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Everything You Need to Know About Accounting Jobs

Research job roles, duties, and application tips for working in accounting.

If you’re looking for a great college or post-grad job, consider applying to be an accountant. You’ll need some foundational skills and understanding, so make sure to clean up your application before sending it off. If you’ve studied accounting or another related major in university, it should be a breeze putting together your application.

In your accounting role you’ll get to talk to industry professionals and get guidance from others all over and learn great interpersonal communication skills. It’s a great role to have on your resume while you figure out exactly where you want your career to go.

Before applying to an accounting role, make sure to reflect on the generic skills and schooling that will most likely be required of you; attention to detail, mathematical reasoning, communication, and a stellar resume

What is an accountant?

Accountants are in charge of organizing finances, balancing books, and assessing the financial health of their clients. It’s a great job to have if you want to get experience in finance and how to work best in that industry.

Some duties of accountants include:

  • Organizing and interpreting financial documents and information
  • Bookkeeping
  • Answering questions about projects or clients
  • Keeping clean and neat spreadsheets

What is the job outlook for accountants?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the role of accountant is supposed to grow about 6% from 2018 to 2028.

How much do accountants get paid?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly wage for accountants was $34.40 as of May 2019, but more depending on where you live. That’s about $71,550 per year.

Where can I work as an accountant?

On the list of employers hiring on Handshake, there are many companies hiring accountants:

  • EY LLP
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Microsoft
  • KPMG LLP
  • PayPal
  • Wells Fargo

Other places to apply for “accountant jobs near me” in your city include:

  • Local banks
  • Accounting firms
  • Startups

What should I put on my resume?

Many places hiring accountants are looking for similar attributes in resumes, but what makes the right candidate is listing the right skills you can offer.

List your past experiences 

Even if you’ve never held an accountant position before, you definitely have skills from past experiences you can offer. From volunteer work, internships, to university projects that you did–there are always skills you can pull from your life that apply. Those hiring accountants want to know that you know how to apply what you’ve learned to the role.

Consider listing some of these skills that might make you a better candidate:

  • Organization
  • Accountability for yourself and others
  • Punctuality
  • Thoughtful communication
  • Open to change and growth
  • Attention to detail

Technical skills

If this won’t be your first role as an accountant, then you may have some technical skills from previous jobs to add to your resume. It’s always a good idea to mention that you have mathematical skills, strong communication, know how to manage and please clients, or have had experience leading and working with others on large scale projects.

What should I write in my cover letter?

Though you might be applying for an entry level position, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t others trying to secure the same position as you. It’s important in your cover letter to stand out and really show what you can offer as an employee. Not only is it recommended that you list skills and experiences you’ve had, but also the willingness to learn and adapt to the role. By letting the hiring manager know that you’re motivated to get started, they might be more inclined to meet you in person and see if you’re the right fit. 

Check out this article with proper formatting techniques and more in depth information about the perfect cover letter. 

What are some essential accounting skills?

Some essential skills to have as an accountant:

  • Patience
  • Great communication skills
  • Knowledge of company policies and procedures
  • Teamwork
  • Reliability 

How to get an accounting job with no degree?

If you’re interested in working in accounting, but are without a degree:

  • Research certain qualifications and take a course or two to get some certifications under your belt
  • Explore your existing network and talk with connects in the accounting industry
  • Reach out to industry professionals that you look up to and schedule a chat with them about how they got to where they are today
  • Polish your resume
  • Write and edit a great cover letter

How hard is it to get into a Big 4 accounting firm?

All of the Big 4 accounting firms recruit and hire on Handshake! Employers like EY LLP and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) are always actively looking for Handshakers to message and hire. Take one of our Handshake student success stories for example.

With a complete Handshake profile and an active user presence, a Big 4 accounting job is closer than ever.

How do I get a work-from-home accounting job?

If you’re interested in a work-from-home accounting job, then make sure to search for accounting jobs with keywords like “virtual,” “remote,” or “work from home.” 

What are various types of accounting jobs?

  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Forensic Accountant
  • Government Accountant
  • Corporate Accountant

Where are the highest paying accountant jobs?

If you’re looking for accounting jobs with high salaries, consider using the job search filter feature for the following cities:

  • New York, NY
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Boston, MA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Washington, D.C.