A career in accountancy is a great choice and can offer you excellent job prospects. You could work your way right to the very top of an organisation with the right professional accountancy qualification. Accountants whose work is of a high standard can quickly progress to positions of responsibility. And accountancy roles often attract high salaries.
Gaining an accountancy qualification will stand you in good stead for the future as accountants are in demand in a variety of sectors and organisations.
You could work in business or finance, the public sector, the charity sector or public practice (those who work in public practice offer accountancy services to clients). You could choose to work for anyone from a large international accountancy firm to a small local business. And you can work in general practice or specialise in areas such as:
- auditing - conducting independent checks on organisations' financial statements
- tax – eg dealing with tax returns or advising organisations about tax
- corporate finance – advising businesses about mergers and acquisitions
- business recovery and insolvency – steering businesses through difficulties or winding them up
- forensic accounting – detecting and preventing fraud.
Accountancy and job satisfaction
Far from being all about number crunching, a career in accountancy will give you the opportunity to use a variety of skills including leadership, problem-solving, team-working and communication skills. In fact, many accountants report that much of their job satisfaction comes from their contact with people.
There are also opportunities to ‘put something back’ when working in accountancy roles. Environmental auditing is a growth area in accountancy. Enter this field and you will help businesses understand and reduce their impact on the environment. Many accountants choose to work in the public sector, so that they can play a part in ensuring local and national government and the health service achieve value for money. And if you choose to work in the private sector or public practice, your work could help bring about economic success for the business or businesses you work for.
Accountancy as a route to setting up your own business
If you would like to set up your own business, you might consider working in accountancy as a first step. Many accountants use their qualification to move into general management or setting up a company. If you work in audit, for example, you will have the opportunity to visit many companies each year. You will examine their financial strategies and ask about how they work, which will give you great insight into what makes a company successful.
Other benefits of a career in accountancy
Accountancy is also an excellent choice if achieving a work-life balance is important to you. Part-time roles and career breaks are possible. You will also have the opportunity to become self-employed and work at times that suit you.
And if you’re interested in travel, with a globally-recognised accountancy qualification, you could have opportunities to work internationally.
Still unsure? Why not talk to some qualified accountants in a range of sectors and positions and ask them what they enjoy about their roles?