Job DescriptionGenerally speaking, accountants manage and keep track of the finances of people, organizations, or companies. When many people think of accountants they think of Certified Personal Accountants (CPAs), many of whom own their own businesses or work on a freelance-type basis. However, as a staff accountant, you’ll be hired on as an employee for one organization or business and managing (or helping to manage) the finances of that organization or business.If you don’t like to make sales calls, the idea of owning your own business is intimidating, and you’d rather work for a company, being a staff accountant is a great opportunity for you. If, however, you prefer independence and enjoy the challenge of creating your own list of clientele you may want to pursue the CPA route.Depending on the size of the company you’ll be working with you could either be the sole accountant for the entire company, or one of a team of accountants, each of whom is typically assigned to one specific area of the company’s finances. Most staff accountants work full-time, but very few work over 40 hours per week according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Education & TrainingThe education you will need to complete in order to become a staff accountant may vary depending on what capacity you’d like to work in. Many companies will require you to become certified as a CPA even if you’re working as a staff accountant. Others only require that you have a degree in accounting or finance; this is usually for those who act in a bookkeeping capacity instead of dealing with clients one on one and providing individualized support.If you are required to obtain your CPA certification, you’ll have to obtain it through the American Institute of CPAs. Their website tells you exactly where to go, how to study for your exam, and offers other information about obtaining your CPA certification. The Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) also offers the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) certification, which may be helpful to those seeking a staff accountant career as opposed to one as a CPA. Once you know who you’d like to work for (or what type of organization) you can start to narrow down the educational options and pursue your degree.
Staff Accounting Salary ExpectationsYour staff accountant cover letter will certainly benefit from having a solid educational background, as mentioning any educational achievements and certifications will surely make an impact. However, your staff accountant cover letter must be quality in order to obtain the highest salary possible. Your background, experience, education, and recommendations in short, your resume will certainly be taken into consideration, but your cover letter is where you can prove your communication skills and sell yourself, which may add to the salary you can obtain.On average, however, accountants earn about $63,550 per year, or $30.55 per hour. If you’re having trouble creating your staff accountant cover letter, check out the sample below.