What does a Accountant do?

become an accountant

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Have you ever wondered what accountants actually do? Accountants play a crucial role in managing financial matters for individuals, businesses, and organizations. Their primary responsibilities include tracking financial transactions, preparing financial statements, and ensuring compliance with tax laws. In addition, accountants provide valuable insights and recommendations to help businesses make informed financial decisions. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into the diverse tasks accountants perform and their essential role in maintaining financial stability.

Watch a video to learn what an accountant does:

How to Become an Accountant

Though you may think all accountants have a bachelor’s degree in accounting, a degree is not mandatory. In fact, O*Net OnLine reports a little over 40% of accountants have earned a bachelor’s degree. The rest of the accountants surveyed had earned an associate’s degree or have taken some college courses. Given that over 40% of people in this career field have earned a bachelor’s degree, we’re listing a bachelor’s degree in accounting as step one so you can be competitive in the job market.

Become a Licensed Certified Accountant

become an accountant

To become a licensed certified accountant, you must earn a CPA certification. Accountants who earn the title of CPA have met education and experience standards and they passed the CPA exam. Not all accountants become a CPA. Others gain experience as an accountant while working toward their education and experience requirements and then study to pass the CPA exam. Though the requirements to become a CPA vary by state, the CPA exam is the same for everyone. Learn more about a career in accounting and the CPA exam on the American Institute of CPAs website.

Accountants can choose to become certified in a focused area of accounting. Though this is voluntary, a specialization can earn you a competitive edge over other job applicants. Certifications that an accountant can earn to include a Personal Finance Specialist certification, Accredited in Business Valuation certification, Certified Information Technology Professional certification, or a Certified Fraud Examiner. Each specialization may have its own requirements to meet. For instance, to become a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) you must become a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, hold a bachelor’s degree or meet experience requirements if you do not have a bachelor’s degree, and then pass the CFE exam.

Job Description of an Accountant

An accountant makes sure a company or organization is efficiently operating by accessing their financial records. Duties include analyzing data, finance reports, budgets, tax returns, and accounting records. They send financial reports to their clients that include current financial status, and future trends. They may also recommend ways for their clients to become more financially stable or advise on ways to take advantage of tax incentives.

Those in this career field, can find plenty of job opportunities as accountants can work for individuals, businesses, and government agencies. If you become an accountant, you can expect to work on a computer most of the day and work in an office setting. Accountants also often work full-time but hours do vary throughout the year, especially during tax season.

Benefits of Accounting

step 3 specialize in accounting

Accounting is one of those jobs that do not sound exciting or rewarding, but we want to share some benefits you should consider. After all, you’ve gotten the education and experience, so we are sure you would like to get the rewards it brings. Let’s look at what they are! Accountants have rock-solid stability for employment! No matter the economy, its turns and twists, accountants are always needed! Many like that it constantly changes and offers new challenges. They enjoy meeting new people and keeping the steady clients that have counted on them to keep their finances straight. The public and private clients depend on the accountants.

Accountants benefit from deepening their knowledge of finance themselves. They have noticed that education has helped them manage their budgets, savings, and investments. Understanding their finance is an excellent benefit for their future. Accountants benefit from the time and effort they put into the job and often experience recognition from an employer, such as a raise or promotion. However, when accountants have the experience and clientele, they have the option of going out on their own and beginning a business. Starting a business is always risky, but some accountants like the challenge! The rewards can be amazing!

Accountants like the opportunity to be flexible, like meeting with people outside of the 9-5 hours. They can go to offices, homes, or travel to other places when a corporation requires it. You can do this and make a career that is beneficial to you in many ways!

Article Citations

The accountant job posting was listed on USAjobs.gov.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Accountants and Auditors.
National Center for O*NET Development. 13-2011.01.
The video is Public Domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.

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