What is the field of accounting like?

Accounting is a fairly broad field, and job responsibilities vary greatly. For example, one accountant may be involved in the design and management of an entire accounting system for a business. In large firms, accountants often specialize in areas such as payroll, accounts receivable, accounts payable, cash, inventory, purchases or sales. In smaller firms it is common to have full-charge bookkeepers handling the entire accounting functions.

Accounting professionals are often thought of as number and ledger experts. However, math and analytical skills are only part of their job. Each day they may be called upon to communicate clearly with clients, co-workers, auditors and managers. These skills, along with their familiarity of the internal operations of the business, may lead to opportunities for advancement and promotion.

What qualifications are needed?

Accounting is a demanding course of study. It is also a demanding profession. Both require a high level of concentration and the ability to work with numbers and people. Accountants must be able to analyze and interpret information, have effective verbal and writing skills, and work independently as well as in a team environment.

What job opportunities are there in accounting?

The outlook for jobs in accounting is excellent. Nationally, a shortage of accountants is expected. Locally, the job market fluctuates somewhat with the Spokane economy.