What Does a Day in the Life of an Auditor Look Like?

From learning about new industries to traveling around the country, auditors enjoy a lot of variety in their day-to-day work. If you’re thinking of becoming an auditor, you might be wondering what a day in the life looks like: Is it mostly travel and meetings with financial executives, or do auditors mainly spend their time assessing a company’s financial reporting risks? To find out the answer, we asked the team at the CAQ (Center for Audit Quality) to share some insights into the key parts of the job.

What we discovered is that the tasks may vary from one day to the next. In fact, no two days are quite alike in the auditing field. Most auditors do a combination of the following things:

1. Team with peers to establish a game plan

While audit testing can be done autonomously, many auditors tend to work closely in teams so that they can cover as much ground as possible and check each other’s work. This work requires professional skepticism, objectivity, and good communication. Many auditors say this is the reason they enjoy their work so much. Rather than sitting behind a desk all day, they are working with their peers as a team to provide accurate financial information to investors and build trust in capital markets.

2. Meet with financial executives

Meeting with financial executives and assessing their needs is often the next step toward establishing a relationship. Once that relationship has been established, ongoing meetings allow auditors to understand how the companies they audit operate and get updates on important financial developments. In return, auditors assess financial reporting risks and develop audit strategies to mitigate those risks. The work of the auditors helps to build confidence in the financial information presented by companies.

3. Research a company’s financial history

In addition to meetings with financial executives, auditors spend a significant amount of time researching companies’ industries and learning about their prior audit history. For example, when working with a company in the tech industry, auditors are responsible for understanding current financial trends and knowing how the company they are auditing fits into the broader landscape of the industry. Prior to starting the audit process, auditors must also get a sense of how the company has performed in previous years to understand the financial challenges it has faced. In order to gain this knowledge, auditors will typically review public audit records from previous years (how many depends on how long the company has been in business) and make note of any red flags that come up.

4. Conduct site visits

Visiting the physical location of the company is another key part of an auditor’s job and usually one of the reasons why auditors travel so frequently. These site visits can be carried out for general meetings or as part of inventory observations required during the audit process. According to the CAQ, the visits can vary widely depending on the company that you are auditing. For example, they can include touring lab facilities for pharmaceutical companies or visiting warehouses owned by retailers.

5. Assess financial reporting risk

The final and most important part of an auditor’s job is assessing the risk of misstatement in the company’s financial statements. This includes evaluating and documenting their risk assessment of the company based upon meetings, research, and site visits. Auditors will then develop audit procedures to address those risks.

According to auditors interviewed by the CAQ, the profession offers two important things: variety and work-life balance. “One thing I love about public accounting is that each week is different,” explains Ben, an auditor from Chicago, who spoke to the CAQ about why he chose to become an auditor.

A diverse but stable career path, auditing offers a lot of opportunities for continued learning and growth with enough flexibility to develop a schedule that works for you.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as 6 Things to Do in Your First Week at a New Job and find answers to common interview questions such as What’s Your Dream Job?

Top 5 Misconceptions About Being an Auditor

An exciting and growth-oriented career, auditing offers recent grads an opportunity to learn about new industries like media and tech while also developing their knowledge of accounting and business operations. Despite the fact that it’s a stable career with high earning potential, there are some common misconceptions about auditing that seem to keep popping up. To set the record straight, we sat down with the team at the CAQ (Center for Audit Quality) to find out what it’s really like to be an auditor.

Here are the top five misconceptions about being an auditor.

1. Auditing isn’t a very exciting career path

If you’ve ever heard a joke about accounting or auditing, you know that the punchline is almost always about it being a boring profession. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, being an auditor gives you exposure to a diverse range of industries and companies, meaning you’ll always be learning about new business trends and meeting with leaders in almost every industry – all while working in a collaborative team environment made up mostly of your peers who often become your friends and colleagues for life.

