The accounting profession is a centuries-old field that has been used by businesses large and small and the accountant salary can be very attractive. In fact, for any business to be allowed entry into public markets for investment, they have to abide and conform to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) for transparency of business practices.
The role of the accountant is critical in a number of ways. The accountant helps balance the financial books of a business, he tracks the financial activity both for effect and for review after the fact, and most importantly he protects the business’ coffers by identifying problems as they arise in financial transactions. All of this is done record by record, document by document, analyzing each one to make sure it is consistent with acceptable accounting practices.
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There is no shortage of demand for accountants in business today. Both in general accounting as well as in taxation, accountant trainees who can show an aptitude for their field have significant promise ahead of them. Work can be found both in private business as well as government and public agencies. In fact, for many accountants starting out, spending one’s early years in a government position can help stabilize a personal financial situation and provides free practical training. Such staff can then take their experience and seek higher paying accounting positions on the private side or pursue their Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license.
General bookkeepers can get started in accounting work with just a high school degree. They will need to be able to show a competency at business math and a proven track record at consistent ledger work without errors, particularly in data input.
To earn a typical accountant salary, fully-trained accountant graduates will have a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from an accredited, four-year college. Graduates will be eligible to pursue higher level accounting positions as well as earning their CPA license, allowing independent work. Such accountants are expected to know a full scope of accounting science, including accounts receivable, accounts payable, taxation, general ledger management, indirect cost accounting and overhead rate development, financial statement preparation and general auditing principles.
Potential Accountant Salary Ranges
Starting accountant salary for bookkeepers can range from the low $20,000 annual pay to as much as $35,000. Accountant college graduates can command starting accountant salary pay of as much as $50,000 a year or more if hired into one of the big national accounting firms or corporations.
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