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14 April 2021

Tips to become a successful accountant

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To become a fully qualified accountant you need to be registered as a Chartered Accountant (CA) or a Certified Practising Accounting (CPA). While you can commence working in an accounting role with just an undergraduate degree, employers highly regard professionals with a CA and CPA qualification. With a CA or CPA qualification, you’re more competitive in the workforce and are positioned well to take on senior leadership and management roles.
To be eligible to study the CA or CPA qualifications, you’re required to have a degree in business or commerce that has been approved by either organisation. (Students who choose to study UniSA Online’s Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) are eligible to undertake the CA or CPA programs).

What type of accountant can I become?

Accountants don’t just look after taxes, though this is a highly sought-after service. You could pursue roles in forensic accounting, which would have you analysing financial records to ensure they’re compliant with standards and laws. Auditors, too, are accuracy experts and make sure records are precise, while management accountants advise business leaders on the financial implications of business decisions. There are also accountant roles in assurance and risk, insolvency and reconstruction, and investment.

What accounting jobs are available?

Accountants play a vital role in every business or organisation and projected career growth is strong. Not all accountants work at the Big Four banks or in public accounting firms. You could work in a multitude of business types across a diverse range of industries, in areas you’re passionate about. From sport and fashion to entertainment and environmentally-conscious businesses – the world is your oyster. If you’re looking to change careers, accounting can also serve as a launching pad for roles in business, consulting, not-for-profits, law, education, government, and small-to-medium businesses.

Three tips to become a successful accountant

Speak to people who work in the field

Speak with people who work in the field who are in senior positions and are experienced in recruiting. They have immense and up-to-date knowledge of what is required and are usually glad to share their knowledge and insights.

Build your professional network

Create networks of practitioners by strategically using your LinkedIn account. Connect with industry professionals and join relevant LinkedIn industry groups, where you can find a wealth of valuable insights and guidance from more experienced professionals. LinkedIn groups offer professionals in the same industry or with similar interests the opportunity to connect, share knowledge and insights, seek, and offer advice and, importantly, build industry connections. It’s who you know as well as what you know.

Develop your soft skills

All the research on the employers of business graduates shows that employers seek strong communicators, as well as graduates who work well in teams, meet deadlines, and use feedback to improve their performance. Get involved in projects at work that allow you to develop these skillsets, and remember highlight your achievements in your CV.

*UniSA Online Accounting graduates will be eligible to undertake the CA or CPA programs.

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