Added bonus: According to the CAQ, auditors who work for public accounting firms get to work on a variety of cool projects including counting votes for popular award shows like the Oscars and the Grammys.

2. Auditors spend most of their time crunching numbers

Another common misconception about auditing is that it’s mostly about analyzing financial statements. Although this is definitely a part of an auditor’s job, it’s not the only part. Auditors also spend time meeting with company executives, conducting site visits, and learning about the company’s particular industries. This background knowledge helps auditors understand how the company they are auditing carries out their day-to-day business activities and makes auditing a well-rounded profession that is about much more than number crunching. Auditing also requires a questioning-mindset, objectivity, and judgment skills.

3. Auditing is mostly a desk job

The idea that auditing is mostly a desk job goes hand-in-hand with the notion that auditors spend most of their time working alone analyzing financial statements. In reality, the opposite is true. Because auditors attend frequent client meetings, they often travel to company sites all over the country (and sometimes the world). And because some auditing work can be done autonomously, auditors are also able to work remotely. “One great thing about this job is that my desk is in my backpack. I can basically set up wherever I want,” explains Jesse, an auditor from Atlanta who spoke with the CAQ about his decision to go into auditing.

4. You need a CPA license to be an auditor

One of the biggest misconceptions about being an auditor is that you need to pass the CPA exam before you can get started. In fact, many auditors are not CPAs, and having your CPA license is not a requirement for the first several years at the job. However, the experts at the CAQ recommend taking the exam for two reasons: 1) It will increase your earning potential, and 2) It will help you stand out from the crowd when it comes to finding new opportunities.

5. Auditors do not have a lot of work-life flexibility

The final misconception about auditing is that employees do not have work-life flexibility. While there may be less flexibility for some auditors during busy season (when companies are filing their annual financial statements or 10Ks), for the most part, auditing offers a lot of flexibility and a well-balanced schedule. “Auditors work hard but we also have a pretty good work-life balance,” says Ashley, an auditor from Miami who refers to that balance as one of the key benefits of the job.

Although auditing is sometimes jokingly described as a not-so-exciting career involving a lot of long hours, the truth is that it offers both variety and opportunities for continued development. By knowing what to expect, you’ll have a clear understanding of your potential career path and you’ll be able to decide whether auditing is right for you.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as How to Be a Team Player and find answers to common interview questions such as What’s Your Dream Job?

Top 4 Tips for Landing an Auditing Job

If you’re interested in auditing and considering becoming an auditor, you might be wondering what you can do to land a great auditing job. Should you intern at a big accounting firm? Take classes on financial regulation? Or is it more about knowing what to expect and being able to plan your career path accordingly? To find out the answer, we recently spoke with the team at the CAQ (Center for Audit Quality) to find out what steps you can take to find a job that fits your skills and lifestyle.

Here are the top four tips for landing an auditing job.

1. Take relevant classes during your time in college

Since auditing requires an understanding of financial regulations and accounting principles, developing this knowledge as an undergraduate will get you one step closer to finding the right job. The best way to do this is by taking business and accounting classes as part of your major and using these classes to establish a solid knowledge base. At the same time, you can develop your skills by taking specialized electives such as data analytics, business ethics and accounting information systems.

Pro Tip: If you want to really stand out from the crowd, supplementing your knowledge by learning about auditing through sources such as the CAQ’s Discover Audit initiative is a great way to do so.

2. Intern with an accounting firm while in college

If you’re not sure about what auditing career path to choose (or even if you are but want to build your skills and experience), a great way to gain exposure to the profession is by doing an internship with an accounting firm during your sophomore of junior year of college. This will give you hands-on experience while teaching you the type of skills you’ll need to succeed in the profession. As an added bonus, you’ll expand your professional network and will likely open yourself up to new job opportunities after the internship is over. Plus, many public accounting firms hire directly from their intern pools.

