The CPA profession offers unlimited possibilities for career growth and development. From students to seasoned professionals, the AICPA has a variety of tools to help you take your career to the next level.
Perhaps I sound like a broken record...
But believe me, if you attend conferences and aren't on Twitter, you are missing out. Case in point: the Digital CPA Conference last week. I got to the hotel in Washington D.C. (ahem...I mean Maryland. Right, Tom Hood?), logged in to my computer and discovered Twitter was already all aflutter with #DigitalCPA activity. If you know me, you know this made me very happy!
Follow a conference hashtag for the inside scoop.
By following and participating on a conference hashtag, you get to see the full picture of what's happening. People are sharing their favorite quotes, new ideas, what they are learning and my favorite... pictures.
Continue reading "Twitter Delivers the Full Picture of a CPA Conference" »
Last month, I had the pleasure of attending the very first Women’s Global Leadership Summit,
organized by the AICPA Women’s Initiatives Executive Committee, along with
sponsors AICPA Private Companies Practice Section, the American
Woman's Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Canadian Institute of Chartered
Accountants. What an inspiring experience with a group of accomplished,
empowered women. Women from all areas of accounting gathered to talk about the
business case for creating inroads for women leaders in the profession, best
practices for onboarding, preparing and maintaining female leadership and the
effectiveness of establishing mentorship and advocacy programs.
I know many of my peers are striving to stay ahead of the
complexities of the profession, build a solid reputation and balance work and
family in an increasingly challenging environment. I came out of the Summit
feeling energized that more women are assuming leadership roles in accounting. I thought: “What advice do I wish I had heard
from my peers and role models when I was just starting out in the profession?”
Here’s what came to mind:
Continue reading "5 Tips for Aspiring Women Leaders" »
around the globe face extraordinary challenges when navigating through the
current global economy. To thrive in the long-term, organizations must
constantly innovate, evolve and transform.
of the most critical factors that determines an organization's fate in this
environment is the quality of its human capital and the way it manages its
recent report from the AICPA and CIMA showed that while most companies
understand the importance of human capital, they do not appear to have the
right systems, processes and information in place to manage talent effectively.
Think about your organization for a minute. Does it invest in training and the
development of talent and skills? Or does it view training as a compliance
Continue reading "Does Your Organization Invest in its Employees’ Training and Skills Development?" »
It seems that the corporate world is rife with fraud these days,
and as CPAs on the financial front lines, it’s up to us to protect the public
from these crimes.
Just last week prosecutors in the high-profile fraud case against former
Nortel executives gave
closing arguments, telling a Toronto courtroom three
former Nortel executives knowingly breached accounting rules to manipulate
financial records and reap millions in bonuses, keeping the now-insolvent tech
firm's investors and the public in the dark.
it won’t happen to you.
Many years ago, as a first year staff auditor, I was assigned to
the audit team of a not-for-profit organization. One of my areas was cash, but
after going over budget by many hours, I still couldn’t get the general ledger
balance to reconcile to the bank statements. I was convinced that I just didn’t
know how to do a proper bank reconciliation, but if they just gave me some more
time, I would figure it out.
Continue reading "Catch Them When You Can" »
USA Today recently reported that service businesses are leading an uneven job recovery. In the service sector, accounting firms have regained 87% of the jobs they lost, in part because of the growth of start-up businesses, new financial rules and U.S. companies expanding globally.
Salaries of accounting graduates are continuing to rise. In an April 2012 report on the starting salaries of the college class of 2012, the National Association of Colleges and Employers said the median salary of accounting majors was $47,800, up 2.8% from the 2011 median salary. The overall average salary of new graduates was $42,569, up 4.5% from 2011.
Long term, employment of accountants and auditors is expected to increase 16% from 2010 to 2020, or about as fast as the average for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Over that ten-year period, accounting employment is forecasted to increase from 1.22 million to 1.41 million jobs.
