Are you good with numbers and have strong analytical skills? Can you keep in mind many details while being a big picture thinker? If you’re thinking about building a career in business, an Accounting degree might be just right for you.
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What is Accounting?
Accounting has been referred to as the “Language of Business” and for good reason. Accounting involves the communication and interpretation of complex financial data that is easily understood by all parties.
As an accountant you will deal with a lot of data. You’ll have to collect, sort, store, analyze and present your findings in the understandable manner to the company management and offer solutions that will benefit the business. It’s a very practical skills to have.
Imagine having to budget what you spend as a college student - tuition fees, food, lodging, entertainment, social life, etc. You have to make sure that your expenses do not exceed your inflow of money.
Think you could do that?
Every business has to deal with hundreds of financial reports and endless lists full of numbers. An accountant would be the go-to person when it comes to any financial questions.
These are the kind of questions that accountant in the company might ask:
How effective are we spending money? How could we cut costs and increase our ROI (return on investment)? What can we do to optimize our cash flow? Becoming a professional accountant would involve analyzing financial reports/ number and translate all that data into usable information for decision making.
What Are the Fields of Accounting?
You will learn about these fields of accounting while pursuing your degree.
Financial Accounting - Tracking and analyzing day-to-day financial transactions with the help of standardized procedures. Presenting data in financial reports, including preparation for a company's public financial statements.
Management Accounting - Providing information about customer behaviours, costs of manufacturing, pricing policies, and budgeting. Management accountants focus on helping managers make the best financial decisions, providing them with detailed reports and forecasts for a company’s management.
Tax Accounting - Working with government tax policies and the Internal Revenue Code that regulates companies & individuals procedures when preparing tax returns. Commonly Tax Accounting is focused on limiting the tax obligation as much as possible.
Audit - Working with the inspection and evaluation of a company’s financial accounts. Auditing is an independent, objective examination that can identify financial mismanagement and how to improve it.
During your studies as an accounting major, you will be learning a lot from all of these specializations. So after graduation you will be prepared to choose the specific area to work in.
What Will You Study in an Accounting Degree?
You will be studying everything related to accounting, finance and business in general, some of which include:
- Financial Modelling
- Quantitative Modelling
- Finance and Investment
- Management accounting
- Economics (Microeconomics and Macroeconomics)
- Management Principles
Why Should You Study Accounting?
1. Get practical skill set in order to manage finances
Improve your critical thinking as well as become more detailed-oriented during your Accounting studies. You’ll get understanding on how to manage corporate and private finances better which will make you well prepared when dealing with future investments.
2. Broad career options
As an Accounting degree holder, you can choose your future specialization or move from one branch of accounting to another as you progress in your career. You might start in auditing, move to financial management and end up in management consulting.
After few years and a number of projects on your hand you’ll be able to start your own accounting firm as well.
3. Get countless possibilities to work in the business field
For a career in Accounting, be prepared to learn a lot. You have to grow and develop your professional skills every day to be able to improve systems within the business organization.
Due to the versatility and wide coverage of business subjects you learn when pursuing an Accounting degree, you’re never short of career options to choose from.
What Skills Do You Need to Study Accounting?
1. Fluency in English
You’ll be required to go through a ton of materials - books, articles, documents, research - in search of the answers you want, so having a good grasp of the English language would be very beneficial and helpful for you. Having strong ability to comprehend what you read is equally important too.
2. Good decision-making skills
As an Accountant, you’ll need to come up with proposed decisions based on evaluating costs versus benefits. While there are various methods to choose from, find a way that works for you, while adhering to strict conduct and guidelines.
3 Communication skills
While a lot of the skills required to be a good Accountant involves being a math junkie, you’ll also actually need to communicate well. That means having a strong ability to communicate clearly, accurately and effectively in a structured manner that helps in making more informed and better decisions.
Choose Your Future Career
With the accounting degree you can choose from a number of roles in the company, most common are:
- Budget Analyst
- Tax Consultant
- Financial Director
- Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
- Financial Controller
- Accounting Information Systems Auditor
- Forensic Accountant
- Investment Banker
- Tax Consultant