Few careers offer the stability and growth opportunities of accounting. No matter how much data and technology change industries or how fast the global market grows, someone is always needed to manage financial records.
Accountants oversee the heart of an operation. They collect, record and analyze financial transaction data. They also ensure books are balanced and that all proper regulatory measures are followed.
It’s job with many responsibilities and rewards. Getting into it requires earning an accounting degree or a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Management (BSBA) with an Accounting Concentration.
Accounting is a key component to any operation. That’s why almost 1.4 million accountants are currently employed in the country, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That number is only going to grow.
More than 140,000 new accountants will enter the profession by 2026, according to the BLS. That’s a growth of 10 percent over the next decade.
Accountants still handle the duties of auditing, budgeting and ensuring proper payment of taxes. They also have increasingly become a key player in providing data to business leaders that helps them decide on overall strategy.
The global nature of the business world also is expected to expand the need for accountants with expertise in international finance and trade. Accountants also will find jobs growing in the area of international mergers and acquisitions.
Pay For Accountants
When it comes to salary, pay varies based on the accounting job, the industry and the location. Nationally, the BLS reports a median salary for accountants of $68,150 in May 2016. The top 10 percent earned $120,910.
Potential Accounting Careers
Becoming an accountant opens a wealth of fields to choose from. The growth in the economy is expected to lead to more job opportunities. However, those with the proper education and training will be best suited for the top jobs in the field.
Some of the jobs for accountants include:
- Public accountants
- Management accountants
- Forensic accountants
- Government accountants
- Investment accountants
- Loan officers
In addition to earning a bachelor’s degree, many accountants earn designation as a Certified Public Accountant. They also may become a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) or Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA).
Expertise in accounting technology also will benefit those seeking a job in the field. Automation is increasingly used to handle the routine tasks of accounting. Also, cloud computing has changed the way many organizations collect and store business records.
Rather than cut down on the number of accounting jobs, machine learning and automation are expected to increase the time accountants have for more analysis and an increased advisory role for organizations.
With the emergence of online learning, there has never been a better time to study accounting.