Looking to pursue a profession in accounting but worried about it being boring? To an outsider, the idea of crunching numbers all day long can be rather monotonous; however, there is more to accounting than just the notion of crunching numbers that deters most people.
Contrary to popular belief, accounting is anything but boring. It is a fast-moving and highly sorted job field. In 2020, the financial accounting industry will generate $110 billion and reach $868 billion by 2022. Accounting is more than just sitting at a desk and calculating all day.
To clarify any doubts about mundane accounting, we will tackle all misconceptions regarding the field. We will also shed light on how the field got its reputation and why accounting is a great field choice.
Is Accounting Boring?
No, accounting is far from boring. There is more to accounting than just numbers. The finance industry is an exciting and important sector that is here to stay forever. The times have changed and so have accounting practices. Sure, there was a time when accountants were really just number-crunching machines. But now, the reality is far from that. Accounting is the backbone of industries and is not going away anytime soon.
Here are some reasons why being an accountant is anything but boring.
You Are the Problem Solver
Accountants help make businesses what they are. They are the critical thinkers behind the company and the major problem solvers. Accountants are highly valuable to organisations helping them make smarter decisions and develop new, innovative ideas. They mainly think ahead and plan for the future of the company. With such a dynamic industry, accountants are always learning something new.
You Are the Out of Box Thinker
Accountants are good with numbers, but they are also very creative. They can see the big picture and have the ability to think outside the box. They often have wide awareness and a head for figures.
You Have All the Financial Information
Accounts have the entire company’s financial statements in their palm, organising them and keeping records straight. Accounts are handed numbers, and accountants convert them into data and valuable information. They maintain data accuracy and keep everything up to date.
You Keep the Money Going
Businesses rely on finances that accountants handle. Financial health determines the progress and success of the company. Accounts balance the current finances and look ahead to the future, so there are no run-ins with any financial disasters. They analyse scenarios and see how they will affect the cash flow so a business does not run out of money.
They track how much money is coming into the company and how much it is going out. Because, well, without money, there will be no business. Money is necessary for investing in the growth of the company.
You Are the Consultant
Not only do they balance the books, but they also are key consultants. Accounts are excellent communicators, often communicating with colleagues and business leaders. Accountants directly consult company clients and leaders regarding their options.
You Are Highly Responsible
Since accountants have the complete company information in front of their eyes, they ought to be responsible. They handle everyone’s figures and keep the company from making bad decisions.
You Are Precious
Accountants help keep things smooth around the company. They streamline the workflow and keep things running. They can recognize potential issues before they even occur and are always on the lookout for any needed improvements. Accountants are instrumental in holding the whole business together.
There Are Many Choices Available
Accounts are in huge demand for global organisations and are among the most highly paid professions. Accounting is not limited to just financial or management jobs. The industry is constantly changing, so there are various routes and options that you can take as an accountant. You can experience Project Managing, Forensic Accounting, Auditing, Finance Controlling, Budget Analysing, Tax Advising, and more.
Why Do People Say Accounting Is Boring?
People have gained the general idea that an accountant’s life is all dull and dry. They deem it boring just because it deals with numbers and data. Another factor that has added to the myth is that accountancy is repetitive, and there is no room for creativity.
A good account can not only save a company from drowning but can actually save a company loads of money. Without an accountant, a business is most likely to crumble. Accounts are the building blocks of organisations and help them keep steady, if not growing.
Is a Career in Accounting Repetitive?
Accounting is perceived as monotonous and formulaic. With the help of new AI Technologies and the Cloud, computing accounting is quite the contrary. The state-of-the-art technology delivers insights, making businesses thrive. This saves up a lot of time for the accounts, eliminating mundane tasks so accountants can focus on more critical projects and strategic areas of the corporate world. Using cloud computing platforms allows tools and data access from anywhere, anytime.
Mostly in large firms, accountants are handed a collection of tasks, so they are working on various projects. This will help break the monotony and keep things interesting. No two days are going to be alike. It also provides accountants with hands-on experience in handling different kinds of projects.
Do Only Boring People Become Accountants?
No, the finance industry does not just consist of all boring people. Unlike the images projected in movies and TV shows, accountants are fascinating and intelligent. They are great conversationalists with extraordinary thinking abilities and vast knowledge. If you are drawn to solving problems and like analysing information, this field is definitely for you.
Sure, the industry appeals more to introverts as it does not involve much interaction with other people. But it is not entirely made up of dull, blank-faced people like the image that you may have perceived.
Is Being an Accountant Stressful?
The truth is that any job is stressful if it is not the right fit for you. Many factors play into stressing a person, and it doesn’t necessarily have to do anything with the profession. A lot of workloads, an unforgiving boss, unrealistic expectations, and deadlines are just a few examples of everyday stressors.
Accounting is often perceived as stressful because it involves a lot of information processing and accurate data reporting. Accounts are given specific windows in which they have to complete their projects, like filing tax returns.
Managing a big organisation’s finances can be stressful, and reasonably so. A tiny mistake can cause the company a lot of critical damage. The more important the position is, the more pressure you will face.
What Sorts of People Are Suited to Becoming Accountants?
People have created this stigma that accounting is just sitting in front of a computer all day, playing with spreadsheets. We do not blame them; that is how the accounts are portrayed in the media. But the fact is that accounting is boring only for people who are repulsed by numbers and would rather do something else. Accounting is an excellent profession for someone interested in the world of numbers. It is true that accounting involves a lot of numerical skills, but so do other significant domains, such as chemical and physical. If you like finding needles in haystacks and tackling challenges, you are in the right field.
You will likely become a great accountant if you have the following qualities.
- Have a knack for problem-solving.
- Tend to constantly come up with new ideas.
- Are well-organised.
- Anticipate problems beforehand.
- Have a passion for saving money.
- Enjoy ‘going into the details.’
- Are a tech enthusiast.
- Very responsible and trustworthy.
- Have a creative mind.
- Keen to analyse information.
- Possess a strong work ethic.
- Are a team player.
- Are loyal and reliable.
- Have awesome communication skills.
- Value professional integrity.
- Constitute a sense of accountability.
- Are efficient and adaptable.
- Love rules.
- Enjoy maths and are good at it.
Do You Need to Be Smart to Be an Accountant?
Yes, accounting requires a proactive approach and a lot of critical thinking. The field is not cut out for everyone because that do not have a natural affinity towards numbers cannot survive in this field. First of all, you need to be good at math, as it is the focal point. Accounting does not require advanced computation and equations, so you can do fine if you understand basic math. However, a great deal of comprehension ability is needed to understand the complex accounting bits. If you are tech-savvy, love details, and can look at the big picture, you have got nothing to worry about. Get a grip on basic mathematics and accounting terms and understand how to apply these concepts practically. However, respectable academic credentials are necessary to get ahead in this field because they demonstrate a certain level of cognitive prowess.
Yes, detail orientation and complex abilities are a significant part of this industry. But accounting really is not much more complex or challenging than other great fields of study that lead to promising opportunities.
As always, please remember I am an Accountant, but not your Accountant. In this post (and all of my others) I share information and oftentimes give anecdotes about what has worked well for me. However, I do not know your personal financial situation and so do not offer individual financial advice. If you are unsure of a particular financial subject, please hire a qualified financial advisor to guide you.
This article has been written by Luke Girling, ACA – a qualified Accountant and personal finance enthusiast in the UK. Please visit my ‘About‘ page for more information. To verify my ACA credentials – please search for my name at the ICAEW member finder. To get in touch with questions or ideas for future posts, please comment below or contact me here.