3. Start networking

It’s never to early to start networking and the best place to do so is right on your campus. This is because audit professionals from large accounting firms often spend time on college campuses networking with current students. In order to make the most of these opportunities, take advantage of the chance to meet these professionals and hear from them about their experiences. As an added bonus, these might be the same professionals you’ll get to work with someday if you decide that a career in auditing is for you.

4. Study for the CPA exam

Although a Certified Public Accounting (CPA) license is not required in order to start your career as an auditor, many firms — especially large public accounting firms — require their employees to obtain their CPA license early in their career. According to the CAQ, even if your particular firm doesn’t require a CPA license, passing the exam is a way to expand your career options and to get recognized in the field. It will also increase your earning potential throughout your career.

By following these tips and knowing how to position yourself as a competitive candidate, you’ll be setting yourself up for success and getting one step closer to landing a great auditing job.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as 6 Things to Do in Your First Week at a New Job and find answers to common interview questions such as What’s Your Dream Job?

How to Write a Resume: The Basics

Whether you’re searching for an internship or an entry-level position, the first step to finding a great job is having a strong resume. How can you ensure that your resume is both effective and professional? By highlighting relevant skills and experience while also showing that you’re a well-rounded individual who can bring something unique to the role.

We recently sat down with an expert on the recruiting team at a major accounting firm to get their advice on resume best practices.

Here are three quick tips to help you create the perfect resume.

1. Map it out. It should always be just a single page. 

Before you start writing your resume, map out key points such as your work experience, skills and academic background. This is a great exercise for two reasons: 1) It will help you take stock of the information that’s most relevant to the roles you’re applying for and 2) It will give you a sense of how to structure your resume without going over a single page (the commonsense limit for any resume).

The best way to map out your resume is by creating separate sections for education, skills and experience and then noting down 3-5 bullet points under each one. Once you have your bullet points, take a few minutes to assess which ones are most impactful and be sure to include these in the final version.

2. Create a structure for your resume and fill in the categories.

Next, it’s time to create a structure for your resume and to flesh out each section. For most college students and recent grads, a chronological resume is the best way to go since this is the most common type of resume used by professionals.

Here’s what it looks like:

Contact information

This should be the first section of your resume and it should feature your name, address, email and phone number, as well as links to a personal website or an online portfolio if you have them.


This section should have the name and location of your college or university, as well as your major and the anticipated date of your graduation. You may also choose to include your GPA (if it’s above 3.0) and to highlight relevant classes or extracurricular activities.


The third section of your resume should be dedicated to your previous work experience including part-time jobs, internships and volunteer work. Although you should include work experience that relates to the role you’re applying for, don’t feel compelled to write down every single job you’ve had in the past. Instead, focus on the ones where you developed your core set of skills and highlight your experience by adding 3-5 bullet points detailing your responsibilities in each position.

This order isn’t the only way to do it. Here’s another example of a great resume with a slightly different ordering of sections. can also see another example of a great resume with a slightly different order.

Pro Tip: Whenever possible, use action verbs and numbers to illustrate the impact you had in each role. For example, if you helped a company grow its social media presence during a marketing internship, be sure to mention this and to note the growth rate as a percentage.

Skills and Interests

Since employers are interested in hiring well-rounded candidates, one of the other key areas they look for is a section on skills and interests. This should include a range of skills such as proficiency with computer programs like Microsoft Word and Excel and language skills (if relevant to the position you’re applying for). When outlining your interests, be sure to focus on those that relate to your chosen career path such as an interest in travel if you’re applying for a role where travel is required.

3. Highlight your accomplishments.

If you don’t have a lot of professional experience, that’s okay too. You can still demonstrate the value you’ll bring to a position by highlighting your academic and personal accomplishments. A few key areas to focus on are class projects you’ve worked on, volunteer work you’ve done and any awards you’ve won (such as making the Dean’s List or receiving a scholarship). Pepper these accomplishments throughout your resume and use them to fill any gaps in your experience or education.

