Five Careers for Accounting Majors

If you’re an accounting major, or thinking about majoring in accounting, you probably want to know what career options are available to you. Fortunately, it’s a flexible enough major for you to gain entry into most industries.

This list provides five career options for accounting majors that aren’t doing other people’s taxes.

 

 

Financial Managers ($127,990 per year)

As a financial manager, the financial health of an entire organization will rest on your shoulders. You’ll be responsible for making sure that key players of the organization have a solid picture of the company’s finances.

You’ll prepare financial statements, supervise other employees on your team, determine ways to reduce company costs, analyze market trends, and guide management in financial decisions.

Tech has changed this job for the better, which means you’ll spend more time figuring out how to maximize profits instead of changing the borders and color of financial reports.

You can specialize as a:

  • Controller
  • Treasurer
  • Credit manager
  • Cash manager
  • Risk manager
  • Insurance manager

While all you need to snag this job is a bachelor’s degree, this is not an entry-level position. You’ll also need at least five years or more experience in the finance world.

This job comes with full-time hours, although some overtime might happen during busy periods and impending deadlines.

 

 

Personal Financial Advisors ($88,890 per year)

If you want to focus on the individual instead of the corporation, this job might be for you.

As a personal financial advisor, you’ll meet with client to talk about their financial goals, explain the financial services you offer, recommend potential investments, and help clients plan for things like education or retirement.

You’ll be qualified to offer advice on a broad set of topics, although some people choose to specialize in a specific one.

With this job, expect to work in an office. You’ll work full-time, but sometimes you’ll have meetings on weekends or in the evenings based on the needs of your clients.

All you need for this job is a bachelor’s degree, although a master’s degree and special certifications can help you move up the career ladder.

 

 

Financial Analysts ($85,660 per year)

As a financial analyst, your focus is on investments. You will pour over current and historical financial data, recommend investments to your clients, study emerging economic trends, and prepare written reports on everything you find.

You can specialize as a:

  • Portfolio manager,
  • Fund manager
  • Ratings analyst
  • Risk analyst

Popular employers for financial analysts include banks, pension funds, mutual funds, securities firms, and insurance companies.

A lot of these companies are based in NYC, so you might choose this career if you want live in a big city. But, if you’re looking for a 9-5, be careful. Most of the analyses you’re responsible for must be done after hours because your day will be filled with phone calls and meetings.

 

 

Budget Analysts ($76,220 per year)

Budget analysts help companies and institutions organize their money. Key duties include projecting future costs, reviewing managers’ budgets, and informing clients on the status and availability of funds.

A big part of the job is also combining smaller departmental budgets into one large institutional budget. Most budget analysts work for the federal government, although quite a few also work for educational institutions.

Expect to work in an office but be prepared to travel to client sites. You’ll be expected to work 40 hours a week, but the pressure to meet deadlines is known to be stressful, and that might lead to working overtime or extra hours.

 

 

Accountants and Auditors ($70,500 per year)

Working as an accountant or an auditor sounds simple, but when you go deeper into the job description, it’s more complex than it sounds.

You’ll be tasked with preparing and examining financial records, as well as making sure documents are accurate and taxes are paid on time. Surprisingly, this job could be good for those who enjoy public speaking, as you’ll frequently have to explain your findings to managers and clients.

Most accountants specialize by area of expertise or by industry, and common tracks for specialization include:

  • Public accountant
  • Management accountant
  • Government accountant
  • Internal auditor
  • External auditor
  • Informational technology auditor

A lot of your work will probably occur alone in an office, but you’ll have the occasional opportunity to work on teams. While you’ll usually work a 40-hour week, you should be prepared to clock in more hours during busy periods like tax season or the end of the budget year.

 

Now you have a solid list of potential careers with an accounting major, and you can use this list as a starting point to explore further. As a wise man said, “The only two things guaranteed in life are death and taxes.” If you know your way around numbers and finances, you’ll always find employment.

 

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This post was written by Arlena McClenton, a senior at Barnard College studying comparative literature and web development. In her free time, she can be found drinking tea, scoping out the best campus study spaces, and exploring the city.

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