The process of committing to a career path can be terrifying. You may have heard that accounting is a great specialty, but is it the right one for you? There are so many variables that are out of your control, and you may feel like you’re jumping into the unexpected.
The beauty of an accounting degree is that it’s incredibly versatile. You can easily flex between career paths, explore new specialties, and migrate into leadership roles — you can even start your own accounting practice.
You face a world of opportunity.
In order to fully pursue these opportunities, however, you need to understand some key macro-level trends.
Here are tips to help you navigate this challenging career decision:
The past few years have been a time of steady economic growth — and the accounting industry has been consistently climbing.
IBISWorld explains, “Demand for accounting services remained relatively steady during the recession, as demand from clients involved in bankruptcies or corporate restructuring offset losses.”
The key lesson to learn is that accounting is a profession that weathers any storm. It’s a ready career path that accelerates with economic peaks — but is also strong enough to resist the dips.
What’s important to keep in mind, however, is that this growth isn’t astronomical — it’s as fast as the average for all professions.
So what does this mean?
Accounting is a healthy career path, but it won’t necessarily be a high-growth industry. Opportunities for advancement will be strong, but there will be potential to plateau. For that reason, it is absolutely crucial that you round-out your skill set with a strong technical foundation — you may need to pursue growth opportunities in other parts of the business.
Accounting ranks #3 on the U.S. News list of best business jobs
Overall scores are based on 10-year growth volume, 10-year growth percentage, median salary, job prospects, employment rate, stress-level, and work-life balance.
There is high upward mobility, average stress, and lots of flexibility.
Not to mention, accounting is a specialized skill — which means that it’s entirely possible to transition into your own practice.
Demand for accounting grads reached an all-time high
According to the Journal of Accountancy, there is a recruiting war for new talent. If you’re a new grad looking to gain a foothold in the workforce, accounting is a great track to pursue.
Keep in mind that you can always specialize and change career paths later — accounting is a great way to start building your long-term trajectory.
Despite the four trends listed above, the accounting industry still suffers from two key challenges, according to the Journal of Accountancy: (1) a shortage of doctoral professors and (2) lack of diversity in the field.
It’s up to the new generation, however, to change the status quo and influence the outcome of these trends.
For more information on how we can help you choose the right accounting career, contact your local Accounting Principals office today.