By following these tips and crafting a resume designed to show off your personal and professional accomplishments, you’ll be sure to impress potential employers and to get one step closer to landing your dream job.

What Is Human Resources Management?

With a projected growth rate of nine percent by 2024, human resources management is a rapidly growing field that offers candidates a variety of career opportunities from recruiting to people operations. If you’re considering becoming a human resources professional, you might be wondering about the various day-to-day tasks associated with this career path.

Here are some of the key things you need to know about working in human resources management.

What is human resources management?

Human resources management (often abbreviated as HR management or HR) is a broad term that covers a range of functions associated with hiring, training and managing employees. Focusing on everything from recruitment to payroll, HR departments ensure that companies follow federal laws and best practices when managing their employees, a practice that not only benefits the employees but also the company’s ability to operate efficiently.

What do human resources professionals do?

Because human resources management is a broad field, the day-to-day tasks of HR professionals can vary greatly depending on their roles. For example, while recruiters focus mostly on identifying talent and interviewing candidates, HR generalists are responsible for creating and streamlining processes to handle things like payroll, benefits and training. Despite the different responsibilities of these roles, one thing remains constant: a strong focus on effective employer-employee relations.

What are the challenges of a human resources management career?

A fast-paced field, HR management definitely has its share of challenges. These include contending with unpredictable schedules when organizing interviews and handling sensitive issues such as layoffs and problems between managers and employees. The key to overcoming these challenges is understanding that HR management is a service-oriented role and keeping the company’s best interests in mind while being sensitive to the needs of employees.

What are the benefits of a human resources management career?

Although there are definitely some challenges involved in being an HR professional, there are a lot of benefits too. These include working with managers to build a strong workforce, fostering a great team culture and developing programs designed to ensure that employees are satisfied and supported in their roles.

What is a typical salary for a human resources professional?

Salaries for human resources professionals vary slightly depending on the specific role but entry-level HR coordinators and recruiters typically earn around $42,000 while HR managers can earn upwards of $90,000.

An important field with plenty of growth and stability, human resources management offers many opportunities for recent grads. The best way to find out if being an HR professional is right for you is to get a hands-on feel for the role by doing an internship.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as Top 10 Things You Should Look For In a Company and find answers to common interview questions such as What’s Your Dream Job?

What is a Finance Major and is it Right for Me?

Are you intrigued by the mathematics or statistics courses that you’ve taken in the past? Do you feel like you solve problems in creative ways, with a numbers-driven approach? Would you be interested in helping companies plan for how to grow their revenue or maintain profitability in both the short and long term? If so, a finance major might just be for you.

What is a finance major?

Financial planning, investment decisions and analyzing/limiting expenses are all various aspects of what you can and will learn as a finance major. As a finance major, you will study how companies have performed in the past to predict how they will perform in the future, and learn how to communicate information that will drive strategic changes. Many of your assignments will be project driven, whether they be individual case studies to enhance your problem-solving ability, or group presentations to practice the way you interact with others. Typical classes in this major include accounting, economics, math and psychology.

Is it right for me?

Finance is an exciting major with plenty of career opportunities. Contrary to popular belief, it’s also a major that requires both analytical skills and a healthy dose of creativity. Above all, it will help you develop multiple skill sets at once, offering you a great chance of success in several industries after graduation.

Here are some questions to ask yourself when deciding if a finance major is right for you:

  • Am I interested in math and statistics?
  • Am I a creative problem-solver who is able to overcome challenges by coming up with innovative solutions?
  • Am I interested in figuring out how to help companies increase their revenue?
  • Am I a good communicator who is able to express my ideas clearly and effectively?

If you responded “Yes” to all of the above, then being a finance major might just be for you.

What can I do with a finance degree?

Finance as an area of study is fairly broad and offers plenty of career options. These include:

  • Investment banking
  • Management consulting
  • Investment management
  • Corporate Finance
  • Accounting
  • Risk management
  • And more…

If you’re interested in how companies should allocate financial resources, corporate finance may be your calling. If you’re more fascinated by financial markets, how people construct investment portfolios, wealth creation and preservation, investment management could be the route for you. And if you want to learn about probability and statistics and how they correlate to business decisions, then risk management might be the right path to pursue.

What do finance majors earn?

The salaries of finance majors vary widely depending on the careers they choose to pursue. While accountants earn an average salary of $63,000 per year, management consultants earn an average of $86,000 and investment bankers can earn upwards of $250,000.

Next, learn more about this college major such as Accounting and get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as How to Answer: What Motivates You?.

What is Investment Banking?

If you’re a business or finance major, chances are you’ve considered a career in investment banking. Even if you’re not currently majoring in a related discipline, you might be interested in finding out more about investment banking and the types of career options available for recent grads.

Here are some of the key things you need to know about working in investment banking.

What is investment banking?

Investment banking is an area of the financial services industry that focuses on managing and increasing the financial assets of clients. What does this really mean? It means that investment bankers help companies invest their assets with a view towards increasing the value of their portfolios. Investment bankers essentially act as advisors and brokers, helping their clients identify and capitalize on great opportunities.

What do investment bankers do?

The primary responsibility of investment bankers is to advise their clients on investments and help facilitate those investments. This means that investment bankers essentially act as advisors and brokers, assessing the needs of their clients and then finding the right solutions to meet those needs. Once the client has decided how they would like to proceed, it’s up to the bankers to negotiate deals and mergers, ensuring that they are keeping their client’s best interests in mind.

What are the challenges of working in investment banking?

Investment banking is constantly in flux and deeply impacted by changes in financial markets. This can be quite challenging for those who work in the field because it requires them to be quick on their feet and adapt as needed. In addition to fluctuations in the markets, investment banking also presents other challenges such as the ability to manage client assets effectively and to ensure that the worth of those assets increases over time. As a result of the many demands of the industry, investment banking often requires long hours, particularly for those who are just starting out as financial analysts. However, by knowing what to expect and learning how to handle the challenges that arise, this field can be a very exciting one to work in.

What are some of the benefits of working in investment banking?

Although working in investment banking presents many challenges, it also presents many opportunities, particularly for recent grads. For example, because of the fast pace of the industry, employees can build their knowledge bases and skill sets quickly. This will help them advance quickly in their careers and develop transferrable skills. Another great benefit of working in investment banking is being able to build a solid and long-lasting professional network, an invaluable asset which will be useful throughout one’s career.

What is a typical investment banking salary?

Investment banking salaries are some of the highest in the world and this holds true even for entry-level positions. For example, entry-level financial analyst roles typically start at $100,000-$125,000 (including bonuses), while associates with two to three years of experience can earn anywhere from $150,000 to $250,000. Investment banking salaries increase significantly with each year of additional experience, with more senior bankers such as vice presidents and managing directors earning upwards of $650,000 and above.

Although investment banking is certainly a challenging field, it’s also an exciting one that presents many opportunities for recent graduates. The best way to find out if working in investment banking is a good fit for you is to intern at a bank and get a hands-on feel for the role and the culture of the industry.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as 6 Things to Do in Your First Week at a New Job and find answers to common interview questions such as If You Could Invest in One Stock, Which Stock Would it Be?

What is a Fashion Buyer?

If you’ve always been interested in fashion and are thinking of pursuing a career in the fashion industry, you may be wondering what type of role would be a good fit for you. For example, if you’re more passionate about the business side of fashion more than the design side, then a fashion buyer or planner role might exactly what you’re looking for.

What is a fashion buyer? We recently sat down with MILLY Buyer Chrissy Allen to find out.

What is a buyer?

A fashion buyer is someone who makes purchasing decisions for a clothing retailer. And according to Chrissy, it’s a role that requires both an analytical mind and a keen eye for style. Describing her role, Chrissy explains that she “picks pieces for the season based on past sales history and upcoming trends,” always making sure that she’s aware of what has sold well in the past and is likely to do well in the future. In order to do this, she attends fashion shows every season and meets with designers to find out more about the exact styles they’re working on. This helps her get a sense of the market and make informed purchasing decisions that will appeal to MILLY’s customers.

Do all clothing retailers have buyers?

“Big retailers like Saks and Bloomingdale’s have buyers and planners because they’re working with third-party vendors,” Chrissy explains. For smaller companies like MILLY (which is itself a third-party vendor), in-house buyers are usually only hired if the company has its own stores. And, as Chrissy explains, the challenge of working for a small retailer is different from that of working for a larger one. “I have to understand why we are different and make sure that we are catering to our specific customer,” Chrissy says.

Is being a buyer a cross-functional role?

From researching fashion trends to attending fashion shows and meeting with designers, being a buyer can sound like a one-person show. However, it’s actually a much more cross-functional role than it might appear to be. For big retailers like Saks or Bloomingdale’s, buyers are usually part of the merchandising team but for smaller companies like MILLY, they fall under marketing. “I work super closely with our marketing team, constantly collaborating on email blasts and social media content to make sure that we are pushing what isn’t selling so well but also highlighting some of our bestsellers,” Chrissy explains.

The best part of working in a cross-functional position? For Chrissy, it’s figuring out the unique selling point of the brand and helping to communicate that message directly to customers. “What can we offer the customer that nobody else can offer them?” That’s the question she always has in her mind as she makes purchasing decisions and the one she helps the marketing team communicate on a daily basis.

What are some of the perks of working in fashion?

If you think that working in fashion means having access to lots of free clothes, it turns out that you’re partly right. “The discounts are pretty good,” Chrissy says, joking that it’s very tempting to take advantage of them. In addition to discounts, buyers can also borrow clothes from the company’s closet, testing out new styles before they officially go on sale.

Being a fashion buyer is one of several great career paths in the fashion industry. In addition to offering you the opportunity to stay on top of the latest trends and meet some of the hottest designers around, this role also offers you the opportunity to understand the business side of fashion and to play a part in bringing looks from the runway to the consumer. If that sounds like an exciting opportunity, then becoming a fashion buyer might just be right for you.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as  Top 5 Interview Questions for Fashion Buyers and find answers to common interview questions such as Why Do You Want to Work Here?

How to Become a Fashion Buyer

If you’re passionate about fashion but more interested in the business side than the design side, then chances are you’ve already started researching different merchandising roles and wondering whether becoming a fashion buyer might be right for you. To find out what the role entails, and how college students and recent grads can break into the industry, we sat down with MILLY Fashion Buyer Chrissy Allen to find out her top tips on getting your foot in the door.

What exactly is a fashion buyer?

According to Chrissy, a fashion buyer is a person who makes purchasing decisions for a clothing retailer. “A buyer is someone who goes to market,” she explains. What does that actually mean? In short, it means that buyers handpick the styles that end up in clothing stores. “I go through and pick the pieces for the season based on past sales history and upcoming trends,” she says. The best part of the role: being able to showcase the unique aspects of the brand you work for and demonstrate how you’re making a difference to consumers.

What kind of skills do you need in order to be a fashion buyer?

Although many people think that being a buyer means spending time in the company’s fashion closet, the position actually requires a lot of analytical skills and business savvy. “I am in Excel a lot which isn’t always what people think about when they think of a buyer,” Chrissy explains. “It’s about looking at our sales, looking at what worked in past seasons, what didn’t work and also taking into consideration designers’ vision for how they see the upcoming season.” In order to analyze sales numbers and quantify trends, buyers need to be analytical and able to think on their feet. For example, if they a specific trend that they select is not selling well, they have to be able to adjust their strategy mid-season while also trying to find ways to boost sales.

How can college students and recent grads break into the fashion industry?

