An accounts payable clerk is responsible for supporting the accounting department by performing clerical duties to file financial reports timely and accurately. Accounts payable clerks manage and verify invoices documents, reconcile balance spreadsheets, process payments for suppliers and vendors, resolve billing discrepancies, confirm and post account statements, record outstanding credits, and maintain an organized record of transactions. An accounts payable clerk must have excellent knowledge of the accounting principles to deliver high-quality services and help the business minimize excessive financial loss.

Accounts Payable Clerk Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real accounts payable clerk resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Prepare batch check runs, wire transfers and ACH (automate clearing house) transactions clear for accounting reconciliation.
  • Analyze information and options by developing spreadsheet reports; verifying balance sheet and income statement accuracy daily.
  • Prepare internal financial account reconciliation with accurate and appropriate recording and analysis of balance sheet and income statement.
  • Assist with the bi-monthly payroll process; acquire W-2s and collect and distribute paychecks.
  • Process semi-monthly payroll (calculation of retroactive payments, commissions, bonuses & new hires through ADP PayExpert).
  • Maintain adherence to corporate, accounting and GAAP standards, addressed issues from employees and vendors regarding accounts payable.
  • Input all new vendor setup information, as well as processing W9 and net payment information necessary for vendor setup.
  • Print, review, research, edit, code and batch invoices for processing via the various ERP financial systems.
  • Play a key role in developing the current procedures and processes used to set up vendors in their ERP system.
  • Work closely with the CPA providing financial statements request, ensuring capital, assets, and revenue are accurately report.
Accounts Payable Clerk Traits
Computer skills involves understanding how to operate a computer, as well as computer programs and applications.
Detail oriented involves being extremely mindful and observant of all details.
Integrity involves honesty and a high regard of morals.

Accounts Payable Clerk Job Description

When it comes to understanding what an accounts payable clerk does, you may be wondering, "should I become an accounts payable clerk?" The data included in this section may help you decide. Compared to other jobs, accounts payable clerks have a growth rate described as "decline" at -4% between the years 2018 - 2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In fact, the number of accounts payable clerk opportunities that are predicted to open up by 2028 is -65,800.

On average, the accounts payable clerk annual salary is $37,865 per year, which translates to $18.2 an hour. Generally speaking, accounts payable clerks earn anywhere from $29,000 to $48,000 a year, which means that the top-earning accounts payable clerks make $19,000 more than the ones at the lower end of the spectrum.

It's hard work to become an accounts payable clerk, but even the most dedicated employees consider switching careers from time to time. Whether you're interested in a more challenging position or just looking for a fresh start, we've compiled extensive information on becoming a bookkeeper, clerk, accounting technician, and accounting administrator.

Accounts Payable Clerk Jobs You Might Like

Accounts Payable Clerk Resume Examples

Accounts Payable Clerk Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 17% of Accounts Payable Clerks are proficient in Vendor Invoices, Customer Service, and General Ledger Accounts. They’re also known for soft skills such as Computer skills, Detail oriented, and Integrity.

We break down the percentage of Accounts Payable Clerks that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Vendor Invoices, 17%

    Verify vendor invoices with corresponding purchase orders and receiving records or by obtaining other supporting documents as necessary.

  • Customer Service, 10%

    Perform register sales transactions quickly and accurately in accordance with established cash control procedures and Customer Service guidelines.

  • General Ledger Accounts, 8%

    Posted and verified basic financial information used to produce and maintain financial and statistical documents for accounts payable and accounts receivables.

  • Data Entry, 8%

    Conducted training for staff on vendor management, data entry and funding, ensuring consistent operations and increasing productivity.

  • Purchase Orders, 6%

    Reconcile financial information regarding contracts time and leave balance, purchase orders and authority division budget allowances.

  • Expense Reports, 6%

    Prepare expense reports and ensure appropriate reimbursement, review and process travel expense vouchers for accountability and proper authorization.

Some of the skills we found on accounts payable clerk resumes included "vendor invoices," "customer service," and "general ledger accounts." We have detailed the most important accounts payable clerk responsibilities below.

