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Many businesses rely on staff accountants to handle the "math" of the business. But that's just a lazy way for saying you'll be in charge of handling the budget and tax requirements. Basically, any financial records will be prepared and examined by you.

Depending on the industry you're in, the majority of the year will be your "busy season." Some industries this may not apply and you'll only be required to work the normal 40-hour work week.

Typically, staff accountants need a bit of an education to find a job. And no, we're not talking about a high school degree. Most employers prefer you to have a bachelor's degree. Here's to learning more math!

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a staff accountant. For example, did you know that they make an average of $25.31 an hour? That's $52,650 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 90,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Staff Accountant Do

There are certain skills that many staff accountants have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, communication skills and detail oriented.

Learn more about what a Staff Accountant does

How To Become a Staff Accountant

If you're interested in becoming a staff accountant, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 76.1% of staff accountants have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 10.3% of staff accountants have master's degrees. Even though most staff accountants have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a staff accountant. When we researched the most common majors for a staff accountant, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on staff accountant resumes include master's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a staff accountant. In fact, many staff accountant jobs require experience in a role such as accountant. Meanwhile, many staff accountants also have previous career experience in roles such as accounts payable clerk or accounting clerk.

Staff Accountant Career Paths

Average Salary for a Staff Accountant

Staff Accountants in America make an average salary of $52,650 per year or $25 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $65,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $42,000 per year.
Average Staff Accountant Salary
$52,650 Yearly
$25.31 hourly
$42,000
10 %
$52,000
Median
$65,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Staff Accountant Education

Staff Accountant Majors

23.6 %
6.7 %

Staff Accountant Degrees

Bachelors

76.1 %

Associate

11.3 %

Masters

10.3 %

Top Colleges for Staff Accountants

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,808
Enrollment
13,990

5. Villanova University

Villanova, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,308
Enrollment
6,819

6. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

7. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

8. SUNY Farmingdale

Farmingdale, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,306
Enrollment
9,394

9. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

10. SUNY Stony Brook

Stony Brook, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,625
Enrollment
17,407

Top Skills For a Staff Accountant

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 21.0% of staff accountants listed general ledger accounts on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and communication skills are important as well.

  • General Ledger Accounts, 21.0%
  • Financial Statements, 13.2%
  • Special Projects, 8.1%
  • Gaap, 6.7%
  • Internal Audit, 5.5%
  • Other Skills, 45.5%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Staff Accountant Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Staff Accountant templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Staff Accountant resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Staff Accountant Demographics

Staff Accountant Gender Distribution

Female
Female
58%
Male
Male
42%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among staff accountants, 58.4% of them are women, while 41.6% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among staff accountants is White, which makes up 65.5% of all staff accountants.

  • The most common foreign language among staff accountants is Spanish at 36.6%.

Online Courses For Staff Accountant That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Financial Accounting Subsidiary Ledgers & Special Journals
udemy
4.8
(283)

Subsidiary ledgers for accounts receivable & accounts payable. Special Journals - Sales journal, purchases journal...

Financial Accounting Payroll
udemy
4.4
(889)

Payroll calculations - federal income tax, social security, Medicare - Payroll journal entries posted to ledger accounts...

Financial Accounting-Adjusting Entries & Financial Statement
udemy
4.4
(368)

Adjusting entry creation, posting adjusting entries to a worksheet, creating financial statements from the trial balance...

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Best States For a Staff Accountant

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a staff accountant. The best states for people in this position are New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. Staff accountants make the most in New York with an average salary of $63,624. Whereas in New Jersey and Massachusetts, they would average $61,981 and $57,406, respectively. While staff accountants would only make an average of $57,122 in Connecticut, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. District of Columbia

Total Staff Accountant Jobs:
409
Highest 10% Earn:
$82,000
Location Quotient:
1.42 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. New York

Total Staff Accountant Jobs:
2,424
Highest 10% Earn:
$79,000
Location Quotient:
1.1 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Massachusetts

Total Staff Accountant Jobs:
1,957
Highest 10% Earn:
$71,000
Location Quotient:
1.24 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Staff Accountants

How Do Staff Accountant Rate Their Jobs?

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4.0

Staff Accountant February 2020

4.0

Zippia Official LogoStaff Accountant February 2020

What do you like the most about working as Staff Accountant?

Reporting to a CPA Controller or CFO, always learning and not micromanaged. Treated as a professional always. Show More

What do you NOT like?

Business owners that do not know or understand compliance and GAAP, or the patience to follow the rules... generally common in small companies. Show More

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Top Staff Accountant Employers

Most Common Employers For Staff Accountant

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1AIG$63,860$30.7051
2BKD LLP$59,235$28.4850
3Ernst & Young$58,811$28.271,603
4Pwc$58,409$28.0853
5KPMG LLP$56,586$27.20127
6Moss Adams$56,336$27.0872
7Accounting Principals$52,718$25.3555
8The Coca-Cola Company$52,662$25.3261
9USI Insurance Services$52,650$25.3164
10Evolent Health$52,507$25.24103

Staff Accountant Videos

Becoming a Staff Accountant FAQs

How long does it take to become a Staff Accountant?

It takes 3 years of professional experience to become a staff accountant. That is the time it takes to learn specific staff accountant skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 6 to 8 years years to become a staff accountant.

Do staff accountants do accounts payable?

Yes, staff accountants assist with accounts payable. Staff accountants handle basic accounting tasks like financial reporting, budget preparation, and general bookkeeping for an organization.

How much do staff accountants make?

Staff accountants make $50,000 a year, on average. The amount a staff accountant earns varies by experience and education, however, ranging from $40,000 to $60,000 annually.

Entry-level staff accountants typically make closer to $40,000 a year, while experienced staff accountants make closer to $55,000 annually. However, a typical mid-career point for staff accountants is around $50,000 a year.

Is staff accountant a good job?

Yes, being a staff accountant is a good job. Accounting is an industry that will never go away and tends to have high income potential and significant room for growth.

With the high growth of accounting needs, many companies today compete to attract skilled accounting and finance professionals at all levels.

Is staff accountant higher than accountant?

Yes, a staff accountant is a higher position than an accountant. Depending on the organization, the title of staff accountant is typically a higher role than an accountant, often referred to as a junior accountant.

What is a staff accountant vs. an accountant?

Staff accountants hold a higher-level position than accountants. Staff accountants hold more experience than accountants and are in a mid-level position.

Staff accountants and accountants are similar in their financial duties and can hold similar credentials, but staff accountants have a higher level of experience which means they also typically take on a higher level of responsibility than the more junior level accountants.

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