Becoming an accountant requires advanced education, formal certification and a firm commitment to joining the career. This article provides detailed information on who accountants are, what they do, education background, skills and job opportunities.
Who is an Accountant?
An Accountant is a professional trained in the management of financial records or accounts. These professionals are tasked with recording, verification, interpretation and analysis of financial information within businesses of all sizes.
Accountants are able to determine the financial stability of a certain organization in regards to their short-term or long-term goals.
What does an Accountant do?
Prepare accurate work papers, schedules, and reconciliations for audit purposes, Record payments and disbursements, Enforce payment terms with accounts, Prepare budgets, Enter transactions and reconcile account balances, Send invoices to accounts, Stay up to date on state and local tax laws and working with external auditors among other duties.
Steps of becoming an Accountant
- Education: To pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in a university, you will be required to score good grades in Mathematics, English, Business Studies and Computer studies with an average of C+ in KCSE. In case you do not qualify for a direct entry to university, you can pursue a Diploma in accounting and further your studies. You can also decide to take the CPA way. For this, you should have average of a C+ or a C- and study Accounting Technician Diploma. Afterwards you can enroll for a degree. Ensure you carefully evaluate whether the program and the course are accredited before enrolling.
- Certificate: To qualify as a professional accountant, you are expected to take CPA- Certified Public Accountant- course that will guarantee you a certificate to show your competence.
- Job Opportunities: Accountants work in state agencies, Private Sectors, manufacturing firms, accounting and audit firms, real estate companies, engineering, healthcare organizations among many more others. Entry level accountants receive a salary in the range Ksh 35,000 – 45,000.
- Group Association: Once you complete your CPA, you will be required to join an association of accountants referred to as ICPAK. In this association you will have the opportunity to network, get alerts of trainings, jobs, seminars and conferences.
Some of the most popular audit firms in Kenya that offer accounting related services include: KPMG, Deloitte, Ernst & the young, and Price water House Coopers