Some 85,000 students are pursuing accounting qualifications in Sri Lanka today of which 25,000 are Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) Passed Finalists; says Sri Lanka Association for Software and Services Companies Vice President, Ravi Abeysuriya.
Additionally, notes CIMA Regional Director Bradley Emerson, 3,500 local students will sit for their CIMA qualification this year, including students from Batticaloa and Jaffna - two areas increasingly opening up in terms of numbers of students.
He further noted that Finance Accounting Outsourcing projects setting up in Sri Lanka were filling a national need since projects on average were 200-seat operations while this career option offered salaries of Rs. 20,000 per month.
Meanwhile, according to WNS Global Senior Vice President Dr. Arul Sivagananathan, his company currently requires six months to hire 100 accountants to keep up with the local attrition rates, ideally these should be hired in two months.
He also revealed that Sri Lankans were frequently lacking in two soft skills essential in this segment, English language and Microsoft Excel, and, while interviewees from within Colombo had these prerequisites, those from outside typically did not.
All three were speaking at the launch of a new three-month CIMA course offered by KaleidoSource that was purpose-built to ready CIMA students for hiring by local outsourcers. Starting in September, the course is open for expressions of interests from students from this month onwards at its website, www.kaleidosource.com.