Post-Grad: Accountancy Degree According to the U.S. government our economy is on the mend. But for many people, the improving economy has not filtered down to a personal level yet. One proven method to improve your personal economy is to play it smart when starting or switching careers. So where should you look for the best jobs? Which professions and occupations have the best salaries and job retention rates? According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, one job with the highest predicted employment growth, between 2011 and 2018, is Accountant. Accounting jobs are directly related to economic growth. Because the government has recently passed several new financial regulations, demand for accountants who understand the new laws has risen dramatically. This skyrocketing career can launch you into a much higher income level as well. In 2008 the average annual salary for new accountants was over $60,000, and according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the top 10% of accountants made over $100,000 each year – not including bonuses and other perks. Upwardly Mobile One other great reason to choose accounting over other careers is upward mobility. The rate of advancement from starting accountant to managerial positions, or even partnerships, is three times that of other career choices. Many online universities as well as almost all traditional universities offer advanced degrees in Accounting. This degree program appeals to people who have what it takes to finish the amount of school long required to earn an advanced degree. Accounting is for people who are detail-oriented, don’t mind taking their time to do things right, and have the determination to complete tasks. Accounting isn’t just for people who enjoy crunching numbers, either. The accounting field has changed greatly over the years and now many different fields and employers hire different types of accountants. Auditing All public companies are required by law to submit their annual reports for audit by an accredited Certified Public Accountant. “CPAs examine the financial records and assess the internal controls of a company to determine whether the financial reports are prepared using generally accepted accounting principles and to state an opinion as to whether the financial statements are presented fairly.” Education CPAs are in great demand within the teaching field. Certified accountants can teach undergraduate as well as graduate students in business and accounting. The teaching options available to a CPA are just as varied as their career choices — “accounting, audit, taxation, ethics, and business applications of information technology. CPA educators also publish, consult or act as expert witnesses”. Environmental Accounting Today many accountants are venturing outside the financial sector. Accountants also analyze environmental impacts of the billion-dollar real estate sector, the trillion-dollar oil and gas sector, and many other organizations that have environmental impact. “Environmental accounting is an opportunity to get into finance, while making a difference in a world facing various ecological threats.” Forensic Accounting Forensic accountancy is a relatively new field in the world of crime solving and prevention. These CPAs are in charge of uncovering fraud, gathering evidence, and putting together the facts of cases involving embezzlement and other types of financial crime. It might sound like the plot of a popular television crime show, but in reality it could be your job! International Accounting “In today’s global economy, CPAs with an understanding and mastery of international trade laws and regulations are in great demand.” IT Services The information technology sector has exploded recently with huge growth predictions. This fast growing field has created many opportunities for CPAs who have strong computer skills and are able to design and implement new advanced systems to fit a companies growing financial needs Nonprofit “Many CPAs make a rewarding career out of working for a cause that’s meaningful to them. Nonprofit groups don’t generate large budgets, so they need to maintain a strict financial balance. Whether a CPA works from within the organization or as an outside consultant, gratification can abound.” Public Accounting The most well known and traditional field in accounting is that of Public Accountant. This area of accounting fits the well-known description of helping small business and individuals understand and follow tax, accounting, and reporting laws. These accountants may perform: audits tax consultations financial planning specialized services “Move up the ranks at an accounting firm, start your own consulting company, or use your invaluable know-how to take the business world by storm.” These CPAs help individuals and companies with financial planning, investments, taxes, mergers and acquisitions, and much more. Showbiz Accounting “CPAs can have a glamorous niche providing financial services to Hollywood studios, production companies and music industry moguls. Some entertainment CPAs position themselves as business managers. They handle every aspect of their clients’ financial lives, from paying bills to advising on million-dollar contracts.” With all of these new fields available to those with an advanced degree in accounting, it’s no wonder the demand for CPAs has skyrocketed. This high demand translates into career stability, high salaries, and steady upward growth. Accounting Figures (Source: 2006 Robert Half Salary Guide) Does accounting sound like the right career for you? Start on your accounting degree today!