  • The most important skills for an accounts payable clerk to have in this position are computer skills. In this excerpt that we gathered from a accounts payable clerk resume, you'll understand why: "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks need to be comfortable using computer spreadsheets and bookkeeping software." According to resumes we found, computer skills can be used by a accounts payable clerk in order to "generated computerized and manual checks. "
  • Another commonly found skill for being able to perform accounts payable clerk duties is the following: detail oriented. According to a accounts payable clerk resume, "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks are responsible for producing accurate financial records." Check out this example of how accounts payable clerks use detail oriented: "maintain detailed records of vendor activity, w-9 and insurance records. "
  • Accounts payable clerks are also known for integrity, which can be critical when it comes to performing their duties. An example of why this skill is important is shown by this snippet that we found in a accounts payable clerk resume: "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks have control of an organization’s financial documentation, which they must use properly and keep confidential" We also found this resume example that details how this skill is put to the test: "placed in a position of high trust and accountability as liaison between lawyers and hr to ensure distribution of monetary needs. "
  • In order for certain accounts payable clerk responsibilities to be completed, the job requires the skill "math skills." According to an accounts payable clerk resume, "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks deal with numbers daily and should be comfortable with basic arithmetic." As an example, this snippet was taken directly from a resume about how this skill applies: "process all check request in a timely manner; check mathematical computations; verify all attached supporting documentation. "
  • See the full list of accounts payable clerk skills.

    We've found that 46.3% of accounts payable clerks have earned a bachelor's degree. Furthermore, 4.4% earned their master's degrees before becoming an accounts payable clerk. While it's true that most accounts payable clerks have a college degree, it's generally possible to become one with only a high school degree. In fact, one out of every five accounts payable clerks did not spend the extra money to attend college.

    Those accounts payable clerks who do attend college, typically earn either a accounting degree or a business degree. Less commonly earned degrees for accounts payable clerks include a finance degree or a general studies degree.

    Once you've obtained the level of education you're comfortable with, you might start applying to companies to become an accounts payable clerk. We've found that most accounts payable clerk resumes include experience from Robert Half International, Aerotek, and Kforce. Of recent, Robert Half International had 497 positions open for accounts payable clerks. Meanwhile, there are 78 job openings at Aerotek and 38 at Kforce.

    Since salary is important to some accounts payable clerks, it's good to note that they are figured to earn the highest salaries at McKinsey & Company, IZEA Worldwide, and Arrow Electronics. If you were to take a closer look at McKinsey & Company, you'd find that the average accounts payable clerk salary is $49,366. Then at IZEA Worldwide, accounts payable clerks receive an average salary of $48,181, while the salary at Arrow Electronics is $47,221.

    View more details on accounts payable clerk salaries across the United States.

    The industries that accounts payable clerks fulfill the most roles in are the retail and manufacturing industries. But the highest accounts payable clerk annual salary is in the health care industry, averaging $42,038. In the technology industry they make $40,447 and average about $40,293 in the retail industry. In conclusion, accounts payable clerks who work in the health care industry earn a 5.7% higher salary than accounts payable clerks in the hospitality industry.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious accounts payable clerks are:

      What Bookkeepers Do

      Bookkeepers are employees who are in charge of the company's general ledger. They are well-versed in basic accounting principles, and they apply these in their work. Bookkeepers manage the entry of items in the general ledger, assign items into their proper categories, and ensure that the entries are balanced. They also act as auditors by checking the accuracy and veracity of the receipts or vouchers in their possession before entering them into the system. Bookkeepers ensure that their files are up to date and free of errors.

      In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take bookkeeper for example. On average, the bookkeepers annual salary is $2,266 higher than what accounts payable clerks make on average every year.

      Even though accounts payable clerks and bookkeepers have vast differences in their careers, a few of the skills required to do both jobs are similar. For example, both careers require vendor invoices, customer service, and general ledger accounts in the day-to-day roles.

      There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, an accounts payable clerk responsibilities require skills like "high volume," "special projects," "payable transactions," and "appropriate documentation." Meanwhile a typical bookkeeper has skills in areas such as "financial transactions," "tax returns," "income," and "balance sheet." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

      Bookkeepers really shine in the professional industry with an average salary of $40,051. Whereas accounts payable clerks tend to make the most money in the health care industry with an average salary of $42,038.

      The education levels that bookkeepers earn is a bit different than that of accounts payable clerks. In particular, bookkeepers are 1.1% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree than an accounts payable clerk. Additionally, they're 0.0% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

      What Are The Duties Of a Clerk?