“Internships are the most important thing,” Chrissy says. In fact, they’re far more important than your college major. “I was a political science major so I had absolutely no fashion education, but I knew that I wanted to be in fashion from a young age,” she explains. The key was finding an internship that would get her there. And that’s exactly what she did. After her freshman year of college, Chrissy found an internship on the men’s wholesale team at Theory and it was exactly the foot in the door she needed. “I was like a sponge, soaking up everything everybody said in a meeting, and that’s how I knew that this was what I wanted to do.” In addition to taking on one multiple internships, Chrissy also emphasizes that it’s important to maintain the contacts you make. “Maintaining those contacts is so important because the fashion world is tiny and everybody knows each other and can connect you in some way,” she explains, emphasizing the importance of building your professional network while you’re still in school.

What should you wear to an interview for a fashion buyer position?

When interviewing for a position in the fashion industry, “you really want to cater to that audience,” Chrissy explains. For a brand like MILLY, which is contemporary and fun, it’s important to wear something that shows your personality.“We’re not a finance company so we want to see you shine through but you want to make sure that it’s work appropriate.” For both women and men, this means potentially wearing something from the retailer’s current collection and ensuring that your outfit matches the look and feel of the brand you’re interviewing for.

Pro Tip: If you’re unsure of what to wear to an interview at a fashion brand, be sure to check out the company’s website and social channels, focusing on photos that show the team at work. This will give you a great sense of the company culture and help you pick an appropriate outfit.

Chrissy’s final piece of advice for getting into the fashion industry (or any industry) is this: “Be passionate. Be out there searching for an internship,” she says, emphasizing that your drive and passion will help you stand out from the pack and potentially land a great job at a brand like MILLY.

Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as How to Write a Resume That Stands Out and find answers to common interview questions such as What Gets You Up in the Morning?

What is an Accounting Major and is it Right for Me?

If you’ve always been good at math and seeing trends and patterns in numbers, and you consider yourself a skilled communicator who can relay complex data analysis to others, then an accounting major (and career path) may be for you.

Accountants look at financial trends to consult nonprofits, governments and businesses on how to best do their jobs and run their organizations. These analyses must be detailed, complex and data-heavy, allowing people to gain valuable insights from them.

What is an accounting major?

Accounting majors learn how to maintain financial accounts. It prepares students to be accountants by teaching them about accounting principles like auditing, reporting, budgeting and tax regulations.

Is it right for me?

Because accountants could be responsible for an organization’s financial well-being, accountants need to be able to pay close attention to detail and handle large amounts of data at a time. One wrong error or misfiled document could lead to big problems for a company or organization.

To figure out if an accounting career could be in your future, here are several key questions to consider:

  • Am I detail-oriented? Do I pay attention to detail without anyone asking me to?
  • Am I good with numbers? Does working with large sets of data excite or intimidate me?
  • Do I like working with things like balance sheets, profitability forms and tax filings? Do I have confidence in filling out forms like these and presenting them on behalf of a company, nonprofit or government entity?
  • Am I able to see and analyze patterns in large amounts of data and relay that information to people who may not be as well-acquainted with the data as I am?

What can I do with an accounting degree?

Just because you start off crunching numbers doesn’t mean you have to spend your entire job or career doing just that. Accountants have the ability to choose whether or not to work in the public or private sector as well as if they want to work on the more business-oriented side of any company. If you’re looking to go into business and want an analytical edge on the competition, an accounting degree could be perfect for you.

What do accountants make?

The amount you’ll make with an accounting degree depends on the type of company you pursue as well as how far you decide to continue your education. College students who graduate with a degree in accounting make a median salary of $50,500. For people who choose to continue their education and become Certified Public Accountants (CPA), the median salary is $73,800, and it can climb to well over $124,000 per year. Additionally, those with a CPA certification make 5% to 15% more than their non-CPA counterparts.

Next, learn more about this college major such as the Types of Internships for Accounting Majors and get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as When to Start Applying for a Summer Internship.