These statistics point to continued growth in the job market for CPAs, but where will CPAs find job and career opportunities?
Continue reading "Accounting Offers More Career Opportunities: If You Know How to Find Them" »
Hi! My name is Joseph Farco and I’ve recently completed a summer internship with the AICPA. I assisted the Communications and Media Channels team in the New York office. While working with the AICPA has not only allowed me to learn more about numerous issues facing the profession, it also has helped me develop one of the most important skills for any business professional: communications.
From a young age I always knew I wanted to go into business, because I visited the New York Stock Exchange once a year on Kids’ Day. How was I allowed to go to this event on a yearly basis? Well, my father has worked on the floor of the exchange since 1980. His desire to see me do well in life combined with my annual visits to the NYSE, fueled my fire to go into business. This led me to mostly business electives in high school which included two college level accounting classes. I was surprised with how much I enjoyed those classes and I became interested in learning more about accounting. My passion for mathematics led me to embark on a journey to Seton Hall University, where I graduated in May 2012 with a BS in Accounting. My future plans are to pursue an MBA in Finance and eventually sit for the CPA Exam. My long term goal is to one day open up my own practice.
While the focus of my internship has not been entirely on accounting work, I’ve learned a number of lessons that could be used on a daily basis in the “real world.”
Continue reading "The Importance of Communications in Accounting" »
This week’s ‘In the News’ post comes from the AICPA and CPA/SEA Interchange conference in St. Louis. I’ve been learning a lot at the sessions and having a good time networking with my colleagues at the state societies and sharing ideas and information. There has been a lot going on in the profession recently and I’ve been trying my best to stay on top of it all. I’ve highlighted a few of the more interesting articles I’ve seen in the past week and shared them with you below. If you see something that you think was particularly important, send me an email or let me know in the comments section.
Continue reading "In the News: Accounting Firms Regain 87% of Jobs Lost During the Recession" »
What’s the best advice to give virtually anyone starting a new job? Corey Cines, blogger with the AICPA’s This Way to CPA website, wrote “From Backpack to Briefcase: How I handled the jump into Public Accounting,” to offer his tips for starting life as a firm newbie. It’s excellent advice for any young CPA looking to build a foundation in accounting. Not only that, Corey’s great advice also applies to anyone transitioning into a new role or a new organization.
Asking “dumb” questions, staying positive and practicing stress relief: these are just some of Corey’s gems for getting the lay of the land.
We asked several AICPA CPAs on staff what advice they wish they had gotten when they first entered the accounting workforce. Here are some tidbits:
Continue reading "Wise Advice from the New Kid" »
I’ve always been attracted to the “serving the public interest” element of our profession. As an auditor I didn’t see myself so much as a policeman enforcing the rules, but rather as the surrogate for the investors and creditors who had limited access to information about a company’s finances and operations. I knew that these nameless, faceless third parties trusted me and that no matter what, I could not break that trust, for it was the cornerstone of the profession.
“Moments of obligation” are those moments or events when you feel yourself pulled down a path that leads you to work that will benefit others. At various points in my career, I’ve made more conscious decisions about pursuing paths to give back to the community. Of course, thousands of CPAs make decisions every day to contribute their skills, experiences and—perhaps most importantly—their credibility to efforts aimed to benefit the public good.
Continue reading "Moments of Obligation: A Call for CPAs to Join the Financial Conversation" »
When should you make the transition from public accounting to business and industry? That’s the question Dan Griffiths tackles in his latest blog post on ThisWaytoCPA.com, the AICPA’s hub for college students, CPA candidates and newly-minted CPAs. Touching on the core skillset that public accounting provides a young professional, Griffiths makes the argument that opportunities exist in all areas of business. What’s important is that CPAs pursue the opportunities they are most passionate about.
Continue reading "When Opportunities Abound, Follow Your Passion " »
Since so many of you were interested in Friday's post, 6 Steps to Get Ahead in Your Career, I decided that I should share some other career strategies also adapted from a recent presentation by author and career coach Donald Asher.
