After you have studied an ICB course, most people are not aware of the fact that they can apply for memberships at professional bodies. You would assume that the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers and Accountants (ICBA), is the only body you can apply to. The fact is that this is not true. ICBA included, there are five professional bodies you can apply for membership at, after you have studied with the ICB.
Institute of Certified Bookkeepers and Accountants (ICBA)
The ICBA has its roots very deep in the ICB. They used to be one organisation, but split back in 2015. This was due to the changes in academic guidelines and laws. Now the ICB focuses on the education and training and the ICBA focuses on the professional memberships. They give different levels of memberships based on your level of studies and work experience.
There are different requirements you have to meet if you want to apply to the ICBA. The first is you have to hold an ICB qualification and have relevant work experience. You can also apply if you hold an NQF Level 3 or higher professional financial, accounting, bookkeeping, business or office management qualification, and have relevant work experience. You can also apply for membership at student level if you are studying towards an accredited qualification that matches the qualifications stipulated above. You won’t be able to use a designation, as those are for qualified professionals only, but you will get all the other member benefits.
The ICBA aims to certify qualifications and give out designations. This means that the ICBA evaluates your qualifications and work experience, and based on that they give you a certain level of membership. Having membership means that you can use the designation letters behind your name. The ICBA works at improving the image, training and professionalism of their field. Their field being people working in Finance, Accounting, Bookkeeping and Office Administration.
South African Institute of Tax Professionals (SAIT)
You can apply for membership with the South African Institute of Tax Professionals (SAIT) if you want to register as a tax practitioner. They recognise the FET Certificate: Bookkeeping, and the National Diploma: Technical Financial Accounting qualifications. You will need one of these qualifications to become a member of SAIT. Joining SAIT shows that you are a professional. They aim to give you group benefits and the offer you the opportunity of being part of a community. They also believe that South Africa should have a tax system with professional integrity and that everyone must pay their fair share. Random and disruptive collection undermines integrity and respect for the law and they are happy to fight for this cause.
The South African Institute of Business Accountants (SAIBA)
Membership can be applied for with the South African Institute for Business Accountants (SAIBA) if you are looking to do accounting officer duties. Only the National Diploma: Financial Accounting meets its academic requirements to be a member. Joining SAIBA means you can also get designation letters behind your name.
International Association of Bookkeepers (IAB)
The International Association of Bookkeepers (IAB) is a UK-based organisation that is recognised by the British government due to the fact they have money laundering regulations that they enforce. They also supervise their members through these regulations. ICB graduates may apply for membership. This is an international professional body and the partnership between the ICB and IAB is one of the reasons an ICB qualification is internationally recognised. Having an IAB membership will also make you more employable if you choose to look for a job in the UK.
International Association of Accounting Professionals (IAAP)
Another body you can apply for membership with is the International Association of Accounting Professionals (IAAP). They are also based in the UK and they offer recognition for the best business and accountancy qualifications. You may apply if you hold the FET Certificate: Bookkeeping or higher qualification. They offer various networking and professional development opportunities. It is a community for you to keep learning and improving yourself.
Studying an ICB course gives you more advantages than just an excellent education. Joining a professional body gives you endless advantages in itself. As you can see the ICBA is not your only option to register with. The thing is to choose the correct ICB qualification to match the membership you wish to have. Start the journey by registering today.
Written by: Maretha Lubbe
Last updated: April 16, 2019