How is the Job Outlook for the Field of Accounting?

The job outlook for the field of accounting is decidedly strong. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the expected job growth for accountants is 11 percent, which is faster than average. Below expounds on why becoming an accountant is an excellent career choice.

Why There is Stronger Employment Demand

Accounting is the process of recording, analyzing and reporting financial transactions to either internal partners or external shareholders. Accounting is an essential part of every organization, which includes, public, private, non-profit and government groups. Companies rely on accountancy, which is often referred to the universal business language, to numerically make sense of what happens in the company, industry and the economy as a whole. In recent years, there have been serious financial crises and corporate scandals that have damaged consumer confidence and economic stability. As a result, financial regulations are stronger and public expectations are higher, so companies need competent accountants to ensure financial accountability and transparency.

Expected Salaries

Research shows that accountants earn from $33,000 up to $136,000 per year. For example, staff accountants are entry-level financial professionals who enter data, process payments and track information. Staff accountants earn between $33,000 to $57,000 per year. Accountants perform the bulk of financial duties, which includes maintaining records, general ledgers and profit and loss documentation. They analyze financial data, prepare financial reports and interpret financial statements for upper management. Accountants earn between $36,000 to $66,000 per year, but senior accountants earn from $46,000 to $77,000 per year. Senior accountants analyze records concerning assets, liabilities and taxation. They control budgets, set financial goals and investigate variance issues. Additional jobs include financial and Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Certified Public Accountants

Despite corporate scandals and the intense scrutiny of business ethics, the job market for CPAs remains strong. Organizations now meticulously examine every aspect of their entire accounting process to ensure accuracy and integrity. Corporate executives rely on accounting experts to back them up when they personally attest to the veracity of their company’s financial statements. However, the growth of multi-national organizations and the move towards international reporting standards means that the global economy is becoming intertwined and interdependent. Modern companies need accounting experts who understand foreign regulations and global business perspectives. As technology permeates every aspect of business, consumers demand more solutions and executives need better real-time data. Modern accounting professionals need solid IT skills to integrate and implement new software systems.

Industry Demands

There are actually four types of certified accountants. First, public accountants specialize in unique fields such as tax advising, financial planning, forensic accounting and medical benefits. They work in companies, but also non-profit organizations to government agencies. Some public accountants are self-employed consultants. Second, management accountants prepare, assess and distribute financial information to clients and government agencies. For example, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires that listed public companies employ CPAs to publish official reports. Third, government accountants are official stewards of public funds. Fourth, internal auditors are employed by corporations, consulting companies and government agencies to detect fraud and ensure compliance with regulations.

Students should note that in order to become a CPA, they will need a bachelor’s degree with additional graduate coursework and relative work experience.

Another great resource:

50 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Accounting Programs