There are basically four different types of accounting jobs: public accounting, management accounting, governmental accounting, and internal audit accounting. While each accounting job may differ slightly in its job responsibilities and work atmosphere, all accountants are responsible for the finances of the company or the client they work for. They take care of all business transactions and bookkeeping.
A public accountant has the broadest opportunities of all accounting jobs. A public accountant may work alone and be self-employed, or may share a business with several other public accountants. The job responsibilities of a public accountant may vary from personal bookkeeping, to analyzing the finances and managing accounting services for the client. Clients may simply be one individual, a business, a non-profit organization, or a large firm or agency.
Public accountants may prepare their client's taxes each year, and give financial advice regarding employment compensation. They may audit financial records to make sure they are balanced. Forensic accountants are public accountants, but specialize in analyzing financial records to identify fraud, money laundering or embezzlement. These accountants usually work directly with lawyers and law enforcement officers, and may have to testify in court regarding their findings.
Management accountants work for businesses as private accountants. This type of accountant does not have varied list of responsibilities compared to the public accountant, but rather has a more structured schedule of responsibilities. The company they work for trusts them to manage and budget the finances. Cost management or performance evaluation may be assessed as well. They may budget new financial plans and products, and also prepare the company's taxes every year.
Government accounting jobs are the third type of accounting job. This particular accounting job is solely restricted to working for government agencies. They make sure all records comply with the law, and they may also be involved in budgeting and assessing finances in a management capacity.
Internal auditing accountants are primarily responsible for reviewing a company's financial records to point out any mismanagement of funds, as well as fraudulent activity. They evaluate a company's budget for efficiency, and make sure they comply with all laws and regulations. They may specialize in specific areas that include the environment, compliance, or technology.
Most accountants begin their careers in entry-level positions as bookkeepers or accounting clerks. After some experience, higher positions such as an accounting director may be obtained. Management levels of various accounting jobs include becoming a comptroller, or a chief financial officer of a company. As with any job, the higher the position - the greater responsibilities; however, it also means the higher the pay.