The Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICAI) formerly known as ICWAI (Institute of Cost & Works Accountants of India) is a premier institution of India which offers education and develops the profession of Cost Accountancy in the country.
At present ICWA course has been renamed to CMA which stands for Cost Management Accounting. This course provides you an in-depth knowledge to manage business within the available resources. As a cost accountant, you have to collect and analyze the financial information from all the areas of a company.
This course comprises of three stages, i.e. CMA Foundation, CMA Intermediate and CMA Final. You can pursue this course through correspondence or through online from an accredited university.
Difference between CA & ICWA
- ICWA degree provides the knowledge on how to manage finance competently and CA degree gives you the knowledge of taxation, auditing, and accounting.
- You can apply for CA course after passing 12th while for the ICWA foundation course you have to pass a 10th or equivalent exam from any recognized board.
- CAs are involved in the core accounting work of a company while Cost Accountants are involved in the costing part of a financial transaction.
You should be able to manage cost accounting procedures & methods. You must have a good knowledge of standard concepts, procedures, and practices in the related field.The candidate should also be able to perform several tasks and must have good presentation skills.
Eligibility and Duration
The ICWA course has been divided into three stages which are Foundation, Intermediate, and Final.
ICWA Foundation: Minimum 8 months duration.
ICWA Intermediate: Minimum 10 month duration.
ICWA Final: Minimum 18 months duration.
ICWA Foundation: To apply for this course, students must have passed 10th or equivalent from any recognized institution or board. Candidates who have passed or appearing in 12th are also eligible to apply. Candidates must have completed the age of 17 years.
ICWA Intermediate: Students must have passed the Senior Secondary School Examination (10+2) and Foundation Course/ Graduation in any discipline other than fine arts.
ICWA Final: You can apply for this course after qualifying the ICWA Intermediate course from the institution.
Admissions will be based on ICWAI entrance examination organized by the Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICAI) i.e. Foundation, Intermediate, and Final exam. These examinations conducted two times in a year, i.e. June and December.
Students who are seeking for applying for the entrance examinations in December month are needed to apply latest by 30th June of the similar year. Those students want to apply for exams in June month are needed to apply by 31st December of the previous year.
ICWA Registration Fee:
- ICWA Foundation Course – Rs. 4000/
- ICWA Intermediate Course – Rs. 20000/
- ICWA Final Course – Rs. 17000/
Top Colleges in India
Some good colleges to pursue ICWA & Cost Accounting courses are listed below:
- The Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICAI), Bangalore
- NarseeMonjee College of Commerce and Economics, Mumbai
- Bharathy Educational Centre, Namakkal
- GC Rao Academy, Bangalore
- Knowledge Academy of Research and Education (KARE), Palarivattom
“There are plenty of employment opportunities are available for the ICWA qualified people. Once you have completed the ICWA course, you can start up your career as a Cost Accountant”.
ICWA degree holders are highly demanded in the government sector, private enterprises, development agencies, banking & finance sector, education and training sectors. With the advancement of the economy, demands for cost and management professionals are rising rapidly.
Duties of a Cost Management Accountant
- Plan, study and collect data to determine the costs of business activities.
- Analyze financial information and prepare reports accordingly.
- To work with computer technology related to accounting.
- To give advice to managerial staff about revenues and costs.
- Implement cost accounting strategies to increase a company business.
- To maintain cost accounting system.
Some popular areas where you can find jobs are consultancy firms, developmental agencies, departments of company affairs, training & research organizations, service industry, stock exchanges, public utility sector and other regulatory bodies.
- Finance Director
- Managing Director
- Associate Professor
- Cost Controller
- Chief Auditor
- Cost Accountant
- Chief Accountant
- Chief Internal Auditor
- Financial Consultant
- Managing Director
- Financial Controller
Some Recruiters are:
- Micro Inks Limited
- Inext Infotech Services
- Zexus Air Services Pvt Ltd
- Government and Private Institutions
- ALTRET Industries Pvt. Ltd.
“This is a field which provides satisfaction in terms of position as well as salary for successful candidates.”
In India, you can expect a starting salary between Rs.3 to 4 lacs per annum. Your salaries will also depend upon your working job profile, sector and experience in this field.
In abroad (USA), the average salary of a Cost Accountant is around $53k per annum.
“With good qualifications and experience, the pay packages offered to Cost Accountant are beyond the limits”.