If you walked across the stage this spring to receive a bachelor’s degree in Accounting, then you should feel confident about your decision. Accounting graduates are currently one of the most sought after degree holders. Ranking at No. 3 in the National Association of Colleges and Employers The Job Outlook for the Class of 2014 report, accounting graduates can seek opportunities in government, retail trade, finance, insurance and real estate. With so many areas to specialize in, along with the changes in technology shifting a handful of tasks to automated processes, accountants are increasingly becoming trusted business advisors.
Job Growth & Salary
Graduates can rest easy after graduation knowing that their degree is in high demand. Directly tied to the health of the economy, the industry can expect 13.1% growth between 2012 and 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS also reports that the median annual salary for an accountant is $63,550, or $30.55 per hour. Salaries range by specialty as the best compensated in the industry work within the federal executive branch and for securities and commodity exchanges.
Most graduates with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting go on to obtain the coveted three word title, Certified Public Accountant (CPA). While the overall requirements for becoming a CPA will depend on where you choose to obtain your license, those who are interested in becoming a CPA will have to take the uniform exam set by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Although it is not necessary, most accounting graduates want to accomplish this feat to increase their chances of success in the field. The title simply speaks for itself. Becoming a CPA enhances one’s career path and marketability as a professional who has taken the necessary steps to hold themselves to a higher standard in the business world by working under a set of guidelines and principles.
Insight into the Field
Although there is a bright future ahead for accountants, it’s still important to know what employers are seeking. After all, high demand means high competition, making it harder for those who are unprepared to enter the job market. It’s generally known that accounting firms, businesses and industry groups will evaluate applicants through their resumes, grouping them into certain categories. Considerations include grade point average, leadership positions and personal initiative.
Once you have received a call back for an interview, you must be prepared to showcase your technical ability and thought processes. But the real way to win the attention of an employer is to demonstrate your willingness to learn, a positive attitude and long-term career goals. Most firms are looking for candidates who they can train to become managers and partners. Even if you don’t meet the requirements of the job, you can increase your chances of being hired through your attitude.
Other soft skills that are essential for any entry-level position in accounting are written and oral communication skills, critical-thinking skills, problem-solving skills, and ethical-awareness skills. The need for such skills merely proves the way the field has changed. In the past, accountancy was viewed as crunching numbers and compiling reports to decision makers. Nowadays, accountants are the decision makers and must be able to recognize the ethical issues in any given situation while understanding the difference between legal and illegal measures.
Distinguish Yourself From Others
If you are ready to delve into a rewarding career in the business world, then consider Florida National University’s associate and bachelor’s degree programs in Accounting. Offered on campus and online, students can take advantage of small classes, the latest in education technology, all while attaining in-depth knowledge of the field to jumpstart your career. Contact us today to get started!
Accountant. (2014, January 1). Job Overview. Retrieved from http://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/accountant
Eyden, T. (2013, May 28). AccountingWEB. Hiring Outlook Looks Promising for Accounting Grads. Retrieved , from http://www.accountingweb.com/article/hiring-outlook-looks-promising-accounting-grads/221845
Summary. (n.d.). U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved , from http://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/accountants-and-auditors.htm