Why I Chose to Be an Accountant: A Reflection
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Accounting is an information and measurement system that we use for the purpose of identifying, recording, measuring, and communicating relevant and reliable information about an entity to those with an interest in the entity. Accounting is a very challenging and rewarding career with a wide variety of career paths that one can venture in. Accounting is more of a communicating language in the world of business and as a result, the demand for accountants are constantly increasing, making accounting an extremely marketable career path. An accountant, like a majority of other jobs, has the ability to work as an independent accountant or work in a corporate atmosphere. I decided to make a career into the field of accounting in the corporate market, working for a firm and then a private company. My goal is to achieve a position of a CFO or venturing into my own business.
When I first heard about accounting I thought it was a generic degree that had only one specific work area inside of a business. However, after speaking to accountants and learning more about the career I learned of several opportunities that are available to an accountant with a Bachelor's degree. This can include auditing, bookkeeping, budget analyst, financial accounting, management accounting, tax, and much more. Inside each of these careers, accountants could also find a specific niche that they particularly like. For example, I spoke with a lady who works as a tax consultant but has never done a tax statement in her life because all she does is work with international markets for her company as it pertains to the budgeting for the tax aspect. Auditing is one of the most common areas that accountants have chosen to build their careers in. I believe in this era that we are in today, the work of an auditor is extremely important to ensure that the numbers reported by an entity are accurate and as a result, we, as citizens, are able to invest in companies accordingly. Also, having the ability to audit a company requires in-depth knowledge into the market, legal environment, and the entity.
Although I am interested in audit, I would like to start my career in tax. This is because taxation is an extremely important to a company and is extremely limited in regards to acceptance and turnover of employees. I believe to be a qualified tax accountant, an individual must have good knowledge of the necessary kind of government regulations and generally accepted accounting principles. As a tax accountant, I will be first be placed on a team in a tax department, where my duties can include reviewing files and company financial records, preparing ledgers, filling out tax forms, maintaining contact with tax agencies and holding meetings that are related to taxation and strategy (Admin, n.d.). My backup plan is to venture in becoming a forensic accountant with the FBI. I believe with my degree, as well as my military background in the U.S. Marines, I will be a qualified candidate. However, I don't believe in pursuing that as my primary career goal because the government funding is fickle as well as the pay, compared to the corporate market. Although tax in many firms, have a low acceptance rate and many companies require you to have at least 2-3 years' work experience in the field as well as at least a bachelor's degree, I believe I will excel when given the opportunity. This is because not only do I have a passion for it but I also excel in the quantitative areas. As far as the work experience that is required, I will be trying to go through an internship to full-time offer with one of the local firms in Miami, which doesn't require the work experience. With every accounting career field, you are required to work a lot of hours during "busy seasons". At times I have heard of accountants working up to 7 days a week for 13-14 hours a day.
I believe every qualified accountant expects a salary that is higher than or on par with other undergraduates from a number of business schools. Unfortunately, these expectations are rarely met in the current society. Currently the broad career field of "Accountants and Auditors" has an average hourly wage is $36.19 with an average annual salary of $75,280 (Labor, 2016).Â However, as an entry-level tax accountant, I can realistically expect to earn between $47,568-$59,269 (salary.com, n.d.). Quite a number of students have joined the big accounting firms that pay higher salaries but it's usually an average of around $50,000-$60,000. In other words, a lot of qualified accountants will be forced into sectors that don't pay as well. I believe in order to make the most in the beginning of my career, I should try not to fall victim to this lower market of accounts by realizing the dilemma and work and figure out ways to avoid it. One way I hope to avoid this is by completing my Masters in Accounting as well as my CPA. I also believe by doing programs like VITA and internships, will make me a key candidate that will be viewed as having the ability to succeed in any turmoil the company might face. The type of internships I will be looking to acquire internships that will give me experience with software solutions such as Inuit QuickBooks, Sage 50 Accounting, ATX Total Tax Office, CCH ProSystem fx TAX, Delphi Technology, and Oracle E-Business Suite Financial ls (Development, n.d.). Hopefully the internship I will be offered a full-time position in which I believe can help progress my career in one of the corporate offices because of a majority of their corporate promotion structure. I believe this will help mold me into an accountant that will be incredibly marketable in the corporate market.
In conclusion, I would say that accounting is the very diverse career path that will forever be in demand. As our world moves more towards global transactions I also believe that we accountants will be in more demand. This is because accountants are a necessity to determine how successful a business entity is, that can be detrimental in determining if a business segment can survive in a new international market, costs needed to allocating, etc. For a successful career in accounting, I should always look for opportunities to mold myself as a capable accountant as well as adapt the new technology advances and learn how to adapt to the changing government regulations and generally accepted accounting principles.
Admin, W. (n.d.). What does a Tax Accountant Do? Retrieved March 27, 2016, from http://www.topaccountingdegrees.org/: http://www.topaccountingdegrees.org/faq/what-does-a-tax-accountant-do/
Development, N. C. (n.d.). Accountants. Retrieved March 22, 2017, from My Next Move: https://www.mynextmove.org/profile/summary/13-2011.01
Labor, U. S. (2016, March 30). www.bls.gov. Retrieved March 22, 2017, from Bureau of Labor Statistics: https://www.mynextmove.org/profile/ext/oesmaps/13-2011.01
salary.com. (n.d.). Tax Accountant | Salaries. Retrieved from salary.com: http://www1.salary.com/Tax-Accountant-I-Salaries.html
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