What Skills Do I Need to Become an Accounting Specialist?Publish Date: Apr 23, 2010
Working as an accounting specialist can mean a busy day that is filled with many different projects and responsibilities. An accounting specialist typically works on reports that are used to follow sales trends, that are meant to help with decisions regarding a budget, or that are part of an audit being conducted.
An accounting specialist may work by himself or by herself for much of the day, crunching these numbers and producing these reports, but may also work as part of a team for various reasons. They may also act as something of an administrative assistant for an officer of the company, producing preliminary reports that he or she may use.
You may not have thought of your education as being a skill, but it is necessary to keep your education current in order to succeed with accounting practices
So what skills do you need to become an accounting specialist? Let's take a closer look at this here.
Your education is going to be tied into your skills as an accounting specialist because of course accounting is not something you can learn as you go. The fundamentals of accounting are key to this position, but today's accountant specialist should be able to offer more than just the basics.
One fundamental part of accounting in any company is understanding current laws and regulations that affect accounting procedures. These laws change constantly, so a good accounting specialist will understand the need to keep up with those current regulations. There may also be regulations that affect one company in particular, such as handling payroll and accounting for multi-state employers.
An accounting specialist that furthers his or her education on a regular basis will be one that is considered to be highly skilled, and will in turn be highly valued. You may not have thought of your education as being a skill, but it is necessary to keep your education current in order to succeed with accounting practices.
Rarely does anyone in a company today work on his or her own completely; most everyone is part of a team of one sort or another. An accounting specialist is no different. While much of the work of an accountant is done alone, often an accounting specialist will work with a team to study those reports produced in order to make further decisions.
For instance, an accounting specialist may produce a report on the sales trends for a company's products. He or she may then work with a team from the sales department to study this report in depth to decide if some products should be discontinued, or if some don't offer a high enough profit margin even though it sells well.
This means that a skilled accounting specialist will be able to work in a team environment. He or she will need to get along with a wide range of personalities and work with any number of departments in this way. It's a mistake to think that accounting means simply working with numbers and paperwork.
A skilled accounting specialist will also need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively with these other personalities. Often they need more clarification when it comes to the reports and findings of an accounting specialist, so he or she will need to be able to answer questions clearly. They may also be part of making recommendations for new processes and procedures based on those reports, so of course an accounting specialist needs to understand a company or business as a whole.
There are many skills that an accounting specialist needs, over and above their accounting skills. Obviously crunching numbers is a big part of any job in the field of accounting, but understanding the impact and importance of those numbers is also a necessary skill!