4 Skills All Accounting Candidates Should Brush Up On

July 31st, 2015

Preparing for an upcoming interview for an accounting position? Be prepared to prove yourself, because if you’re hired, you’ll have some pretty weighty responsibilities. The accounting team is responsible for keeping accurate financial records and ensuring tax bills are paid on time, so companies don’t want to hire just anyone for the job.

You’ll need to spend time brushing up on accounting principles, software and other pertinent skills to make it clear you’re someone that can be trusted to excel in such an important position.

4 Key Accounting Skills You Need to Have

If you want to land a great accounting job at a reputable company, be sure to demonstrate your proficiency with these four skills:

  1. Accounting Software Fluency: If possible, find out what type of accounting software the company uses and familiarize yourself with it. If you’re unable to find out which program the team is using, acquaint yourself with popular options like QuickBooks or FreshBooks. Knowing your way around common platforms shows that you’re tech savvy and able to catch onto new software quickly.
  2. GAAP Knowledge: Companies want to hire an accounting professional who has the knowledge needed to keep their books in good standing. Refresh your memory of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), including basic accounting principles and guidelines, detailed rules and standards issues by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the generally accepted industry practices.
  3. Problem Solving Abilities: The accounting field can be unpredictable, so you need to show the interviewers that you can handle any problem thrown your way. Think of examples of past professional situations you’ve been in where you had to quickly analyze data and use the information to work through an issue. Offering solid evidence that you’re great in a crisis will certainly impress the hiring manager.
  4. Communication Skills: Accountants work with many different departments — and sometimes even clients — each and every day. Practice presenting financial information in an easy-to-understand manner that people can relate to. Impress the interviewer with your ability to understand complex financial situations and explain them to others without sounding condescending.

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