The number of accountants needed in the U.S. in the coming years is expected to grow 10 percent in 2016 through 2026. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that demand for accountants will grow faster than the average of all occupations in the coming decade. This expected increase in the number of open accounting positions leads many to wonder if they should pursue a career in accounting. Find out why a career in accounting may be worth a shot.
Flexible Study Arrangements
As early as the early 1970s, academic institutions had started offering distance programs that do not require students to be physically present in the lecture room. Accounting courses were naturally among the very first programs to be offered under this arrangement. Distance programs have revolutionized the way students study. They enable students to have flexible schedules. The fact that virtually all accounting study activities can be done online has enabled institutions to offer 100 percent online accounting programs. In fact, studying online has become the norm for undergraduate and postgraduate accounting programs.
Such online programs enable people with tight schedules to study accounting. This enables busy people who are considering a career change to study accounting. There are a number of online accounting courses accredited by professional, globally recognized accounting bodies such as ACCA. Of course, accounting courses, course qualifications, study centers and exam times vary according to the institution and the circumstances of the student. You can easily find an ACCA course online and enroll.
The Increasing Demand for Accountants
Historically, there has always been a demand for accountants since the industrial revolution. As long as businesses exist, it is safe to assume that there will be a need for accountants. Businesses will always need to keep financial records, file tax returns, audit their books and perform other accounting-related chores. Accounting is an indispensable part of any business regardless of whether it is big or small; there is a need for accountants even in times of economic recession.
That said, businesses tend to have a higher demand for accountants during periods of economic prosperity. The strong performance of the U.S. economy over the past couple of years coupled with the calls for increased government regulatory supervision of companies have increased the demand for accountants. The BLS has predicted an exponential increase in the demand for accountants in the next couple of years. This means that many people stand to reap big when they opt for a career in accounting.
Self-Employment and Accounting
In the course of doing their day-to-day jobs, accountants usually get access to information from the different departments in an organization. Accountants usually work in conjunction with departments ranging from procurement and sales and marketing to production, IT, and engineering.
In addition, some accounting roles enable accountants to network with business suppliers, customers, government regulatory officers and so forth. The knowledge accumulated by accountants from operations and networking gives accountants a unique perspective on the operation of businesses. This knowledge can come handy when the accountants want to start their own businesses and it might help them to get an edge when they start businesses.
A Rewarding and Satisfying Profession
Accountants rank as some of the most satisfied professionals in the U.S. A study done by the human capital consultancy firm, Hudson revealed that 78 percent of accountants and other workers in the financial industry felt “very” or “somewhat” satisfied with their jobs. This compares with a 72 percent satisfaction rate for the general survey population. This high rates for job satisfaction are likely, in part, due to the knowledge that accountants play a big responsibility in determining the fate of any organization. The general public, in turn, attaches a measure of prestige to the accounting profession. A combination of these factors likely contributes to feelings of satisfaction many accountants have about their jobs.
There is another important factor that contributes to these high job satisfaction figures. Accountants usually earn more than the average professional worker in America. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for accountants in 2018 was $70,500 per year or $33.98 per hour. Financial managers, many of whom are accountants, were ranked among 2018’s 25 highest paying jobs in America by the BLS.
Flexible Working Arrangements
It is not a secret that some accounting roles, especially in the financial services sector, involve putting in long hours every week. However, accounting is one of those careers that can enable people to achieve a reasonable balance between work and other life pursuits. There are a number of accounting roles that can be done remotely. Bookkeepers, payroll managers, tax filing experts and other accounting professionals can generally work remotely. In addition, many companies are increasing the proportion of accounting positions they offer to part-time employees. With good planning, enthusiasts of flexible working arrangements can get the kinds of jobs they desire when they choose a career in accounting.
Accountants can work in virtually any industry or sector of the economy. They are needed for roles ranging from bookkeeping, payroll management, auditing and financial analysis. Accountants are required in virtually any industry including finance, manufacturing, law firms, insurance and the government.
People who love traveling do not need to discount a career in accounting. In fact, choosing a career in accounting can open up a gateway to a life of travel. Some accounting positions, particularly with auditing services firms, may involve a measure of domestic and international travel. People who love traveling can have the best of both worlds–travelling the world while making some good money.
Accounting can be both a rewarding and challenging profession. There are many reasons why you should consider a career in accounting. The big demand for accountants, coupled with the ease of getting a reputable accounting qualification online, makes accounting an attractive career choice. In addition, accounting opens up the prospect of working remotely and rewards in terms of remuneration and job satisfaction.