Accounting YOUR DEGREE IN THE REAL WORLD 61,334 BACHELORS DEGREES CONFERRED IN ,793 BACHELOR DEGREE GRADUATES HIRED BY CPA FIRMS IN 2012

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1 YOUR DEGREE IN THE REAL WORLD Accounting CENTER FOR ONLINE LEARNING WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH A BACHELOR S DEGREE IN ACCOUNTING FROM SAINT LEO? The financial backbone of every business and organization, accounting is a field with endless possibilities, offering professional opportunities in a variety of industries and settings around the world from multinational corporations and big-name sport teams, to savvy tech startups, philanthropic organizations and federal agencies. It s no wonder. Accountants help pave the way to financial stability, performing a wide variety of tasks to keep a business or organization operating without hitches or delays. What is Accounting? Often called the language of business because it deals with interpreting and communicating information about a company s operations and finances Measures and describes economic events Ensures that financial records are accurate and taxes are paid properly and on time Links a company s past with its future, allowing executives to make informed business decisions MARKETABLE SKILLS THAT ACCOUNTING MAJORS HAVE: Critical thinking and problem-solving skills Math and communication skills Investigative and information-gathering skills Time management skills Organizational skills Analytical skills Research skills: methods including ability to analyze and evaluate information and statistics A BRIGHT FUTURE FOR ACCOUNTING MAJORS 61,334 BACHELORS DEGREES CONFERRED IN ,793 BACHELOR DEGREE GRADUATES HIRED BY CPA FIRMS IN ,700 NEW ACCOUNTING & AUDITING JOBS BETWEEN ACCOUNTING IS ONE OF THE FASTEST GROWING FIELDS IN THE U.S. TODAY ATTRIBUTES EMPLOYERS ARE LOOKING FOR: Analytical and Quantitative Skills Communication Skills Problem-Solving Skills Ability to Synthesize Computer and Technical Skills Organizational Skills Motivation, Initiative and Drive Decision-Making Ability Flexibility and Adaptability Interpersonal and Teamwork Skills

2 Public Accounting Public accountants typically work for a public accounting firm or have their own business. Public accountants provide a broad range of accounting, auditing, tax and consulting services. Their clients include corporations, governments, nonprofits and individuals. Many complete additional schooling and testing to become Certified Public Accountants (CPAs). Public accountants work with financial documents that clients are required by law to disclose, such as tax forms and balance sheet statements that corporations must provide to current and potential investors. External auditors review a client s financial statements and inform investors and authorities that the statements have been prepared and reported according to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). $46,500 to $58,750 Prepare, analyze and verify financial documents. Perform audits on business records. Design, operate and maintain accounting information systems. Work with law enforcement personnel and lawyers as part of a financial fraud investigation and appear as an expert witness at trial. Advise clients on the tax ramifications of expanding overseas. Determine the value of a business for sale. Areas In Which You Could Specialize Audit Tax Corporate Finance Corporate Governance Due Diligence Financial Advisory Forensic Accounting/Fraud Examination Bankruptcy and Restructuring Securities Fraud Contract Disputes Veterans Adviser

3 Corporate Accounting Corporate accountants, often called management accountants, work in public and private companies in every industry. Corporate accountants are typically employed in one of five areas: management, accounting, internal auditing, financial accounting, tax accounting, and information management and technology. Many complete additional schooling and testing to become Certified Management Accountants (CMAs). They provide a wide range of services to ensure an organization s financial security and help drive overall strategy. These services include handling financial records, managing clients, preparing for audits, budgeting, payroll, financial planning and preparing annual reports for shareholders. $38,500 to 49,250 Corporate accountants focus on users inside the company. The information they prepare is not intended for use by the general public. Record and analyze financial information. Establish internal controls. Develop budgets and evaluate performance. Determine the cost of doing business. Work with financial managers to secure and manage assets. Determine salary and compensation packages. Assist in the development of a strategic plan. Top Industries for Corporate Accountants Information Technology Healthcare Life Sciences High-end Manufacturing Financial Services Retail Energy Become a company s controller or chief financial officer (CFO).

4 Government Accounting Government accountants work at federal, state and local government agencies, law enforcement agencies, and in the governmental accounting departments of public accounting firms. Government accountants maintain and examine the records of government agencies and audit private businesses and individuals whose activities are subject to government regulations or taxation. They are employed by federal, state and local governments to ensure that revenues are received and spent in accordance with laws and regulations. At the federal level, government accountants manage public funds, investigate white-collar crime, perform financial statement audits for government agencies, and conduct research on emerging accounting issues. $56,020 State government accountant At the state and local level, government accountants manage use of local revenues, investigate fraud, perform performance audits and recommend corrective action where needed. Perform financial, performance and compliance audits. Develop internal controls. Prepare budgets and evaluate performance. Work with law enforcement to investigate white-collar crimes. Manage local revenues. Work as an IRS auditor. Testify before legislative committees on audits or tax legislation. Possible Employers General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Bureau of Investigation U.S. Department of the Treasury Internal Revenue Service U.S. Government Accountability Office State Department of Revenue State Public University System City Police Department Local Utilities Board

5 Nonprofit Accounting Nonprofit accountants work at churches, foundations and other nonprofit and charitable organizations as well as in the nonprofit accounting department of public accounting firms. A good accountant can make a huge difference for a nonprofit or charitable organization. While nonprofits are not out to make a profit, they do need money to fund programs and pay for operational expenses. Nonprofit accountants manage an organization s budgets, help raise funds and prove to donors that money is being well spent. While similar to accounting at a for-profit or government organization, nonprofit accounting has important differences, such as navigating the not-for-profit tax code and budgeting and accounting for funding from donations and grants. Nonprofit accountants ensure that funds from contributions, membership dues, program revenues, fundraising events, public and private grants and investments are appropriately accounted for and adequate to effectively carry out the mission of the organization. $44,601 to $87,37 Nonprofit accounting director with a bachelor s degree Perform financial, performance and compliance audits. Develop internal controls. Oversee budgets and financial transactions. Manage and account for charitable donations. Establish a foundation. Manage the distribution of funds following a natural disaster. Become an organization s controller or chief financial officer (CFO). Possible Employers Hospital Social Welfare Organization Private School or Public University Disaster Relief Agency Community Development Agency Foundation Political Party Youth Organization Chamber of Commerce

6 online.saintleo.edu Undergraduate Graduate Sources: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics: ONet Online: Robert Half 2013 Salary Guide What Does a Corporate Accountant Do? WiseGeek What Does a Public Accountant Do? Education Portal Nonprofit Accounting, Accounting Coach American Institute of Certified Public Accountants: Institute of Management Accounting: American Accounting Association: National Association of Nonprofit Accountants & Consultants: What you need for where you re going

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