Finance and accounting are highly sought-after fields due to the broad range of opportunities and immense career growth they offer. Job opportunities in the finance and accounting sector include Bank Clerk, Accountant, Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Investment Consultant, Accounts Payable Clerk, and Budget Analyst, among other opportunities. If you’re planning on pursuing any of these fields or achieving further growth in them, you must be aware of how challenging the process is and how much competition you’ll face along the way.
Landing and sustaining an opportunity or role in finance and accounting can be quite a struggle considering the high influx of applicants applying for the same position with limited vacancies. These opportunities and roles require specific skill sets and qualifications, which develop over time through different experiences. To prosper and establish a solid career, you need to put in the hard work and effort so that you can set the bar high.
Do not feel discouraged or overwhelmed, though; here are some tips for a successful career in finance and accounting.
- MBA in Accounting Degree
Educational qualification is necessary to help you advance in your career. If you’re wondering whether getting an MBA in accounting degree is worth it, then the answer is yes – absolutely! It is the surest way to open various doors for your business career to flourish. The three ways to boost your career with an MBA in accounting degree include gaining expertise in managerial accounting, applying valuation models, and availing executive opportunities under the CFO. In essence, an MBA can help you significantly expand your skillset and provide you with massive career-based growth opportunities.
- Acquire Internship Experience
There are various diverse opportunities to choose from within the finance and accounting sector. Internships can help you gain practical experience and explore the different career prospects available. They can also help you build your professional network as you’ll be working alongside several experts. Make sure to sign up for multiple internships across various finance and accounting roles so that you can make a confident choice regarding your career. A diverse range of internships on your resume can also help your profile stand out for recruiters.
- Find Good Mentors
It is not easy to start a career in finance or accounting. It would help if you get in touch with a mentor before applying for jobs, so you can clear any ambiguities and narrow down options regarding your career prospects. You might be concerned about where to find a mentor in the first place. A mentor could be anyone. Your supervisor during one of your prior internships, a professor at your college, or it could even be someone whose profile resonated with you on LinkedIn.
A good mentor can help you develop your leadership skills and advance your career by giving you advice based on their first-hand experience. They can also help you build strong connections and networks to help you achieve growth and better opportunities.
- Expand Your Skillset
You need to build a wide range of skills to excel in your finance and accounting career. It is essential to work on soft and hard skills for a successful career in finance and accounting. Before knowing about profits, you need to know more about bankruptcy and what a consumer proposal is. Make sure to build your interpersonal skills to effectively communicate with your co-workers, higher-ups, and business partners. Simply being proficient in MS Excel is no longer sufficient for success in this career. It would help if you kept up with the latest data analytics tools such as SQL, Python, and R. These will help you provide better cash flow analysis, sales predictions, and profitability insights.
- Build Your Professional Network
Make sure to keep your online professional presence on websites such as LinkedIn up-to-date. This way you can build a strong network and gain valuable insights and opportunities to grow in your career. Joining finance and accounting-based career communities and attending seminars in your vicinity can help you interact with like-minded individuals and result in meaningful professional connections. Staying active on professional networking sites can also help recruiters find you and present you with better career opportunities.
- Earn Relevant Certifications
Your formal education and degree aside, additional certifications and qualifications play a vital role in helping you advance in your career. Some of the top accounting and finance certifications include Chartered Certified Accountant (ACCA), Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Financial Planner (CFP), and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), among several others. Most times, you don’t have to worry about the cost of the certifications either as companies usually reimburse their employees either partially or fully for successfully gaining the certification.
- Broaden Your Knowledge
To maintain strong competition, you need to be well-versed and up-to-date with all the latest advancements, trends, and necessary qualifications in the finance and accounting sector. Make sure to take courses on finance or accounting-based subjects, economics and business, and data analytics. This will help you pose as a strong candidate and advance quickly in your career. You can take courses from the comfort of your homes through authentic websites online such as LinkedIn or Coursera. Make the best of all your surrounding resources to broaden your knowledge to succeed in your career.
It is not easy to kick-start a career in finance or accounting unless you’re willing to put in the effort to make yourself stand out. The path to a successful career may seem stressful and overwhelming. There’s no doubt that you’ll meet massive competition at every stop along the way, but once you’ve set your mind to embark on it and stay steadfast, then there’s only much to gain.
Make sure to consider all options, including getting an MBA in accounting or finance, as that’s the most certain way to help you achieve wonders in your career. Also, take full advantage of the online world to equip yourself with knowledge, certifications, qualifications, and skills that will help you advance in your career. Remember, you don’t need to rush; maintain a slow and steady pace to achieve results to help you achieve your goals.