      Clerks are responsible for many of the general administrative tasks in the office. They are in charge of manning office telephone lines, managing incoming and outgoing mails, filing paperwork and other needed records, scheduling and documenting meetings, typing out documents when needed, disseminating memos and other official announcements, and keeping an inventory of office equipment and supplies. Clerks should have good office skills, communication skills, business writing skills, and time management skills. They should also be able to treat any document or paperwork they handle with confidentiality.

      Next up, we have the clerk profession to look over. This career brings along a lower average salary when compared to an accounts payable clerk annual salary. In fact, clerks salary difference is $8,121 lower than the salary of accounts payable clerks per year.

      A similarity between the two careers of accounts payable clerks and clerks are a few of the skills associated with both roles. We used resumes from both professions to find that both use skills like "customer service," "data entry," and "high volume. "

      While some skills are similar in these professions, other skills aren't so similar. For example, several resumes showed us that accounts payable clerk responsibilities requires skills like "vendor invoices," "general ledger accounts," "purchase orders," and "expense reports." But a clerk might use skills, such as, "communication," "pos," "sales floor," and "customer orders."

      It's been discovered that clerks earn lower salaries compared to accounts payable clerks, but we wanted to find out where clerks earned the most pay. The answer? The retail industry. The average salary in the industry is $32,949. Additionally, accounts payable clerks earn the highest paychecks in the health care with an average salary of $42,038.

      On the topic of education, clerks earn similar levels of education than accounts payable clerks. In general, they're 3.9% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

      How an Accounting Technician Compares

      An accounting technician is responsible for evaluating financial information procedures to support accounting and taxation tasks, verifying the accuracy of account statements for the reference of accountants. Accounting technicians manage the payroll processes, generate invoices, perform account reconciliations, analyze account receivables, prepare budget reports, and monitor the company's financial transactions. Accounting technicians should always adhere to taxation legislation, comply with accounting disciplines, and coordinate with the account management for any findings and concerns, requiring them to have excellent communication and analytical skills.

      The accounting technician profession generally makes a higher amount of money when compared to the average salary of accounts payable clerks. The difference in salaries is accounting technicians making $2,246 higher than accounts payable clerks.

      While looking through the resumes of several accounts payable clerks and accounting technicians we discovered that both professions have similar skills. These similarities include skills such as "vendor invoices," "customer service," and "general ledger accounts," 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 accounts payable clerk resumes include skills like "high volume," "company policies," "special projects," and "payable transactions," whereas an accounting technician might be skilled in "procedures," "travel vouchers," "financial transactions," and "subsidiary accounts. "

      Additionally, accounting technicians earn a higher salary in the government industry compared to other industries. In this industry, they receive an average salary of $36,542. Additionally, accounts payable clerks earn an average salary of $42,038 in the health care industry.

      Accounting technicians typically study at higher levels compared with accounts payable clerks. For example, they're 5.1% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

      Description Of an Accounting Administrator

      An accounting administrator is responsible for reviewing and analyzing account statements, managing deposits, and resolving bank discrepancies and financial disputes. Accounting administrators handle the efficient and accurate cash flow within an organization, including payroll release and filing of petty cash. They maintain an organized record of payments and billing statements for reference and audit purposes to generate reports for the management. An accounting administrator must have extensive knowledge of the accounting principles, as well as excellent communication and analytical skills to perform duties effectively, even under minimal supervision.

      Now, we'll look at accounting administrators, who generally average a higher pay when compared to accounts payable clerks annual salary. In fact, the difference is about $2,448 per year.

      While their salaries may vary, accounts payable clerks and accounting administrators both use similar skills to perform their jobs. Resumes from both professions include skills like "vendor invoices," "customer service," and "general ledger accounts. "

      Each job requires different skills like "special projects," "payable transactions," "hr," and "appropriate documentation," which might show up on an accounts payable clerk resume. Whereas accounting administrator might include skills like "office procedures," "balance sheet," "customer payments," and "cpa."

      Accounting administrators earn a higher salary in the automotive industry with an average of $50,236. Whereas, accounts payable clerks earn the highest salary in the health care industry.

      The average resume of accounting administrators showed that they earn similar levels of education to accounts payable clerks. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 3.9% more. Additionally, they're more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 0.3%.