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What can you do with an accounting degree in 2020

What is accounting?

Accounting involves looking after peoples money on paper; meticulously recording transactions and storing, sorting, reporting, analysing, and presenting the output to wide variety of stakeholders.

Reporting example of accounts include balance sheets, income statements, tax statements and profit and loss summaries.

Below are some of the other positions you can with an accounting degree.

Certified Public Accountant (US) or a Chartered Accountant (UK)

CPA or CAs are generally tasked with analysis, reporting, communication financial information in a company. They maybe set-up as an stand alone firm and have strong understanding of finance law.  

They also deal with preparation of financial records, assessing record accuracy, and ensuring that taxes are paid properly for both companies that they work for or their clients if they are an accounting firm.

Average salary for Certified Public Accountant in the US is $69,410 according to 2017 data.


An auditor is an individual or a firm named by an organization to execute a financial review. To go about as an auditor, an individual ought to be certified by the administrative/regulatory authorities of accounting and auditing.

An auditor needs prove they have skills in evaluating financial records or have certain predetermined qualifications. For the most part, to go about as an outside reviewer of an organization, an individual needs to have an authentication of training or a certificate from accounting regulatory bodies. In 2017, the median wage for auditors was at $69,350.

Investment Banker

Although the average Investment Banker salary in the United States is $244,626 as of January 20, 2020, it is a very competitive market to get into. You will need to prove to the managers and hiring partners that you have the skills and attitude to become an investment banker.

One of the ways people tend to get hired is through internships offered by banks. These allow both you and the bank to see if the job is a fit for your career. Internships lasts anywhere from a few weeks (during spring break) up to year.

Some banks keep a good chunk of the interns as permanent analysts. From there you can work your way up the ladder.

Accounting Manager

A mid to upper-level manager and accounting professional who directs staff and bookkeepers as well as accounting directors or trainee accountants. Some have obtained CPA – but others not always do, however they are often required to have a bachelors degree.

Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of a company

CFOs are normally given high financial responsibilities in a company regarding the organization’s funds, including budgetary, managing the company’s finances, financial planning, management of financial risks.

CFOs of large organizations generally have advanced qualifications, for example, a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Science Finance/Accounting. Some will CFA credentials or originate from a accounting background, for example, a Certified Public Accountant.

A chief financial officer (CFO) can earn up to $364,649, according to Salary.com.

How much does an accountant make?

Average Accounting Salary

According to Payscale, the average accounting salary in the United States is $51,011. Salary.com on the other hand report that a senior accountant can make an average yearly salary of $79,290 as of January 20, 2020.

Each reporting of course takes into account different sampling and reporting methods. They fit different purposes and each report will have a context behind the statistics.

To get a good understanding of you can really make is to look at job postings and talk to friends colleagues who are accountants.

The average salary figures aren’t always good indicators of what you will get, its more of what everyone, the seniors and the juniors, in the industry get paid.

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