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Become A Senior Accounts Payable Specialist

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Working As A Senior Accounts Payable Specialist

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Processing Information
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $53,018

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Accounts Payable Specialist Do

Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks produce financial records for organizations. They record financial transactions, update statements, and check financial records for accuracy.

Duties

Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks typically do the following:

  • Use bookkeeping software, online spreadsheets, and databases
  • Enter (post) financial transactions into the appropriate computer software
  • Receive and record cash, checks, and vouchers
  • Put costs (debits) and income (credits) into the software, assigning each to an appropriate account
  • Produce reports, such as balance sheets (costs compared with income), income statements, and totals by account
  • Check for accuracy in figures, postings, and reports
  • Reconcile or note and report any differences they find in the records

The records that bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks work with include expenditures (money spent), receipts (money that comes in), accounts payable (bills to be paid), accounts receivable (invoices, or what other people owe the organization), and profit and loss (a report that shows the organization’s financial health).

Workers in this occupation have a wide range of tasks. Some are full-charge bookkeeping clerks who maintain an entire organization’s books. Others are accounting clerks who handle specific tasks.

These clerks use basic mathematics (adding, subtracting) throughout the day.

Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks use specialized computer accounting software, spreadsheets, and databases to enter information from receipts or bills. They must be comfortable using computers to record and calculate data.

The widespread use of computers also has enabled bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks to take on additional responsibilities, such as payroll, billing, purchasing (buying), and keeping track of overdue bills. Many of these functions require clerks to communicate with clients.

Bookkeeping clerks, also known as bookkeepers, often are responsible for some or all of an organization’s accounts, known as the general ledger. They record all transactions and post debits (costs) and credits (income).

They also produce financial statements and other reports for supervisors and managers. Bookkeepers prepare bank deposits by compiling data from cashiers, verifying receipts, and sending cash, checks, or other forms of payment to the bank.

In addition, they may handle payroll, make purchases, prepare invoices, and keep track of overdue accounts.

Accounting clerks typically work for larger companies and have more specialized tasks. Their titles, such as accounts payable clerk or accounts receivable clerk, often reflect the type of accounting they do.

The responsibilities of accounting clerks frequently vary by level of experience. Entry-level accounting clerks may post details of transactions (including date, type, and amount), add up accounts, and determine interest charges. They also may monitor loans and accounts to ensure that payments are up to date.

More advanced accounting clerks may add and balance billing vouchers, ensure that account data are complete and accurate, and code documents according to an organization’s procedures.

Auditing clerks check figures, postings, and documents to ensure that they are mathematically accurate and properly coded. They also correct or note errors for accountants or other workers to fix.

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How To Become A Senior Accounts Payable Specialist

Most bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks need some postsecondary education and also learn some of their skills on the job. They must have basic math and computer skills, including knowledge of spreadsheets and bookkeeping software.

Education

Employers generally require bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks to have some postsecondary education, particularly coursework in accounting. However, some candidates can be hired with just a high school diploma.

Training

Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks usually get on-the-job training. Under the guidance of a supervisor or another experienced employee, new clerks learn how to do their tasks, including double-entry bookkeeping. In double-entry bookkeeping, each transaction is entered twice, once as a debit (cost) and once as a credit (income), to ensure that all accounts are balanced.

Some formal classroom training also may be necessary, such as training in specialized computer software. This on-the-job training typically takes around 6 months.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Some bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks become certified. For those who do not have postsecondary education, certification is a particularly useful way to gain expertise in the field. The Certified Bookkeeper (CB) designation, awarded by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers, shows that those who have earned it have the skills and knowledge needed to carry out all bookkeeping tasks, including overseeing payroll and balancing accounts, according to accepted accounting procedures.

For certification, candidates must have at least 2 years of full-time bookkeeping experience or equivalent part-time work, pass a four-part exam, and adhere to a code of ethics.

The National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers also offers certification. The Uniform Bookkeeper Certification Examination is an online test with 50 multiple-choice questions. Test takers must answer 75 percent of the questions correctly to pass the exam.

Advancement

With appropriate experience and education, some bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks may become accountants or auditors.

Important Qualities

Computer skills. Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks need to be comfortable using computer spreadsheets and bookkeeping software.

Detail oriented. These clerks are responsible for producing accurate financial records. They must pay attention to detail in order to avoid making errors and recognize errors that others have made.

Integrity. Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks have control of an organization’s financial documentation, which they must use properly and keep confidential. It is vital that they keep records transparent and guard against misappropriating an organization’s funds.

Math skills. Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks deal with numbers daily and should be comfortable with basic arithmetic.

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Senior Accounts Payable Specialist Jobs

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Senior Accounts Payable Specialist Career Paths

Senior Accounts Payable Specialist
Accountant Senior Accountant Accounting Manager
Accounting Director
11 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Supervisor Accounts Payable Manager
Accounting Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Manager Bookkeeper Accounts Receivable Specialist
Accounts Receivable Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Bookkeeper Credit Analyst Credit Manager
Accounts Receivable/Credit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Supervisor Accountant Accounting Manager
Assistant Controller
6 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Lead Staff Accountant Senior Auditor
Audit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Analyst Case Manager Unit Manager
Collections Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Manager Accounting Manager Controller
Controller/Office Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Staff Accountant Accounting Manager Controller
Corporate Controller
11 Yearsyrs
Analyst Accounts Receivable Specialist Accounts Receivable Supervisor
Credit Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Account Payables Analyst Staff Accountant Controller
Finance Controller
9 Yearsyrs
Accountant Payroll Administrator Human Resources Coordinator
Human Resources Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Staff Accountant Finance Analyst Senior Finance Analyst
Manager Finance Planning And Analysis
8 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Lead Accounts Payable Supervisor Office Manager
Office Manager Of Human Resources
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Accountant Tax Preparer Staff Accountant
Payroll Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Bookkeeper Accounts Payable Clerk Payroll Specialist
Payroll/Human Resource Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Account Payables Analyst Accountant Accounting Manager
Plant Controller
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Accountant Business Manager Billing Manager
Revenue Manager
8 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Senior Accounts Payable Specialist?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Top Employers Before
Accountant 3.6%
Top Employers After
Accountant 6.2%
Bookkeeper 2.8%
Analyst 2.0%

Do you work as a Senior Accounts Payable Specialist?

Senior Accounts Payable Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

82.9%

Male

15.4%

Unknown

1.7%
Ethnicity

White

55.2%

Hispanic or Latino

18.4%

Black or African American

11.6%

Asian

10.4%

Unknown

4.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0%

Hindi

11.1%

Italian

11.1%

Hawaiian

5.6%

French

5.6%

Amharic

5.6%

Urdu

5.6%

Mandarin

5.6%
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Senior Accounts Payable Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

21.8%

Strayer University

12.6%

Houston Community College

5.7%

Ashford University

5.7%

University of Maryland - University College

4.6%

Irvine Valley College

4.6%

Eastern Michigan University

3.4%

San Jose State University

3.4%

Liberty University

3.4%

University of Houston

3.4%

Santa Ana College

3.4%

Colorado Technical University

3.4%

Santa Monica College

3.4%

Northern Virginia Community College

3.4%

Anne Arundel Community College

3.4%

Montgomery College

3.4%

Saint Leo University

3.4%

University of Nevada - Reno

2.3%

Northwest Missouri State University

2.3%

University of Massachusetts - Boston

2.3%
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Majors

Accounting

41.2%

Business

28.4%

Finance

4.8%

Management

3.1%

Liberal Arts

2.8%

Health Care Administration

2.3%

Education

2.3%

Psychology

1.7%

Social Work

1.7%

Human Resources Management

1.7%

General Studies

1.7%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.1%

Computer Science

1.1%

Computer Information Systems

1.1%

Marketing

1.1%

Information Technology

0.9%

Legal Support Services

0.9%

Real Estate

0.9%

Specialized Sales And Merchandising

0.6%

English

0.6%
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Degrees

Bachelors

38.7%

Other

22.7%

Associate

20.0%

Masters

9.1%

Certificate

7.1%

Diploma

2.0%

License

0.2%

Doctorate

0.2%
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Top Skills for A Senior Accounts Payable Specialist

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  1. Vendor Statements
  2. Expense Reports
  3. Purchase
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Resolved numerous customer service requests and vendor statements issues.
  • Audited expense reports for reimbursements.
  • Pursued prompt management approval and/or delivery confirmation for invoices, purchase orders and credit memos to ensure payment within vendor/invoice terms.
  • Develop internal control policies and procedures and monitor for compliance within department.
  • Analyzed accounts payable reports and produced weekly check runs averaging over 600 checks a week.

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