What does a Chartered Accountant do?
Chartered Accountants can specialise in various accounting areas, including audit and assurance, applied finance, management accounting and financial accounting and reporting. However, some Chartered Accountants provide services across multiple accounting functions. In addition, these professionals can also oversee a company’s entire accounting department. Chartered Accountants can work for a variety of non-profit and for-profit organisations. These include banks, investment brokerages, corporations, charities, hospitals, educational institutions and private practice firms.
Chartered Accountant skills and qualifications
To succeed in their job, Chartered Accountants need a mix of both technical and non-technical skills. Non-technical skills include strong interpersonal skills, as these professionals need to develop and maintain strong relationships with clients and fellow employees. Chartered Accountants also need strong communication skills, including the ability to actively listen to stakeholders and also clearly relay information. In addition, the job requires the following skills:
- A methodical approach and strong problem-solving skills to solve financial reporting errors
- Strong mathematical skills for analysing numbers and performing calculations
- A high level of computer literacy, including knowledge of relevant software applications, such as accounting packages
- Sound business acumen to effectively support and guide strategic business decisions
- Excellent analytical skills to sift through lots of data and make accurate conclusions
Chartered Accountant experience requirements
The level of experience a Chartered Accountant needs depends on the position. Apart from taking on trainees, employers are often willing to hire newly qualified Chartered Accountants for junior positions. The reason for this is that the training programmes that these professionals undergo all include substantial on-the-job training. However, those who are applying for more senior positions or specialist posts will need to show more experience. Employers may ask for experience in a specific area, such as forensic accounting or corporate finance. Candidates may also need proven experience in managing a portfolio of clients or leading a team of Accountants.
Chartered Accountant education and training requirements
There are various paths candidates can take to become a Chartered Accountant. Although an undergraduate degree in accounting or a related field may be beneficial, it’s possible to become a Chartered Accountant without a degree. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS), for instance, offers separate training routes for school leavers, graduates and experienced finance professionals. Those who enter a programme directly after leaving school typically take around five years before they qualify. As part of the programme, candidates are placed at an ICAS-authorised employer where they obtain 750 days of practical on-the-job experience.
Chartered Accountant salary expectations
According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for an Accountant is £34,642 per year. However, their salary will vary depending on factors like location and employer.
Job description samples for similar positions
If this job description doesn’t adequately describe the job opening you have, here are some job description samples of similar positions to consider: