Some accountant have so many clients and make a lot money, and so, people always ask how to become an accountant. Most people need an account at least for preparing their annual tax. You can consider to become an accountant if you are happy with an income that helps you to make a living. So here is a step wise understanding of how to become an accountant.
The financial field throws up many opportunities for an individual. If you like dabbling in numbers and if the jingle of money makes you excited, an accountant’s job can be a great professional option for you. While the academic route to how to become an accountant is fairly straightforward, it is important to take cognizance of the fact that mere degree will take you nowhere.
You must understand that an accountant is not just a money matters wizard but also extremely alert, efficient bookkeeper with an eye for all types of detail that goes into making accountancy such a tricky art form.
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Educational Qualifications to Become an Accountant
Well, quite naturally the first factor that you must pay attention to is the educational qualification that you need for being a successful accountant. So once you graduate from high school and get your GED, it helps to put additional focus on Mathematics and other business related courses. Not only would that help in getting you a more secure foundation in accountancy but also open up the prospect of getting the opportunity of pursuing the course from better rated institutes.
To increase your overall exposure in your pursuit of how to become an accountant, you could also consider joining a business or accounting club in your school. This will not just enhance your experience base but also additionally help you to gain more exposure in this field and related topics.
The next step after high school degree is no doubt ways to get a bachelor’s degree in accounting and other related subjects like business administration or even business management. Each state across the United States have their own set of rules and norms with regards to the required credit hours that a student needs for having a degree in accounting and it is best to confirm to those.
Therefore, keeping in mind the various ramifications of a high degree, it surely helps to speak to an educational counselor on the different aspects of a degree in accounting and make an informed choice. This will not just help you in knowing how to become an accountant but also help you in becoming a successful accountant.
The next course of action is how do you plan to enhance your degree because a mere bachelors in accountancy will take you nowhere. Let assume if you plan to be a CPA or a Certified Public Accountant, most states across the United States would need you to complete 150 hours of college coursework. As you can well calculate, this is on an average 30 hours more than the time required for the bachelor’s program in accountancy.
Some schools also give the option to students to pursue a 5-years accountancy course that enables them to pass out with a bachelor’s as well as a masters degree in accountancy and pave the road for a shorter journey towards a more promising future as an accountant.
However, in case you are not enrolled in a 5-year course, you also have the option to take up additional courses in your college and university to get those additional credit hours that you need to be eligible for the CPA exam. Given the value and the career boost that passing the CPA exam enables, many employers also sponsor their staff’s CPA exam preparation including completion of these additional credit hours. Academically the CPA exam directly paves the road for a profession as a Public Accountant. Not only is this option hugely stable but also helps you gain great experience.
Once you gather the professional knowhow, the next step is obviously about gaining practical experience, and there is no better way to do it than going through internship with a firm. This type of an internship program helps you work in an actual accountancy firm and often offer college credits for the best outcome.
Once students do not have to simultaneously worry about college credits, they are more diligent in their work as an intern. They get an opportunity to familiarize with the real challenges of the profession as well as gain more expertise in the theoretical knowledge that they are acquiring in college. The internship program is extremely flexible and forms a key part of the training schedule.
1) They are broadly of two different durations to help the student with their school work. Either it is part-time when the school is underway or full-time during vacations like summer break. It can also be a combination of both depending on the number f credit hours that the student might be earning from them.
2) The internship program is not just a great opportunity to gain practical training but also helps a student in establishing connections and networking platforms that would reap benefit going forward in their career.
As you work on the various aspects of how to become an accountant, one key consideration would surely be the salary outlook. As per the data collected from the US Labor Department and surveys by website like payscale, the accountant’s average wage is close $62,000 as per the 2011 median data. That said the top 10% of the accountants are very handsomely paid and often earn annual salaries well over $100,000.
This is particularly true for those who have significantly higher qualifications, certifications and have passed the CPA. The salary outlook given the prospect of job creation seen upto 2020 is estimated to rise by a minimum of 10%. That surely is good news for aspiring accountants.
It is also important to consider paying attention to certain skill sets that you must master. You have to develop a high level of concentration, have an eye for details and pay attention to minor changes. You must be alert and vigilant and ready to put in long hours depending on the demands of the job.
Therefore, all in all, we can safely conclude that if you are interested in knowing how to become an accountant.