23rd May 2023 | By: Admin

How to become a Company Secretary?

Who is a Company Secretary?

As per The Company Secretaries Act of 1980 the Institute of Company Secretaries of India was formed, a prestigious national organization that develops and regulates the profession of Company Secretaries in India. Currently, there are 65000 members and approximately 2.5lakh students enrolled with ICSI. ICSI falls under The Ministry of Corporate Affairs' purview. According to Section 203, certain classes of firms must employ full-time Key Managerial Personnel (KMP), as specified by the Central Government and, Company Secretary is one among those KMP’s.

A full-time company secretary must be appointed by public or private firms with a paid-up share capital of ten crores or more, as per law. A Company Secretary is required to inform the Board on the Company's compliance with all applicable laws, rules, and provisions of the Act. He must make sure that the business adheres to the Secretarial Standards that are appropriate for the organization as issued by the ICSI and approved by the Central Government. A Company Secretary has the responsibility to report fraud if any while carrying out his or her professional responsibilities, he or she has grounds to suspect that a business has committed or is committing an offense involving fraud.

How to Become a Company Secretary?

Any student who wants to enrol in the course and earn their certification as a company secretary must meet the following requirements:

  • Clear 10+2 in any stream from a recognised institution or equivalent is the minimum requirement to register for the first level (CSEET) of the Company Secretary course.
  • After graduation, the applicant who wants to pursue CS simply needs to finish the Executive Programme, Industrial Training, and Professional Programme levels.

Company Secretary: Course Levels

An individual must finish professional training and pass exams in order to be able to practise company secretary ship in a professional capacity. There are four stages in this journey namely:

  1. Company Secretary Executive Entrance Test(CSEET)
  2. CS Executive Programme
  3. Industrial training for a period of 21months under a registered CS
  4. CS Professional

The Company Secretary Foundation course covers four fundamental topics. The Company Secretary Professional level contains three modules, whereas the Executive programme has two core modules. A candidate is said to have passed the Foundation, Executive, or Professional test if they achieve at least 40% overall in each paper and 50% aggregate in all subjects in one sitting. The course can be typically completed in 3 to 5years depending on the time taken at each levels.

What is the Scope of Company Secretary in India and Abroad?

A post-graduate degree has just been equated to the Company Secretary certification by UGC. Students who have cleared the course are now eligible to apply for and take the UGC NET. Now, candidates can enrol in PhD degrees in business or related fields after completion of CS. There are various Memorandum of Understanding’s signed between ICSI and foreign bodies that enables Indian Chartered Accountants to work overseas. For instance, there is a reciprocal membership for members of ICSI and The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA), London on passing of certain papers, exchange of journals etc.

Company secretaries are regarded as one among the most senior position in a company. A company secretary can work as an authorised representative of a company with regard to filing, registering or verifying any document. They can work as a share transfer agent, a secretarial auditor or consultant, or even as a principal secretary. Company secretaries require strong administration skills within the firm, managing legal compliance and ensuring that the decisions taken by the Board of Directors are implemented without any deviation.

To put it in a nutshell, one of the most important members of management is a Company secretary. They are highly influential within the organisation and can determine whether the business will succeed or fail through their choices. Within the corporate governance ecosystem, company secretaries, internal auditors, and external auditors are frequently seen as the traditional gatekeepers. The effective operation of the corporate sector depends on excellent corporate governance, and good corporate governance depends on company secretaries who, in their capacity as gatekeepers, must act honestly and morally in the interests of the organization and the society.

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