An accounting analyst is responsible for supporting the accounting operations of an organization, analyzing financial transactions and financial statements, and resolving account discrepancies. Accounting analysts interpret financial data by consolidating account transactions, performing account reconciliation, and managing account receivables. They also assist in preparing and releasing invoices, issuing billing statements, and creating comprehensive financial reports on the company's budget and expenses. An accounting analyst must have excellent knowledge of the accounting principles and disciplines, as well as extensive analytical and communication skills to perform duties and meet deadlines under minimal supervision.

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Accounting Analyst Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real accounting analyst resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Manage and process all ACH, EFT and wire transfer transactions daily (debit or credits).
  • Manage reconciling monthly discrepancies between ERP transfers.
  • Manage budget submissions by subsidiaries in Europe/AFNE region in Hyperion.
  • Establish investment objectives to efficiently manage IPO proceeds within state risk parameters.
  • Maintain accounting controls by following GAAP and internal accounting policies; maintain financial security by following internal controls.
  • Review and approve monthly general ledger and bank account reconciliations for special condition accounts to ensure procedural consistency and compliance.
  • Advise senior executives and trustees as they provide oversight and governance to organization.
  • Serve as liaison with retain CPA firm to ensure a clean and timely year-end audit.
  • Perform cash disbursement, reconciliation of cash & bank statements, and updating QuickBooks records.
  • Serve as mentor/manager to senior level staff accountants and CPA's and oversee all company operations.
  • Direct oversight of a 9 team accounts payable section responsible for paying all accounts for USMTM requirements.
  • Analyze costs from domestic and international raw material shipments and identify variations with costs already submit in ERP system.
  • Review, code and input accounts payable transactions into QuickBooks and process payment; ACH, wire transfers and checks.
  • Review Hyperion reports for integrity issues for assign companies.
  • Monitor open receipts and unmatch invoice reports daily to verify proper transactions.

Accounting Analyst Job Description

Perhaps the hardest question to answer when deciding on a career as an accounting analyst is "should I become an accounting analyst?" You might find this info to be helpful. When compared to other jobs, accounting analyst careers are projected to have a growth rate described as "as fast as average" at 6% from 2018 through 2028. This is in accordance with the Bureau of Labor Statistics. What's more, is that the projected number of opportunities that are predicted to become available for a accounting analyst by 2028 is 90,700.

On average, the accounting analyst annual salary is $58,399 per year, which translates to $28.08 an hour. Generally speaking, accounting analysts earn anywhere from $42,000 to $79,000 a year, which means that the top-earning accounting analysts make $45,000 more than the ones at the lower end of the spectrum.

As is the case with most jobs, it takes work to become an accounting analyst. Sometimes people change their minds about their career after working in the profession. That's why we looked into some other professions that might help you find your next opportunity. These professions include a finance analyst/accountant, corporate accountant, general accountant, and staff accountant.

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Accounting Analyst Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 12% of Accounting Analysts are proficient in Reconciliations, Customer Service, and Account Reconciliations. They’re also known for soft skills such as Analytical skills, Communication skills, and Organizational skills.

We break down the percentage of Accounting Analysts that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Reconciliations, 12%

    Reviewed and approved monthly general ledger and bank account reconciliations for special condition accounts to ensure procedural consistency and compliance.

  • Customer Service, 7%

    Participated in the development and implementation of a successful initiative to improve cash, credit/collection, and customer service processes.

  • Account Reconciliations, 6%

    Completed month-end journals and reports, account reconciliations, warehouse audits, monthly inventory analysis report and corresponding presentation to management.

  • GAAP, 5%

    Headed contract management between sub-contractors and the bank, ensured expenditures/revenues were accounted for properly using GAAP and contractual agreed procedures.

  • Strong Analytical, 4%

    Utilized strong analytical and Microsoft Excel skills that assisted project leaders in generating spreadsheets to reconcile GL differences.

  • Payroll, 4%

    Established and enforced policies and procedures to ensure compliance with regulations relating to payroll operations and control.

