This essay will mark out the course of study of accounting and finance and formal assess the knowledge and skills that are needed for a future career path in financial accounting. Students that study accounting and finance often set goals to progress into accounting at a bank or at an accounting firm. So it will be advantageous for the students to understand the skills and knowledge to succeed in this area, as it will be essential to help the students in achieving their set goals. This essay identifies the skills that will be needed, so this essay will focus on accounting and finance and the essential skills needed as well as the ways in which these skills can be developed or improved.
The skills required to be a successful accountant are organisation, time management, adaptability, communication, openness and leadership. (Topan, 2014) Accountants should be experts with organisation; this is the key to succeed in this field. The comfort of the student is valued highly and is important to work within a structured environment. The student’s work can look similar and sometimes look repetitive so there are strict rules and regulations. Good time-management skills are needed to maintain and reach deadlines and complicated projects. Having the ability to organize and prioritize is essential. An Accountant’s work can be repetitive and involve strict rules and regulations so being organised will help reduce confusion with different clients information and results. (Dwilson, 2015)
Time management is very important to succeed in the accounting world, the better the student is with organising management the more efficient they will be, ‘so the more efficiently the student operates their schedule avoiding an excess amount of work.’ (Dominique, 2014)
Effective communication is important and vital in accounting because an accountant must discuss dealings that include employees, venders and clients. Accounting is an important part of any business, important communication skills are vital because important financial tasks such as budget preparation, reporting, bill paying, payroll and recording income need to be presented properly to management and others to be useful and meaningful. (Shanker, 2014)
Work places, companies and different types of approaches are always changing in the accounting world. Companies are often faces with candidates who are eager to find other job opportunities soon after being recruited by the company. The candidates always say this is because they say they cannot adapt to the company or they feel the internal management of the of this company is a mess, and therefore not suitable for their long-term development. However, in most cases, these kinds of “excuses” are not acceptable to recruiting consultants or recruiting companies. The candidate should carry out a basic SWOT analysis about the new job, and get mentally prepared for the potential challenges and risks, and be able to handle contingencies. After starting a new job, an employee should keep a positive attitude, instead of flinching when faced with problems or questioning their own choice.
Many people have adaptation problems to a work environment, either mentally or technically. It is important to address these problems and find appropriate solutions. In the period of adapting to a new position, we believe that effective communication is a key point in helping the new employee to resolve issues. If the issues are of a technical nature, the employee can develop by learning or asking their superiors or senior staff for help. In the process of communication, the employee should pay attention to what others have said, grasp the gist of it, and clearly express their own understanding. It takes some time for graduates to adapt to the work place. Usually companies will provide training or counseling. At the same time, job-hoppers will also encounter adaptation issues. It is only by adjusting one’s own attitude and gradually adapting to an environment that an employee can develop and progress. (Xu, 2013)
There are several ways to become organized; it is a time where technology can advance students. There are currently many applications on mobile devices to help organize a student’s week to help them with their career. From Google drive to Dropbox there are many applications to excel the process of sharing multiple reports thus saving students time. Instead of students wasting time looking at each individual receipt or invoice there are now systems that can read receipts and invoices and put everything in the right column. (Neat, 2015) Another way or staying organized is making a to do list. It is best for the student to make the to do list either at the start of their day or just when they get home. Students should put tasks in order of importance; they will continue to stay on top of their workload if they can reference a list. (Totaljobs, 2015)
Communication is very important to be good at in the accounting field; there are many jobs that can make the task of communicating with clients better for students. For clients, prospects and websites accounting professionals is more advantageous to possess an informative website and/or a direct email that is answered quickly. Website designers can help assist a good website at a meaningful cost. There are newsletters, which are client-based newsletters; there are services that provide content and articles in a customizable, document that is sent out to a client as a digital newsletter. This is perfect for students who have just started their accounting career and want to stay in contact with clients on a consistent basis. This is showing the client that they love high quality and love to communicate to keep the client up to date with every step. (Tenner, 2014)
In conclusion its vital to use new technology as an advantage to help the students with their new career and the most important skills are time management, organisation, communication and being able to adapt. Students need to research about their degrees and look at the key skills needed to succeed so they can start their career confidently. It is very important to know what is expected from their chosen career and be prepared.
Bob Tenner (2014) How to communicate with your clients: technology is your friend, Available at: http://www.accountingweb.com/article/how-communicate-your-clients-make-technology-your-friend/224087 (Accessed: 13th March 2015). Dominique (2014) Time management for accountants