Although you will perform basically the same tasks as a general accountant and as a CPA, there are more advantages to becoming a certified public accountant. There are many more options for employment when you have the certification because you can broaden the scope of responsibilities you can take on. You also have a greater mobility to advance your career by moving into management positions, both in the private sector and in the various levels of government. With the certification as a public accountant, you demonstrate that you have the professional ethics and a broad base of knowledge that allows you to take on challenging cases.
A CPA is a highly respected accountant in the accounting industry. The courses you take and the comprehensive exam that you must pass proves that you have the ability to deal with complex financial and accounting issues and that you have the written and oral communication skills you need to be able to deliver the results of your tasks effectively to those concerned. For example, a certified public accountant can use the financial reports and statements and the company ledgers to create a clear picture of the practices and operation of a business.
Like other accountants, a CPA deals with tax preparation, cost estimation and consulting on accounting issues. However, there are other areas where you can excel when you are a certified public accountant. You start off your accounting career working with a firm. You engage in continuing education and take additional courses that will give you the knowledge and skills needed to pass the comprehensive exam. Once you are certified as a public accountant, a whole new world of possibilities opens for you. You can still remain with the firm performing your usual duties, which can include estate planning, financial advising, auditing or working on your own as a private accountant.
When you have the CPA designation, you can become an internal auditor for the government or a large firm. Government agencies will not hire accountants who are not certified. You can also move into the filed of forensic accounting and deal with investigations of fraud when you become certified. When you have exceptional skills in information technology, combined with public accountant certification, you can move into higher paying positions where you develop and design systems and management controls to help business and government have more security controls and be able to make better use of their resources.
In the role of financial advising and investing, CPA’s shine in helping businesses and government agencies develop and maintain budgets, perform cost estimations for projects and manage their investment portfolios to maximize their annual profits. When you have this certification and experience working in the accounting business, your expertise will be in demand for consulting with individuals on their personal and financial wealth in terms of retirement planning. Just having the certificate will immediately prepare you for the world of management as soon as a position opens in your company or if you want to move to another company in such a position. This certification is recognized all over the world, so you can essentially work anywhere you want.