What Are The Different Types Of Accountants?
‘Accountant’ is a term that gets thrown around in the business world all the time. And if you have involvement in business, you are probably aware that most businesses will need to use one at some point. However, you are not alone if you are unsure about the difference between the many types of financial wizards we call accountants.
Determining the appropriate type of accountant to match the needs of your business can be confusing. Below is a quick summary of some of the different types of accountants available to you and your business.
They might be the most basic level of accountant, but the importance of bookkeepers should not be underestimated.
They enter the financial transactions of your business, including sales, receipts, purchases and payments. All further accounting data relies upon the accuracy of their work, so it’s important to make sure your bookkeeper is a stickler for detail!
Chartered Accountant (CA)
A Chartered Accountant is a major step up in terms of expertise. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in accounting and business, they must undertake postgraduate study, as well as a 3-year program under the guidance of a CA approved mentor. Internationally recognised, CA members have high-level skills across a variety of fields of accounting, including tax, auditing, financial reporting and management accounting. If your accountant is CA certified, you are in good hands.
Certified Practicing Accountant (CPA)
A Certified Practicing Accountant has also completed both a bachelor’s degree and post-graduate study in accountancy. Similarly to CA members, they must complete 3 years of practical experience, whilst working closely with an approved mentor in order to develop their high level skills in accountancy. CPA members are also skilled in a wide variety of areas of accounting.
As the title clearly suggests, a tax accountant has specialised skills in the area of tax. If you struggle with the intricate world of tax, do not mess around trying to bash your way through it, a tax accountant is your guy.
A management accountant evaluates valuable accounting information for use in decision making and planning of a business. This includes the management of company funds, cost analysis and stock keeping. Think about whether you need help with your business management, they are normally used by businesses that are medium to large in size.
In trouble with the law due to missing funds or discrepancies in your accounting? A forensic accountant is who you need. They work with individuals and companies that have allegedly committed crimes regarding their books, including tax evasion, fraud and embezzlement.
Once you have recorded all of your financial transactions, a financial accountant comes along to translate this information into financial reports. They will then analyse the reports in order to provide you with advice regarding the financial planning of your business. External parties can also use these reports in order to assess the value of your business.
A consultant helps you to make sense of your accounting information. They are used for the management of various aspects of your business. By analysing your financial reports they can determine the profitability of your business, where your business is making and losing its money, help to generate forecasts, restructure your business, and more. Pretty useful right?
This is just a brief look at some of the different types of accountants available to you. They are invaluable to the financial side of your business. You probably won’t need all of them, so pick and choose carefully!