New Orleans - Accounting Career Outlook
Individuals interested in a career as an accountant or auditor should have at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting, business, or a related field. The greatest opportunity for advancement will be granted to those who take the extra step of earning certifications, most commonly exemplified by the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential. Obtaining a master’s degree in accounting or business with a concentration in accounting will also increase the rate of advancement in this field. *See Note Below
Accounting Career Paths
Accountants enjoy a high degree of occupational mobility. Not only can they find work in virtually any geographical location, they can also find employment in any sector of the economy. Every company needs skilled accounting help; some businesses may use a single accounting consultant while larger companies and corporations employ vast teams of accountants specializing in different areas.
This occupational mobility also includes upward advancement in the accounting field. Since internal auditors are often primed for executive positions within a company, many public and management accountants eventually shift to internal auditing for career growth.
- Public accountants - Entry-level public accountants typically begin advancing and receiving more responsibility after one or two years in the field. A few years later, they will often move into a Senior Accountant role. Further advancement includes management of other accountants, opening their own accounting business, or transitioning to executive-level positions.
- Management accountants - Most management accountants enter the field as cost accountants, junior internal auditors or trainees for other specialized accounting positions. Typical advancement includes promotion to chief cost accountant, budget director, manager of internal auditing, and supervising other accountants.
- Internal auditors - Most often, professionals in this position begin in the public accounting or management accounting fields. Those beginning a career in internal auditing will learn the basics of the auditing function as well as the organization’s internal business-unit makeup. As they progress, internal auditors receive increased responsibilities such as evaluating the effectiveness of the company’s internal controls and fiscal management. They also may investigate the information systems for proper use and accuracy. Because of this in-depth knowledge of the organization’s internal operations, internal auditors often progress into executive positions.
Accountants typically work in an office setting, although an increasing number of companies are allowing accountants to complete some work from home. Some accountants and auditors travel frequently in order to audit other branches, satellite offices, or client sites.
A 40-hour work week is standard although additional hours may be required prior to important deadlines such as year end and tax time. In addition, self-employed accountants often work beyond 40 hours, especially if they have a large number of clients. Other accountants may work on a contract basis – for example, tax specialists might choose to work only during tax season.
NOTE: The Bachelor of Science in Accounting program at Herzing University does not fulfull all of the requirements for a graduate to take the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam or apply for licensure as a CPA in most states/jurisdictions. Most states/jurisdictions require a specific amount of study beyond a bachelor's degree (typically, a total of 150 semester credit hours, but this varies by state/jurisdiction) as well as several years of professional experience working in accounting to be eligible to apply for licensure. Some states (including, but not neccessarily limited to, Texas) require the program to have a specific programmatic accreditation for graduates to apply for licensure as a CPA, which this program does not have at this time, and no representation has been made to when or if such an accreditation will be obtained. Applicants interested in becoming a CPA should check with their state board of accounting prior to enrolling in any accounting program. Students planning to pursue certification other than the CPA exam should also contact with their state board of accounting prior to enrolling in any accounting program.
The information below reflects aggregated data from all of the Herzing University campuses that have students enrolled in the specified program in the specified time period. The information does not reflect data regarding individual campuses unless only one campus had students to report. The reporting period used to obtain this data was 7/1/2012-6/30/2013. If there were less than 10 graduates in a program, median loan debt and on-time completion data were not disclosed for that program to protect the privacy of those students. Tuition and length may vary by campus location. Ranges could not be input for tuition and length, therefore tuition and length reported are the highest tuition rates and longest program length to encompass all campuses. For information regarding specific campus tuition please refer to http://www.herzing.edu/tuition-financial-aid . For a more detailed description of how the data was calculated please refer to the Disclosure Methodology located here http://www.herzing.edu/files/2014Disclosures-Methodology.pdf .
ASSOCIATE OF SCIENCE & ASSOCIATE OF APPLIED SCIENCE IN ACCOUNTING
BACHELOR OF SCIENCE IN ACCOUNTING
Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
The Bachelor of Science in Accounting program at Herzing University does not fulfill all of the requirements for a graduate to take the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam or apply for licensure as a CPA in most states/jurisdictions. Most states/jurisdictions require a specific amount of study beyond a bachelor’s degree (typically, a total of 150 semester credit hours, but this varies by jurisdiction) as well as several years of professional experience working in accounting to be eligible to apply for licensure. Some states (including, but not necessarily limited to, Texas) require the program to have a specific programmatic accreditation for graduates to apply for licensure as a CPA, which this program does not have at this time, and no representation has been made as to when or if such an accreditation will be obtained. Applicants interested in becoming a CPA should check with their state board of accountancy regarding CPA eligibility requirements prior to enrolling in any accounting program. Students planning to pursue certifications other than the CPA exam should also contact the respective certifying organization to confirm requirements for certification prior to enrolling in any accounting program.
Bookkeeping and Payroll Accounting
Graduates of the Herzing University Bookkeeping and Payroll Accounting Diploma program will have met the education requirement for the following certification opportunities:
American Payroll Association (APA)
- Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) – This exam is for entry-level payroll professionals who wish to prove basic payroll competency. Examinees are given three hours to complete the 150 multiple-choice question electronic test. Upon passing, the credential is good for three years and requires continuing education credits to re-certify. These credits can be earned by taking courses, attending APA industry seminars and programs, or retaking the exam.