, are considred fresh.

Focussed and fixed job responsibilities are always different than the training. Training makes some one to build up the ability of getting best suited in at varied professional situations and for diversified roles.



- amahmood_satti - 09-03-2009 06:01 PM

Dear KamranACA,

Although newly qualified CAs are considered fresh in the market yet other degree holders such as fresh MBAs, Mcoms and even fresh ACMAs cannot be deemed at par with fresh CAs. No comparison at all. The reason, why fresh CAs get most of the good positions as compared to fresh MBAs and Mcoms, is their abilitiy to fit into different job roles and responsibilies in finance, accounts or audit.

I agree that focussed and fixed responsibilities are different from training but the purpose and essence of training is to inculcate the skills which are required to take up focussed and fixed job responsibilities.

However, survy re****s might not as accurate as the real situation is, I agree.


- kamranACA - 09-03-2009 08:19 PM


The difference you are pointing out, I agree, does exist and keep on carrying its impact for life long. There is no short cut to practical exposure and training.

This is the element which, coupled with quality exam procedures and stiff marking policies, makes CA superior and most desired for any position.



- Osama Rules - 09-05-2009 08:53 AM

i appreciate this conversation[^] but people pls have the courtesy to answer my question[?]
I will be waiting[)]