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Is a Career In Bookkeeping or Related Field Right For You?

written: January 20, 2011

written by: Tina Benjamin

Bookkeeping along with related fields such as accounting and auditing clerks held around 2.1 million jobs in 2008* Bookkeepers are the financial record keepers of today's society.

Bookkeeping, Accounting and Auditing Clerks (Which we will call bookkeeping related fields)have a wide range of skills. They have ability to maintain a entire company's books. In this career, the individual make numerous computations each day via computer. Bookkeepers are responsible for many accounts known as a general ledger. They produce financial statements, create reports for managing employees, prepare bank deposits and post debits and credits. They may also handle payroll, create invoices and keep track of delinquent accounts.

Accounting clerks are more specialized and work in larger companies such as accounts payable clerks or accounts receivable clerks. Their responsibilities coincide with their job experience. Beginning accounting clerks may monitor loans, total accounts and compute interest. More experienced accounting clerks may reconcile billing vouchers and make sure that all accounts are accurate.

Auditing clerks will verify the records of transactions that are posted by other workers. Their job requires them to check the mathematical accuracy of figures, postings, and documents maintain that the documents are properly coded.

With the utilization of computers, most bookkeepers use special software, spreadsheets and databases to enter data. They work in an office environment and usually have a standard 40 hour work week. In tax time, end of fiscal year or if there is audit, bookkeepers may work overtime to meet deadlines.

The minimum education requirement for for this career by employers is a High School education. But having some sort of post secondary degree is important and required by many employers. Other qualifications may include, detail-oriented, careful, discreet, trustworthy and have good communication skills. They need to have the ability to recognize errors made by other people and avoid making them. Bookkeepers need to have a strong aptitude for numbers and have computer skills. Knowledge of accounting software is a plus.

It is beneficial to become certified. A certification for a bookkeeper (CB) is awarded by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers. There are several colleges and universities that offer a preparatory course for certification. Every three years, certified bookkeepers are required to meet a continuing education requirement to maintain certification.

Job growth is projected to be about as fast as the average. The large size of this occupation ensures plentiful job opportunities, as many bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks are expected to retire or transfer to other occupations. Also bookkeeping and related fields are projected to grow 10% between 2008-2018 This occupation is one of the largest growth occupations in the economy, with about 212,400 new jobs expected over the projections decade.*

With a growing economy coupled with more financial transactions as well as the need for accuracy and accountability, the demand for bookkeepers and related fields will increase. Job opportunities are expected to grow with the need to replace existing workers or workers retiring. Workers who have a wide range of skills in the bookkeeping and accounting areas will be in greater demand than specialized ones. Certified Bookkeepers and highly experienced bookkeepers will be in the best position for employ-ability.

If one of these exciting careers sounds like something you can see yourself doing in the future, do your research and find out about Bookkeeping and Accounting training.

*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition

Tags: Accounting/Financial

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