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"reconciliations," "customer service," and "account reconciliations" aren't the only skills we found accounting analysts list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of accounting analyst responsibilities that we found, including:

  • Analytical skills can be considered to be the most important personality trait for an accounting analyst to have. According to a accounting analyst resume, "accountants and auditors must be able to identify issues in documentation and suggest solutions" accounting analysts are able to use analytical skills in the following example we gathered from a resume: "analyzed costs from domestic and international raw material shipments and identified variations with costs already submitted in erp system. "
  • While it may not be the most important skill, we found that many accounting analyst duties rely on communication skills. This example from a accounting analyst explains why: "accountants and auditors must be able to listen carefully to facts and concerns from clients, managers, and others." This resume example is just one of many ways accounting analysts are able to utilize communication skills: "analyze daily and monthly fund reconciliations requiring intensive research and communication with investment managers and custodians. "
  • Organizational skills is also an important skill for accounting analysts to have. This example of how accounting analysts use this skill comes from a accounting analyst resume, "strong organizational skills are important for accountants and auditors, who often work with a range of financial documents for a variety of clients." Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "prepared reports and purchased 1300+ parts from 120 vendors, demonstrating excellent organizational skills. "
  • A thorough review of lots of resumes revealed to us that "detail oriented" is important to completing accounting analyst responsibilities. This resume example shows just one way accounting analysts use this skill: "accountants and auditors must pay attention to detail when compiling and examining documentation." Here's an example of how this skill is used from a resume that represents typical accounting analyst tasks: "automated areas of monthly processes related to payroll entry, p&l; reports and fixed asset detail. "
  • Yet another important skill that an accounting analyst must demonstrate is "math skills." Accountants and auditors must be able to analyze, compare, and interpret facts and figures, although complex math skills are not necessary. This is clearly demonstrated in this example from an accounting analyst who stated: "audit expense reports answering phones team work customer service math calculations following policies for each client problem solving"
  • See the full list of accounting analyst skills.

    We've found that 73.9% of accounting analysts have earned a bachelor's degree. Furthermore, 11.3% earned their master's degrees before becoming an accounting analyst. While it's true that most accounting analysts have a college degree, it's generally possible to become one with only a high school degree. In fact, one out of every nine accounting analysts did not spend the extra money to attend college.

    Those accounting analysts who do attend college, typically earn either a accounting degree or a business degree. Less commonly earned degrees for accounting analysts include a finance degree or a economics degree.

    When you're ready to become an accounting analyst, you might wonder which companies hire accounting analysts. According to our research through accounting analyst resumes, accounting analysts are mostly hired by Robert Half, BNY Mellon, and Armstrong World Industries. Now is a good time to apply as Robert Half has 40 accounting analysts job openings, and there are 16 at BNY Mellon and 15 at Armstrong World Industries.

    But if you're interested in companies where you might earn a high salary, accounting analysts tend to earn the biggest salaries at Google, The Citadel, and Apollo Global Management. Take Google for example. The median accounting analyst salary is $116,269. At The Citadel, accounting analysts earn an average of $103,634, while the average at Apollo Global Management is $102,294. You should take into consideration how difficult it might be to secure a job with one of these companies.

    View more details on accounting analyst salaries across the United States.

    If you earned a degree from the top 100 educational institutions in the United States, you might want to take a look at BNY Mellon, Robert Half, and Fidelity Investments. These three companies have hired a significant number of accounting analysts from these institutions.

    The industries that accounting analysts fulfill the most roles in are the finance and professional industries. But the highest accounting analyst annual salary is in the finance industry, averaging $66,550. In the technology industry they make $63,380 and average about $62,801 in the energy industry. In conclusion, accounting analysts who work in the finance industry earn a 32.5% higher salary than accounting analysts in the hospitality industry.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious accounting analysts are:

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    What Finance Analyst/Accountants Do

    In a company setting, a finance analyst/accountant is in charge of handling and monitoring financial activities, ensuring efficiency and accuracy. Their responsibilities revolve around preparing financial reports, performing audits and risk assessments, and identifying any errors and inconsistencies, resolving them promptly and efficiently. They also conduct research and analysis to identify new business opportunities, evaluate the existing procedures to determine its strengths and weaknesses, and recommend solutions to optimize operations for financial growth. Furthermore, as a finance analyst/accountant, it is essential to uphold the company's policies and regulations, including its vision and mission.

    In this section, we compare the average accounting analyst annual salary with that of a finance analyst/accountant. Typically, finance analyst/accountants earn a $4,576 higher salary than accounting analysts earn annually.

    While their salaries may differ, one common ground between accounting analysts and finance analyst/accountants are a few of the skills required in each craft. In both careers, employees bring forth skills like reconciliations, account reconciliations, and gaap.

    There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, an accounting analyst responsibilities require skills like "customer service," "work ethic," "excellent interpersonal," and "hyperion." Meanwhile a typical finance analyst/accountant has skills in areas such as "cpa," "income statement," "financial models," and "data analysis." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

    Finance analyst/accountants really shine in the finance industry with an average salary of $78,897. Whereas accounting analysts tend to make the most money in the finance industry with an average salary of $66,550.

