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The Non-CPA CPA

01 October 2018

Roger Wang finds that his accounting qualifications give him the edge in his job in banking.

 

Accounting opportunities

Roger Wang has two degrees in accounting, and is a fully qualified CPA, having completed QP after university – but he has never worked in an accounting role. Instead, he has pursued a career in banking, currently working as a relationship manager for Industrial Bank Hong Kong, where his accounting qualifications are invaluable in providing him with a range of skills that allow him to excel.

 

Wang grew up in various places in mainland China including Shenzhen. He first studied accounting at Zhongnan University of Economics and Law in Wuhan. About the CPA Name: Mr. Roger Wang Job title: Relationship Manager Industrial Bank Co., Ltd. Hong Kong Branch

 

“I chose accountancy as my major before I went to university,” he says. “I thought that accountancy could provide me with a wider range of connections for my future career. Accountancy is not just about numbers; it is also about finance, risk management, marketing and credit management. I think accountancy is basic knowledge that can help you to understand a whole enterprise. Also, in Shenzhen I saw friends who had studied accountancy, and they had success in a lot of different types of firm. I thought that an accountancy degree was likely to be more acceptable to the HR departments of big companies.”

 

After finishing his first degree, he moved to Hong Kong, to study for a master's degree in accountancy at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, reasoning that being based in a regional financial centre would also help his career prospects. Unlike most people, who start thinking about an accounting qualification once they graduate and begin their first job, Wang started studying for QP while he was at university.

 

“I was still studying for my master’s degree,” he says. “I thought: the later I study for QP, the less time I will have for my career. The earlier I start it, the earlier I will complete it, which will be very important later, when I can focus on work without sharing my time with exams.

 

He says that QP has helped him in numerous different ways. “I think that I really benefited a lot from studying QP. It provided me with not only familiarity with relevant standards and rules, but also logical thinking and critical judgment. The standards and rules that we need to apply to our daily business are not rigid. The strongest aspect of QP is that the learning is never rigid study of textbooks; it is all about applications. Sometimes learning can be tedious, especially learning about rules and standards, but QP connects them with real life. We learn in order to apply it and turn it to good use.

 

“Although I do not work in the accounting or audit field, I still need to make analysis and judgments based on financial and non-financial indicators. Having studied for QP helps me quickly assess core issues and maintain an analytical mindset.”

 

Roger-Wang

Mr. Roger Wang
Relationship Manager, Industrial Bank Co., Ltd. Hong Kong Branch

 

Expert analysis

Wang started his first job in 2013, as a relationship manager at Bank of Communications Hong Kong, and recently moved to Industrial Bank Hong Kong in the same role. He also acquired a Securities and Futures Intermediary qualification in 2014, and added a Certified Documentary Credit Specialist qualification in 2017. His role takes in a range of responsibilities, including due diligence, writing credit reports and reporting to the bank’s credit committee, processing loan draw-downs and deposits, and administering treasury products such as derivatives. He works with a range of clients, mainly listed companies and state owned enterprises, in industries from metals to chemicals to machinery to real estate.

 

Wang says that his accounting qualification allows him to stand out from the crowd in his work; while some relationship managers have an accounting background, he has never met another one who has a CPA qualification.

 

“First of all, I think my CPA qualification makes me more confident in my job. My boss and colleagues trust me a lot in terms of financial analysis; sometimes they treat me as an expert. Due to my accounting background, I can approach big clients. They trust me to make complex decisions based on in-depth analysis.”

 

Wang is also committed to continuous professional development, regarding learning as a never-ending progress. “As the standards keep being updated, I need to update my own knowledge,” he says. “I mainly focus on two areas: financial reporting and corporate finance. These are the two areas that can help me most in my work. A lot of my clients are listed companies, and the standards about listing are often updated; if I update my knowledge, I can be more confident when talking to my listed clients. And with corporate finance, it is usually seminars about new banking products, not only from a banking viewpoint but also from an accounting viewpoint.

 

“For anyone who works in finance but wants to benefit from QP study, I think the most important thing is to make learning a lifelong career and combine theory with practice.”

 

 

Interview and reporting by Richard Lord

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