dcsimg

Twenty-First Century Accounting: Facts and Trends

Accounting
New accountants with a bachelor's accounting degree snagged all-time high starting salaries in 2005, pulling down an average of $44,564, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers. Why? Corporate accounting scandals have led to changes in accounting law, fueling an even greater need for this already in-demand profession. The changing landscape of accounting reveals other trends:

  1. A BS in Accounting isn't necessary to enter the field.

    An associate's degree in accounting is sufficient for a career as a paraprofessional accountant. With a junior college associate's degree in accounting or a diploma in accounting from a business school, the student with a two-year accounting degree can work for an accounting firm preparing corporate or individual tax returns, keeping payroll records, or auditing. A survey by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants shows that 96% of mid- to large-sized accounting firms rely on paraprofessionals with associate-accounting credentials. Part time and tax season positions for paraprofessional accountants are likely to continue their rapid growth.

  2. Bachelor degrees pay accounting dividends.

    Now that most states have adopted the U.S. Uniform Accountancy Act, which demands 150 hours of college education to take the CPA exam, fewer students go into accounting. Hence, the current shortages in qualified accountants. As a result, students with a BS in Accounting find themselves in a seller's job market where firms are offering not just record high salaries but perks as well. Students with a Bachelor of Business Administration-Accounting degree can specialize in a hot job field like taxation. With a BS in Accounting and computer training, the student can pursue technological accounting, developing accounting software or designing accounting systems.

  3. Solid salaries aren't the only perks of today's accounting positions.

    CNN reported that top accounting firm Ernst & Young sought to hire 4,500 accounting graduates in 2005, up 30 percent from the previous year. Other powerhouse firms continue to compete for graduates with bachelor's degrees in accounting. Because accountants are fielding multiple offers, accounting firms now offer hiring bonuses to supplement the career-high starting salaries, and benefit packages further sweeten the pot. To make sure young accountants spend quality time at their new jobs, corporations even provide concierge services to run errands.

  4. CPAs can increase their career-power by specializing.

    While the accounting profession is still basically divided into public accounting and auditing, cost or management accounting (keeping corporate financial records), internal auditing (checking for waste or fraud), and government accounting, some new accounting specializations have terrific career potential for CPAs. With some background in business administration, or better yet, a business degree, a CPA can work in assurance services, providing quality control and risk assessment to corporations. Post Enron, forensic accounting and fraud detection are in demand as never before. Environmental accounting has seen a boom, too, since corporation and utilities seek accounting professionals to do environmental compliance audits.

  5. Opportunities for experienced accountants now abound.

    The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, passed to correct the abuses of Enron and similar accounting scandals, has left a trail of opportunities for accountants with a few years of corporate auditing or public accounting under their belts. Salaries in the $70,000-$85,000 range are becoming common for corporate audit managers, pushed by an accounting shortage predicted to continue for at least another decade.


The high demand for accountants remains because the significant drop in accounting enrollments caused by the 30-unit hike in CPA credit requirements has yet to correct itself. Students setting out to get their bachelors degrees in accounting face bright prospects.

Sources:
"5 careers: Big demand, big pay," by Jeanne Sahadi. CNNMoney.com (Feb 6, 2006).
American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (aicpa.org)
Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook (bls.gov)
"Jobs: Accountants are kings among grads" (money.cnn.com).
"Staffing Issues for the New Millennium--The Emerging Role of the Accounting Paraprofessional," by Ted R. Compton. Ohio CPA Journal 59.3 (Jul-Sep 2000).

Pursue your Accounting Major today…

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Prefer exploring options talking to our staff?
            Call toll free now: 1.855.330.6938
            Matching School Ads
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Phoenix Career Services™ help students find careers that match their interests & map out a personalized career plan.
            • Mentorships & networking opportunities available through Alumni Association of 800,000+ graduates.
            • Flexible start date and class schedules.
            • Locations nationwide and online options.
            • Offers special military rates and special advisors who have a military background.
            • Students can earn credits for applicable military training and education.
            Good for Working Adults
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            5 Program(s) Found
            • 95% alumni satisfaction rate.
            • Currently holds more than 500 professional alliances, including 19 of the top Fortune 100 companies.
            • Courses are taught by expert faculty, with 86% of professors possessing a doctoral degree.
            • Offers credit for prior experience and learning, as well as scholarships, accelerated programs, and several other ways to help reduce tuition costs.
            • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Provides a 24/7 myCampusLink system that lets students access their records, e-mail, communicate with faculty, and more.
            • Designated a 2014 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
            • Educates with the mission to serve the needs of the local community and graduates by matching opportunities to skills.
            • Offers career education in nursing, dental, business, information technology, and more. 
            • Has 44 campus locations across 15 states, with online options as well.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            3 Program(s) Found
            • Among the top 15% of military-friendly colleges, universities, & trade schools in the nation. 
            • A Service Members Opportunities College.
            • Accepts employer tuition assistance. 
            • Recognized by The Princeton Review Guide to 311 Green Colleges as one of 311 institutions of higher education that demonstrates notable commitments to sustainability.  
            • Accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Inc. (NEASC).
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Offers more than 150 self-paced, career-relevant programs that are connected to a supportive 24/7 online community of students and faculty.
            • Profiled in many publications such as The Boston Globe, Fox Business, and  Inside Higher Ed.
            • Nearly 25,000 graduates each year.
            • Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).
            • Founded in 1890 in Scranton, Pennsylvania    
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Online school designated as a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
            • Commited more than $60 million in tuition savings in 2015 through scholarships.
            • Active-duty military, veterans, and Veteran’s Administration employees can save 15% on tuition.
            • Offers 24/7 student services, including financial aid help, course registration, and career counseling.
            • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            2 Program(s) Found

            You can advance your career with a degree from Charter College Online. We offer several Associates and Bachelors degrees in the business, health care, accounting and legal fields. Our accelerated programs are designed to help you complete your degree as quickly as possible. We offer year-round classes and flexible scheduling - study anytime from anywhere. We help students get not only with the technical skills necessary for success, but also job search and placement assistance so you can find new opportunities after graduation.

            • Online Courses