Take a look at some of the most popular careers in accounting and taxation.
Auditing is a central part of accounting. Auditors review the financial statements of businesses to ensure they are accurately presented. They may work for independent public accounting firms or serve as internal auditors within companies. A career in this capacity may also involve tasks such as sourcing records through financial statements for businesses and organizations. This work has become increasingly computerized, so a strong foundation in information systems is vital.
Budget analysts make financial plans for businesses, government agencies and nonprofits. Strong negotiating skills are a must.
Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) provide tax compliance and planning services to their firms’ clients. Generally, the larger firms service the larger companies. Areas of tax practice include individual income tax, corporate taxation, partnership and S-corporation taxation, estate and gift taxation, international taxation, state and local taxation, and trust taxation.
Financial accountants prepare financial statements and other reports for businesses and enterprises. They play a crucial role in mergers and acquisitions.
Financial advisors help their clients make prudent investment decisions and are often involved with tax planning. They help clients meet their personal financial goals, including savings, debt, retirement, education funding, and investments. Many financial advisors hold the CFP (Certified Financial Planner), or the PFS (Personal Financial Specialist) designation in addition to the MST.
Forensic Accounting/Fraud Examination
A forensic accountant is an investigator, auditor, attorney, and accountant all in one. You’ll look for evidence, conduct analyses, interview involved parties, and draw conclusions. A forensic accountant prepares each case as if it will result in litigation. They’re frequently asked to give expert testimony on fraud and accounting-related matters. Forensic accountants can also be used to set up proactive fraud prevention programs.
Internal Revenue Service
Career opportunities with the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) are expansive. You can specialize in many different areas, such as income tax, excise tax, international tax, estate and gift tax, large business, and small business. Experience at the IRS is often leveraged to start a career with public accounting firms or with private companies.
You can also work for the U.S. Treasury Department, which oversees the IRS, interpreting tax laws through the issuance of regulations, performing economic analysis and commenting on tax policy.
The MST degree is often a requirement for these careers.
Management accountants focus on the capital budgeting and business analysis areas of accounting. They analyze contracts and expenses for businesses and organizations. Working closely with marketing managers and financial managers, they help make major business decisions.
Tax attorneys help taxpayers to rectify issues they have with the IRS or state revenue department. This may include auditing, navigating fines incurred, or lien removal. A tax attorney may specialize in a variety of areas, such as income tax, tax law, corporate tax, or estate and trust taxation and estate planning. Many attorneys earn an MST degree and may also be CPAs.
State and Local Government
You can work in the tax departments of state, city, county and town government, specializing in areas such as income tax, property tax, excise tax, sales and use tax, meals tax, and many others.
Tax accountants may work in public accounting firms or most other types of businesses. They prepare income tax statements for corporate and personal income, in addition to tax planning. This field requires a strong knowledge of economics, federal, state and international tax codes, and legal procedures involved.