    Finance analyst/accountants tend to reach similar levels of education than accounting analysts. In fact, finance analyst/accountants are 3.2% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.1% less likely to have a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Corporate Accountant?

    A corporate accountant is a professional who prepares financial statements and maintains financial records of an organization to ensure that they comply with laws, regulations, and the organization's policies. Corporate accountants are required to analyze financial statements to help executives make financial decisions for the organization. They must collect ledgers and financial reports from divisional offices and prepare corporate financial statements for executives. Corporate accountants must also prepare budgets to allocate funds for spending for each department.

    Next up, we have the corporate accountant profession to look over. This career brings along a higher average salary when compared to an accounting analyst annual salary. In fact, corporate accountants salary difference is $5,901 higher than the salary of accounting analysts per year.

    While the salary may be different for these job positions, there is one similarity and that's a few of the skills needed to perform certain duties. We used info from lots of resumes to find that both accounting analysts and corporate accountants are known to have skills such as "reconciliations," "account reconciliations," and "gaap. "

    But both careers also use different skills, according to real accounting analyst resumes. While accounting analyst responsibilities can utilize skills like "customer service," "payroll," "pivot tables," and "work ethic," some corporate accountants use skills like "cpa," "real estate," "payroll taxes," and "income statement."

    On average, corporate accountants earn a higher salary than accounting analysts. There are industries that support higher salaries in each profession respectively. Interestingly enough, corporate accountants earn the most pay in the finance industry with an average salary of $71,156. Whereas, accounting analysts have higher paychecks in the finance industry where they earn an average of $66,550.

    When it comes to the differences in education between the two professions, corporate accountants tend to reach similar levels of education than accounting analysts. In fact, they're 1.2% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.1% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a General Accountant Compares

    A general accountant is responsible for evaluating account statements, conducting data analysis with financial transactions, and generating reports on revenues, expenses, and sales forecasting. These accountants manage discrepancies on the company and clients' profiles, including bank reconciliations and processing of account receivables and payables. They also handle the release of invoices and petty cash, analyzing balance sheets, and updating accurate financial information on the database. A general accountant must have excellent analytical skills, as well as extensive knowledge of the accounting principles and disciplines.

    The third profession we take a look at is general accountant. On an average scale, these workers bring in lower salaries than accounting analysts. In fact, they make a $3,356 lower salary per year.

    While looking through the resumes of several accounting analysts and general accountants we discovered that both professions have similar skills. These similarities include skills such as "reconciliations," "account reconciliations," and "gaap," but they differ when it comes to other required skills.

    Some important key differences between the two careers are a few of the skills necessary to fulfill responsibilities. Some examples from accounting analyst resumes include skills like "customer service," "strong analytical," "payroll," and "pivot tables," whereas a general accountant might be skilled in "cash handling," "payroll taxes," "cpa," and "income statement. "

    General accountants make a very good living in the automotive industry with an average annual salary of $63,004. Whereas accounting analysts are paid the highest salary in the finance industry with the average being $66,550.

    General accountants are known to earn similar educational levels when compared to accounting analysts. Additionally, they're 0.9% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.0% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Staff Accountant

    Staff accountants are employees who are part of the company's accounting department. They are usually certified public accountants (CPAs). Staff accountants should be familiar with accounting tasks. Previous accounting experiences play a huge advantage in their success. They perform a variety of accounting responsibilities such as information verification and analysis, financial report preparation and presentation, financial account reconciliation, billing and payment receiving activities, vendor database management, and invoice processing requirements. They should also know how to do bookkeeping. Staff accountants should have good communication skills, analytical skills, and decision-making skills. They should also be organized and trustworthy since they will be handling confidential information.

    Staff accountants tend to earn a lower pay than accounting analysts by about $4,183 per year.

    According to resumes from both accounting analysts and staff accountants, some of the skills necessary to complete the responsibilities of each role are similar. These skills include "reconciliations," "account reconciliations," and "gaap. "

    Each job requires different skills like "customer service," "payroll," "pivot tables," and "process improvement," which might show up on an accounting analyst resume. Whereas staff accountant might include skills like "cpa," "payroll tax returns," "income statement," and "income tax returns."

    In general, staff accountants make a higher salary in the government industry with an average of $57,168. The highest accounting analyst annual salary stems from the finance industry.

    The average resume of staff accountants showed that they earn similar levels of education to accounting analysts. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 1.0% less. Additionally, they're less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 0.1%.