Introductory Accounting Careers
About the Accounting Field
Accountants and accounting clerks are responsible for generating totals and balances, reconciling bills, vouchers, accounts payable and receivable, and ensuring thorough, accurate data on customer and vendor accounts for businesses. They also need to discern company procedures for formatting documents, structuring financial data, and posting transactions in journals, databases or online systems. Some accounting positions review computer printouts against manually stored journals to manage and ensure quality, correct mistakes and remedy discrepancies.
There's a lot to get out of an accounting career with the most important perhaps being: learning how a business works. The field offers interesting and challenging work that is continually evolving.
Accounting Career Opportunities
Various accounting related occupations collected from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:
Accounting & Auditing Clerks
Accounting and auditing clerks are financial record keepers. They update and maintain accounting records, including those which calculate expenditures, receipts, accounts payable and receivable, and profit and loss. Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks held more than 2.1 million jobs in 2006 and are employed in every industry.
Payroll and Timekeeping Clerks
Payroll and timekeeping clerks perform a vital function: ensuring that employees are paid on time and that their paychecks are accurate. In addition, they may perform other clerical tasks. Automated timekeeping systems that allow employees to enter the number of hours they have worked directly into a computer have eliminated much of the data entry and review by timekeepers and have elevated the job of payroll clerks, allowing them to perform more complex tasks. Payroll and timekeeping clerks are found in every industry.
Billing & Posting Clerk
Billing and posting clerks calculate charges, develop bills, and prepare them to be mailed to customers. By reviewing purchasing records and making or verifying calculations, they ensure that even the most complicated bills are accurate. Billing clerks review hospital records, purchase orders, sales tickets, or charge slips to calculate the total amount due from a customer. About 35 percent of these workers are employed in the health care industry.