Are you a high school student looking for a viable major? Or someone who already has an accounting degree and are wondering what you can do with it? Whatever the case, if you have a passion for money management and want a stable career, accounting can open many doors.
If you’re looking to expand your horizons in terms of your career, then getting a degree in accounting could be the answer.
An accounting degree has an excellent return on investment. And according to the Government of Canada’s website, the job market for accountants will be consistent for years to come. According to their projections from 2019 to 2028, the demand for accountants will be slightly higher than the number of job seekers. Meaning that if you undergo an accounting degree program, you’ll be able to enter the workforce as soon as you graduate.
What will I learn in an accounting degree program?
During your program, you will learn essential business fundamentals that can be applied to a wide variety of career paths.
Essentially, you will learn how to maintain the financial accounts of businesses or individuals. This means learning about all the financial rules and regulations, applying them, creating financial records, and communicating financial data to internal and external stakeholders.
You will learn about accounting principles like auditing, reporting, budgeting and tax regulations. Your degree will also give you relevant experience in business strategy, information systems, quantitative analysis, risk management and business ethics.
Accountants can consult governments, businesses, nonprofits and individuals about financial trends that will allow them to operate in the best manner. So you will be able to analyze complex data to gain valuable insights.
Like most other degrees, you can opt to specialize in a particular accounting field. We recommend that you specialize to help you differentiate yourself on the job market. For example, you can boost your accounting knowledge by learning advanced accounting, cost accounting or forensic accounting.
These skills will prepare you for various jobs, from financial planning to budget management to data analysis.
The Accounting Job Market
According to jobwings.ca, “Accounting and finance specialists are among the most sought-after professionals in Canada.” The accounting job market outlook in Canada is healthy, so you’ll have good prospects if you are an accounting graduate.
About 90% of graduates will be able to find a job in accounting. This is due to a few different factors. First, there has been a decrease in the labour pool, while the number of graduating professionals has declined recently. Demand for this profession has also been increasing for the past few years. The shortage of accounting professionals and the increase in demand has caused salaries to grow, as well.
Some Common Accounting Degree Jobs
- AP/AR clerk
- Accounting Clerk
- Accounting Technician
- Financial Analyst
- Staff Accountant
Experienced level with CPA designation:
- Accounting Manager
- Senior Accountant
- Financial Planning and Analysis
But these aren’t the only jobs out there. You’ll be surprised to know that an accounting degree can open more doors for you in many different industries.
Unique Jobs for People with an Accounting Degree
Environmental accountingGetting a degree in accounting and pairing it with environmental law will allow you to work in this field. These days, many businesses are looking for environmental accountants to help them comply with environmental laws.
Forensic accountantWith more and more of the world coming online, there is even more opportunity for fraud. Businesses, organizations and individuals need to protect themselves as much as possible, and the demand for forensic accountants is ever-growing. Forensic accountants produce audits to identify liability, fraud and validation.
Entertainment accountingProfessionals in the entertainment industry like musicians, writers or actors require special assistance. If you have a background in copyright law and an accounting degree, you can offer your services to these professionals. You could also work in film production or studios, radio stations or television networks or other places in the entertainment industry.
Accounting educationSuppose you have a passion for teaching and have a lot of experience with your CPA designation. In that case, you could explore a return to academia by taking up a faculty position at a university or college. This will show you what it might be like to become an accounting professor and pursue your Ph.D. in Business Administration. You can also receive funding from a University to conduct accounting research projects by yourself or within a team.
Technology and Data Analytics
Are you a natural with computers, technology or IT in general? You could use that knowledge in conjunction with your accounting degree to complete data analytics initiatives for public or private sectors. You have access to jobs that include IT, technology auditing, and software revenue management.
You can also become a financial analyst who helps guide companies in making investments, assessing stock performance and economic trends.
Lots of Options for Accountant Undergraduates
If you thought that an accounting degree could only give you opportunities in public or private accounting, or you could only be a simple “accountant” who pushes pencils all day, you might be pleasantly surprised that those aren’t your only career options.
Through specialization in different areas, like forensic auditing or environmental auditing, you can explore other career options in a span of industries. You can also increase your professional skills through attending conferences, networking, joining professional associations or finding a mentor to show you what else you could do with your accounting degree.
As newer industries start emerging, your options with your accounting degree are endless! No matter your professional or academic background, pursuing a degree in accounting is beneficial for anyone looking for a career that has stood the test of time.