Accounting

The Occupations

Accounting Clerk

Bookkeeper

Accounting Assistant

Audit Clerk

Payroll Clerk

Accounts Receivable Clerk

Accounting Payable Clerk

Accounting Supervisor/Office Manager

Financial Clerk

About the Occupations

An accounting degree is one of the most sought-after credentials today. In the corporate world, accounting is more than just processing numbers. Members of an accounting department are often expected to organize, analyze and interpret financial data for managers and executives, as well as participate in strategic planning and decision-making. The demand for accounting personnel thrives in both strong and weak economies.  During an economic downturn, companies may cut costs by reducing investments in management or marketing, but they still need to monitor cash flow and identify organizational inefficiencies.  Accounting personnel generally work in three areas: public accounting, business (profit or non-profit), and governmental entities. Employees in the accounting field may specialize in specific information areas such as Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable, Payroll, Billing, Costing or Budgeting. Those who assist Certified Public Accountants may also work with clients to acquire, record and prepare financial and/or tax information.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor (December 2015), the area of accounting is one of the occupations projected to experience significant growth, with a 3-11 percent growth rate expected through the year 2024. Due to the significant size of this occupational area, it is expected there will be many job opportunities available, including temporary, part-time and freelance work. Accounting is an excellent profession for those directly out of high school as well as those who are looking for new career opportunities or supplemental income. Graduates may find entry-level opportunities in small business, large corporations, professional associations, governmental agencies, and non-profit organizations. Some may also find entrepreneurial opportunities. With all of this in mind, consider the value an accounting certificate or degree from Navarro College would have for you.

An accounting certificate or degree from Navarro College can open new doors. Most bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks are required to have a high school degree and accounting training; however, some college, such as a certificate or associate degree, is preferred. Most entry-level accounting clerk positions can be obtained with a post high-school accounting certificate, while advancement opportunities and certifications may require a minimum of an associate degree. The Accounting Program at Navarro College offers a “Step approach”. Full-time students can receive an Accounting Marketable Skills or Clerk Certificate in as few as two semesters, allowing them to pursue an entry-level accounting position and/or continue their education. In as little as one additional semester, the full-time student can enhance his or her knowledge and skills with the Accounting Paraprofessional Certificate. This certificate also includes the opportunity for students to receive on-the-job training experience through a supervised practicum course. Both of these certificates lead into Navarro College’s A.A.S. in Accounting, which can be completed by the accounting paraprofessional graduate in as little as one additional semester. For those who wish to pursue a bachelor’s degree, such as a B.A.A.S., the A.A.S. in Accounting serves as an excellent foundation and allows students to pursue this as either a full-time or part-time student while working in the accounting field. National certifications, such as the Certified Professional Bookkeeper (CB) and Accredited Business Accountant (ABA) are available for individuals with work experience and accounting training, like that offered at Navarro College. For those who want to continue their education and pursue a bachelor’s degree (or higher), additional certifications, such as the Certified Management Accountant (CMA), the Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), the Enrolled Agent (EA) and the Certified Public Accountant (CAPA) are also available.

Work Environment

Employers:

Service companies

Retail stores

Wholesale and distribution companies

Industrial and manufacturing organizations

Federal, state, and local government agencies

Not-for-profit organizations

Typical Schedule:

Standard 40-hour work week with overtime during peak times

Tools and Equipment:

Computer systems

Accounting software such as general ledger packages

Spreadsheet, data base, presentation, and word processing application software

Internet access

Financial documents such as journals, ledgers, financial statements, and government forms

Worker Portrait

Skills and Aptitudes:

Organized, careful, accurate and neat

Good math skills

Dependable, punctual, and able to meet deadlines

Able to communicate well orally and in writing

Takes direction well, but can work with limited supervision

Problem solver

Interests

Enjoys helping people and providing a vital service to society

Enjoys high level of responsibility and maintains high ethical standards

Career Outlook

Outlook Occupation
Above Average Accounting Clerks & Supervisors , Accounting Supervisor
Position Salary per Year
Clerks/Bookkeepers $31,980 – $56,470
Office Mgr. $35,540 – $83,790

The median salary for an accounting clerk is $36,430. With experience and additional certifications one can become a full charge bookkeeper making up to $56,470 per year, or an accounting supervisor/manager, making more than $70,000 per year. (3) (Note: Individual earnings may vary based upon the job setting and position. These are ranges not guarantees of earnings.) Sources:

  1. Accreditation Council for Accountancy and Taxation, http://www.acatcredentials.org 
  2. American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers, http://www.aipb.org 
  3. State U.S. Dept. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Occupational Employment Elementary Statistical Methods, http://www.bls.gov
  4. Texas Workforce Commission: http://www.twc.state.tx.us
  5. Accounting has been ranked as the most sought-after college major by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). http://www.naceweb.org/