Continue reading "5 More Steps to Get Ahead in Your Career" »
What’s the difference between a CPA's salary of $45,000 and $90,000 per year? Skillset. The difference between someone's salary being $90,000 and $200,000 per year, however, is not a difference in skillset, but a difference in how they manage their careers. Here are some steps—adapted from a recent presentation from author and career coach Donald Asher—which you can take to advance your career.
Continue reading "6 Steps to Get Ahead in Your Career" »
Personal branding is about promoting what makes you unique and what allows you to stand out from the crowd. A major piece of branding is creating your professional “bio” or biography. That bio is, after all, a specific place to capture your “story” …. so it is personal.
For many CPAs, your bio is likely already on the web and accessible by anyone and anywhere. Since it is so accessible, it presents a nice branding opportunity – to spread your message about the value you provide and the opportunities you want to attract.
When reviewing your bio, consider three Cs of personal branding – Compelling, Consistent and Clear:
Continue reading "The Brand YOU: Your Bio" »
Passing the U.S. Uniform CPA Examination is one of three crucial requirements to obtaining licensure for one of the most respected professions in the world, the other two being education and experience.
A great deal goes into ensuring the CPA Exam is of the highest quality. A team of more than 75 dedicated volunteers, sitting at the top of the CPA profession and representing areas such as small and large firms, education, government and non-profit, work in collaboration with the AICPA’s professional staff. These volunteers serve as members of the Board of Examiners, the oversight volunteer board for the CPA Exam, and its seven sub-committees, covering such topics as content, scoring and state board of accountancy communications.
The AICPA Communications and Media Channels team had an opportunity to speak with two AICPA volunteers on how their experience has benefited the CPA profession and their careers:
- Wendy Perez, CPA, current chair of the Board of Examiners, retired Ernst & Young partner and past president of the California Board of Accountancy; and
- Mari DeVries, CPA, chair of the CPA Exam’s Content Committee and member of the Board of Examiners, managing shareholder of DeVries CPAs of Arizona, P.C. and past president of the Arizona State Board of Accountancy.
Continue reading "Behind the Scenes with Volunteers on Making the CPA Exam" »
In today’s job market, everyone is looking for a way to stand out. There a few key leadership skills that will propel you to the “top of the pile,” whether you’re a seasoned professional or just graduating. This Way to CPA’s latest blog post highlights those leadership lessons and skills that members of Beta Alpha Psi should have upon graduation. These skills can propel your search for a new job and demonstrate your value as an employee:
- Be an effective team player.
- Develop organizational skills.
- Grow leadership abilities.
- Communicate professionally.
Continue reading "4 Leadership Skills That Will Make You Stand Out" »
Do you have a current professional development plan in place or are you typically rushing to earn CPE credits before your license renewal deadline?
The best way to ensure you are making the most of continuing education is through professional development planning, an often-overlooked and under-practiced activity. As a professional, consider integrating a professional development plan into all stages of your career planning. As CPAs, once we earn our license, we commit to lifelong learning. Many of us have the first few years of our professional development courses mapped out for us, but ultimately each of us are responsible for determining what we need to learn and for managing our own CPE activity. We must take part in webinars, conferences, or course work to meet these mandatory CPE requirements. However, beyond the requisite credit hours, what we focus on and learn is entirely up to us.
Continue reading "Creating a Professional Development Plan" »
Lifelong learning is critical to an accounting career. Forty hours per year may not be adequate to keep you abreast of all the changes in the standard setting landscape or provide enough information to fully understand the impact of pending tax legislation—but continuing education can be an integral part of that process.
Continuing professional development enables you to build upon your knowledge and further develop skills in areas related to your professional practice. Over the course of a 40-year career, continuing professional development can make a huge difference in your skill set...if it is the right kind of education.
Continue reading "Make the Most of Your Professional Development" »