How and Why of becoming a Company Secretary
If there is any job which can lead to working with the top tier professionals of a company from day one, it has to be that of a Company Secretary.
Right from the incorporation of the company, to everything legal, all the advisory thereafter is taken care of by a Company Secretary.
Hence, if you have always dreamt of a job where you could juggle various key roles, this job is for you.
In this era of start-ups, we read about so many people making it big with their hard work and skills.
Truth is, other than technical skills, there are also many other things which are required to run a company smoothly and a good knowledge of company laws is one of them. Therefore, companies’ act 2013 has regarded a CS as KMP i.e. Key management personnel. KMP are those people without whom it is impossible to run the company.
The list of key personnel includes CEO (chief executive officer), CFO (chief finance officer) and director of course. Guess who is next on the list, Company secretary 🙂
If you have read this article so far then you have an interest in working with CEO, CFO and directors from the very first day.
A company secretary once was quoted as saying, “I am asked to order the taxes, and I do. Then I am asked to make the sandwiches or order them, and then I do. And then I do a whole lot of other things which really add value, but I get criticised for having forgotten the cucumber. You know what I do? I smiled. I handle it well. That’s the role. There are different expectations.”
This role not only requires working but to also advising them. If you are all excited to know about the pay package, the work description, their lifestyle and most importantly what you have to do to become one, read on!
Before the work description there is a little fun fact ‘every company with a paid capital of Rs. 5 crores or more needs to appoint a full-time company secretary’.
Watch the above video to have a practical insight into a Company Secretary’s life.
As our country is progressing and the law enforcement is getting better day by day, CS, of course, will have a huge demand in the upcoming decade.
According to the ICSI (The Institute of company secretaries of India), a Company Secretary:
- CS incorporates the company, coordinates with the shareholders, advice the board of directors about their legal roles and responsibilities.
- A company secretary acts as an arbitrator between the company and its board of directors.
- Company secretaries are also involved in the formulation of new policies for the company.
- They manage the public issues, dealing with acquisitions and mergers etc.
- They also negotiate with various government bodies on behalf of the company. CS is basically the face of the company.
- CS handles all the legal issues of the company, also referred as the compliance officer.
- Ensures that Board procedures are both followed and regularly reviewed and provides guidance to Chairman and the Directors on their responsibilities under various laws.
- Commands high position in the value chain and acts as conscience seeker of the company.
There are so many profiles in which a CS can work and few of them are listed below
- Legal manager
- Legal and company secretary
- Legal documentation
- Secretarial liaison
- Corporate governance
- Corporate law
- HR administration
With the growth of the corporate sector, the scope of company secretary course and demand for it is also growing.
There are opportunities in both private and public sectors.
Banks and financial institutions, the Department of Company Affairs, stock exchanges, company law boards and government departments etc. provides ample amount of opportunities.
Now, how can you become a CS?
Courses and examinations
- 10+2 pass or equivalent has to undergo three stages to pursue the Company Secretaries Course i.e.
- Foundation Programme
- Executive Programme
- Professional Programme
- After Graduation has to undergo two stages of the Company Secretary-ship i.e.
- Executive Programme
- Professional Programme
Foundation Programme can be pursued by 10+2 pass or equivalent students of Arts, Science or Commerce stream (Excluding Fine Arts)
Executive Programme can be pursued by a Graduate of all streams except Fine Arts.
The website of ICSI has very vividly explained the exam procedures and the fee structures so you can visit the site for further information regarding that.
Benefits of becoming a CS
- A CS is key managerial personnel.
- There are easy internships available after pursuing the course.
- This course is definitely a package enhancer. If you are studying law or any other undergraduate course which is related to finance or law, CS adds a lot to its worth. It gives you an immediate edge over other candidates.
- This course is also recognised in various universities to apply for PhD studies
- In commerce and management field this course qualifies you to become a lecturer.
CS as a course is designed to completely understand all the practical aspects of a company legally and financially. It is an extremely challenging and interesting course. This takes us to the next discussion.
How should one approach the CS exams?
This is definitely not an era in which you can survive with just a single degree. In our view, a supplementary degree would satisfy the growing need of the market.
So, what should one do?
Certifications, online courses, and on-going courses like CS should be simultaneously taken up with the undergrad studies. This not only helps you in getting a much-decorated resume but you also become a master in the subjects you have chosen to study.
You fall in love with the subjects because you get to know them better. This leads to you getting paid better.
We would not advise you to burn yourself in the process, but at the same time make sure you are learning and enjoying your course.
A lot of time is wasted in college just like that, if two-three more hours of work per day can get you a certification like CS, it will be of impeccable importance in future.
The salary of a company secretary increases customarily with the employee’s expanding work experience. Considerable increments are given as the career graph grows.
|Experience (in years)||Annual average salary|
|<1||INR 319,915- INR 805,366|
|1-4||INR 432,260- INR 970,450|
|5-9||INR 502,012- INR 1,768,135|
|10-19||INR 780,000- INR 10,440,000|
|>20||INR 2, 068,743- INR 50,924,279|
After obtaining a ‘Certificate of Practice’ from the Institute, Members of the Institute can go for Independent Practice and salary in that scenario depends on your hard work.
Total time it will take you to become a CS is three years if you clear all the exams in one go. Generally, it takes around five years to go through the entire process of training etc. to become a CS.
Personality traits required to become a CS
- Company laws keep on changing and therefore one must be able to adapt and adopt the changes quickly.
- As it is a key post a lot of data keeps on coming, so one should be able to handle the pressure and keep calm
- There will be so many changes happening and so be well informed is the key to this job. This can only be done if one has the patience to read and understand and learn.
- Good communication skills and ability to connect with people will take you really far in this field.
After reading all of this you must be having few questions and doubts which is obvious.So we have interviewed a Delhi based CS Yamini Tomar.
Read her interview by clicking on the link below and also you can send her your questions via LinkedIn.