There are many types of accounting jobs in the financial sector. Each performs a different range of functions. The employment environment, daily responsibilities, advancement opportunities, and other factors can affect the branches of accounting. This article will provide a breakdown of the various types and careers in accounting into four broad categories. Although different accounting professions may classify accounting careers in different ways, the four categories listed here represent the most common roles within the profession. These four branches are corporate, public and government accounting. A bachelor’s degree is the most common requirement for any accounting job. However, a master’s degree, particularly in the accounting field is strongly recommended. We’ll be discussing the details of each area of accounting.
Accounting for Corporates
Overview: AccountingTools.com published a summary that corporate accounting is the handling and filing of financial data of companies often for external reporting and tax compliance. Corporate accountants need to be familiar with a variety of accounting methods in order to perform their duties. They must also know how to keep accurate records and ensure that their tax and financial submissions are compliant with applicable rules, regulations and standards. These common accounting standards and principles include the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, International Financial Reporting Standards, and the Internal Revenue Code.
There are many job opportunities in corporate accounting. This could involve preparing tax filings or working on financial statements for a company. Financial accounting roles include financial controllers, analysts and chief financial officers (CFO). Traditional financial accounting positions often include managerial responsibilities.
Overview: Public accountants work with clients outside of their company, such as corporations or individuals. Clients entrust them with the responsibility of ensuring that their financial records, statements, and filings are accurate. Public accountants are often involved in tax regulations and financial reporting. They must keep up-to-date with both GAAP as well as the tax code. They should also be familiar with and able to use industry-standard accounting frameworks. Public accountants need to be able to solve problems and pay attention to details. To effectively communicate with clients, public accountants must have excellent people skills.
Opportunities for Public Accounting Jobs: Positions available in public accounting firms that provide services to external clients. Small local businesses that provide services to individuals or small businesses can be referred to as clients. International corporate conglomerates with multi-billion dollar companies could also be referred. The nature of the firm will determine whether the public accountant can move up to management roles within the company or in a team. Many public accounting jobs can lead to leadership roles within the firms.
Overview: Government accountants work in the context of federal, state and local government entities. Many times, they work in different frameworks than public accountants. They are often subject to more rigorous screening and may be required to keep confidential or privileged information secret.
There are many jobs available for government financial professionals. Auditing private documents or tax submissions might be one of their responsibilities. They may also manage resources or maintain financial records for government bodies or branches. OneWire Resources, an online resource for financial professionals warns that positions in government may not be as well-paid as similar positions in the private sector. Government positions can offer some perks and benefits that can offset lower earnings. Monster.com found that government jobs offer significantly better education, healthcare, retirement benefits, and insurance than many civilian jobs.
Overview: Forensic Accounting is a branch in accounting that gathers, recovers and reconstructs financial data when it’s difficult or impossible to get. Forensic accountants need to be able to understand accounting principles and practices and to solve complex problems. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), has a sample job listing for forensic accountants. It emphasizes the importance of communication, collaboration, and investigative skills. Potential employers will often be interested in candidates with previous coursework in law or similar experience.
There are many jobs available in forensic accounting. While some forensic accountants work for larger law firms, others work for legislative entities. Forensic accountants are also employed by government agencies such as the FBI and the IRS. Other forensic accounting professionals prefer being self-employed and working on a contract basis for companies, insurance companies and other private entities.
Accounting professionals can choose from many employment options and amenities that will best suit their career goals. There are many options, from fast-paced jobs that require frequent travel and can be very dynamic to more stable positions with fewer responsibilities. You might choose to work in a team-oriented position that requires a lot of interpersonal interaction or a data-oriented role that requires little personal contact.
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