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An Accountant handles bookkeeping and the preparation of financial documents for a company. Accountants are usually employed at an accounting firm or a large multinational company in any industry. They typically work a 40-hour week, unless they are part-time, self-employed, or running late for a deadline. They can find work remotely or onsite.
Accountants’ day-to-day tasks depend on the company they work for, their specialization, and whether they’re onsite or remote, but you might find them working with staff to answer questions, compiling reports, crunching numbers in spreadsheets or accounting software, composing emails, meeting with clients or managers, and putting together VAT returns or tax returns.
Accountants should have a firm grasp on accounting and the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). They should understand how to execute bookkeeping tasks, manage accounts payable and receivable, prepare financial statements and reports, compile tax forms, and complete Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) reporting. They should have good ledger and reconciliation skills, writing skills, and strong interpersonal skills. All Accountants must be proficient in Microsoft Excel and/or any accounting or bookkeeping software that their company may use, such as FreshBooks, QuickBooks, or Zoho.
Accountants prepare reports on a regular basis and should have good written communication skills that are clear and concise, while also maintaining stellar interpersonal skills to meet with their clients on a regular basis and explain these reports. They must be detail-oriented, analytical thinkers who are highly organized. They’ll most likely be working with multiple clients on many different deadlines and need to follow strict guidelines throughout. They should have a deep understanding of ethics and use their critical thinking skills to identify discrepancies and report them to their company.
Accounting involves processing, measuring, and communicating financial information about businesses. Accounting often uses software like QuickBooks, Excel, and other office communication tools.
Quickbooks is an accounting software developed by intuit. Quickbooks is primarily used by small and medium-sized businesses to pay bills, execute payroll functions, and accept business payments.
Bookkeeping is the act of recording the financial affairs of a business. This includes purchases, sales, receipts, and payments. The most popular bookkeeping tool is Intuit's Quickbooks
A Accountant in the United States makes, on average, $58,607 annually, according to Indeed.com.
Salaries for Accountants vary by region within the the United States. Listed below are some Accountant salaries for specific areas with the United States compared with the average national salary:
Accountants should have a bachelor’s degree in finance or accounting. They can earn certifications such as Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Certified Management Accountant (CMA), or Certified Public Accountant (CPA). These certifications are not required to practice but are helpful for landing a job and increasing salary. Certification requirements vary state to state and usually include on-the-job training hours and continuing education after the certification is obtained.
Accountants can find job opportunities in-person or remotely on a full-time, part-time, and freelance basis. They can work in any industry for companies large and small or for themselves. The best opportunities for Accountants are found on finance- or accounting-specific job boards, like the ones we’ve compiled here, or through a recruiter.
Accountants can find jobs on these sites:
Accountants can find remote and freelance work on these sites:
For entry-level accounting positions, accounting firms are generally concerned with academic performance. Those who were high achievers during their undergraduate degree will likely receive more invitations to interview. There are on-campus recruitment programs at most universities in the United States, but most candidates will be hired based on their performance in an internship.
Networking is important for any job search and should be done on-campus, during internships, and throughout your job search. Create a list of specific companies you want to work for and seek out jobs on their website, LinkedIn, and job boards. Connect with people who already work at that company through LinkedIn with a genuine conversation starter, such as questions about how they like working for them, what the company culture is like, or anything you’re wondering. This will help you get a better idea of the company you’re applying to and get you some name recognition and rapport within the organization.
Follow up with everyone you meet, including the hiring manager to whom you submitted the application. Thank them for their time! This comes across as thoughtful and considerate, while also reminding them of your interest in the position.
Accountants can find employment in every industry at companies large and small. They can specialize in management, government, financial advising, projects, and other types of accounting. These specializations are often included in their title but are sometimes implied by the company’s industry. Some firms have junior and senior designations based on experience and certifications.
Accountants handle bookkeeping and prepare documents, while Financial Accountants and Bookkeepers are responsible for recording and reporting business operations transactions. Bookkeeping would be a starting career, advancing to an Accountant, and then a Financial Accountant, based on pay.
Accountants who obtain certification as a Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Certified Management Accountant (CMA), or Certified Public Accountant (CPA) can potentially land a job as a Certified Public Accountant, with a significant pay increase. CPAs have met strict educational, testing, and on-the-job requirements that Accountants have not and are certified to do certain advanced tasks that Accountants are not and that is reflected in the salary.
Bookkeepers record and manage financial transactions for businesses of all sizes. Often working as part of an accounting team, they maintain a company's books and produce key financial statements. Some may be responsible for handling payroll and reconciling bank accounts. Bookkeepers are important for the accurate recording of financial transactions, which are then analyzed by accountants and CFOs.Learn about becoming a Bookkeeper
A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is responsible for maintaining, analyzing, and preparing financial records and accounts for organizations and individuals. They have met strict educational, testing, and on-the-job requirements, and gained certification to do certain tasks that Accountants have not.Learn about becoming a Certified Public Accountant
A Financial Accountant is responsible for recording and reporting the business operations transactions over a period of time.Learn about becoming a Financial Accountant