Investors, business owners, banks and other financially responsible organizations are familiar with the field of accounting and bookkeeping. They tend to work with a certified public accountant, or CPA for short, which is the official title for any accountant in the United States that has successfully passed the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination. They also have to meet state education and experience requirements in order to get certification and license to work as a CPA. When there are a group of CPAs working together, they form an accounting firm, which will have different duties depending the field of interest. A basic accountant is responsible for measuring, disclosing and providing assurance to managers, investors, tax regulators and other organizations that want to make decisions about their financial data. But in order to get certified, an accountant will need vast amounts of education and experience.
When it comes to specific duties, some CPAs may become auditors, while others become government accountants. Some will choose to stay as public accountants or they work in business management. There are many variable opportunities for a CPA to follow a path that they are interested in, and can provide several means of services to clients that need help. It’s important to know what kinds of accountants there are out there in order to understand the world of finance a little better.
The most commonly known accountant is the public accountant, which will handle several different financial services including tax preparations, general accounting, auditing, bookkeeping and consultation. They can offer services to any business or individual looking to work generally, or they can be employed by an accounting firm. Public accountants tend to work most often with public companies, which need consistent forms sent to the IRS, the SEC and to the public, so the public accountant is knowledgeable in gathering the necessary documents.
Accountants that work specifically in taxes are called tax accountants, and forensic accountants are the ones that work to investigate corporate fraud and other financial crimes. Management accountants to work as part of the company that hired them, and are considered to be part of the staff instead of working for an accounting firm. They handle accounting and bookkeeping tasks internally, which is something that most companies will need in order to work smoothly on a day-to-day basis, as they are the ones that will consult the business owners on making daily financial decisions. Often, they are passionate about the company that they work for and can become senior staff members.
Almost always, auditors are certified public accountants, but they are far different from bookkeepers, although companies work often with both of them. Auditors are independent from the company, and they have to be in order to perform audits, which tells them whether a company is working properly or and not and with interest to the employees. Bookkeepers are accountants that can be hired by a company to keep company records organized.
Government accountants are those that overlook financial records of the government. They are hired usually to oversee spending habits. The IRS even hires several accountants of their own, who are hired to check into taxpayers and making sure that all money owed to the government is paid for. There are government accountants for federal government as well as local and state governments. Some accountants work directly as consultants to specific businesses and individuals, while there are other that provide IT services for advanced accounting software for businesses. There are some who conduct environmental conduct compliance audits and there are international accountants that check compliance with international finance trade laws. And yet, there are so many more types of accountants.
The process of becoming a certified public accountant can definitely be a long journey, and if you are interested in working with an accountant or even a CPA, then maybe this essay will provide some insight on what kinds there are out there. Considering that so many of them cater to specific needs, it may be easier on you to narrow down your search for one for your specific needs. There are a lot of inner workings that happen in finances, and if you have general questions, then it’s suggested that you talk to a public accountant first, as they have a general working knowledge and see if you can get referrals to other accountants if that is necessary. Eventually, you will find a certified public accountant that can work for your and your goals, and your financial situation will straighten out.