Date posted: 3/09/2019 4 min read

International Pathway Program changes this CA's approach to his job

International Pathway Program helps accountant rethink how to get the best out of his role.

In Brief

  • Success in the International Pathway Program (IPP) leads to membership of CA ANZ
  • IPP is well structured and relevant
  • IPP is open to qualified candidates from India, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka
  • Mahesh Kumarasinghe CA completed his initial qualification in Sri Lanka

For Mahesh Kumarasinghe CA, one of the many benefits of doing the International Pathway Program (IPP), run by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ), has been his increased professional confidence.

The course, which he completed in late 2018, also showed him new ways of doing things in the health sector, where he has worked since moving to Australia from Sri Lanka in 2012. Since completing the IPP, Mahesh has been a member of CA ANZ.

Mahesh is financial accountant at Melbourne Health, part of the Victorian health services network, where he supporting the delivery of high quality financial accounting services particularly in salaries and wages providing the analysis and review of payroll related data of more than 10,000 employees.

He says the IPP has changed his thinking about the way he does his job. "It's made me think more about how we can do things differently and better. The public health system is very complex and depends on government funding, so we need to make sure we get the best out of it. Doing the IPP has been very beneficial."

"You can learn so much from the opportunities it presents – the global networking, the information we receive regularly in emails and magazines, the CPD (continuing professional development) programs, the conferences and other events."
Mahesh Kumarasinghe CA.

The IPP is offered to qualified candidates from Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan and Nepal. Candidates spend six weeks working alone to research six case studies, then participate in a two-day workshop. Mahesh did the case studies and workshop in Melbourne.

Having gained his initial qualification at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka, Mahesh saw membership of CA ANZ as a way to increase his credentials in Australia and build trust with others in his industry.

He is most enthusiastic about the program. "It was very well communicated, and the process was well outlined," he says. "The instructions were clear and the environment friendly."

Mahesh also has high praise for the workshop facilitators. "They were excellent. They really engaged with us. It was a good, team-building environment."

He found the workshop subjects enjoyable, relevant and interesting. Some of the case studies were challenging but he was able to use his experience in mainly small businesses in Sri Lanka and Botswana, where he worked before migrating to Australia.

"The knowledge I had gathered in those years was useful and it was an opportunity to demonstrate what I had learnt."

"Even though the case studies were sometimes challenging, the process was interesting, as were the subjects, such as changes in the tax law."

He appreciated the opportunities in the workshop to ask questions of the facilitators and other members of the group.

Mahesh says the program increased his understanding of the wider Australian economy – in a way that was relevant to his present role and, indirectly, how he does it.

He hopes next year to participate in the CA ANZ mentoring program. "For four months you have a senior member as your mentor with whom you have face-to-face meetings. I'm sure this would greatly enhance my knowledge of Australia."

An obvious but important benefit for those who complete the IPP and acquire CA ANZ membership is the wide range of networking opportunities, given the organisation has more than 125,000 members in 190 countries.

Mahesh values his CA ANZ membership highly. "You can learn so much from the opportunities it presents – the global networking, the information we receive regularly in emails and magazines, the CPD (continuing professional development) programs, the conferences and other events, even for specific sectors such as health."

"It has endless benefits and provides endless opportunities."

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