How to Become an Accountant in Australia

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Accounting is one of Australia’s fastest-growing professions, but there’s definitely a lot more to being an Accountant than knowing your way around a bookkeeper. In order to be a certified accountant in Australia, there are certain level of experiences and qualification you’ll need to achieve.  Australian institution offers a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate studies where if one chooses a major in accounting and completes the program, you will be eligible to join various accounting accreditation bodies such as CPA or CA. Some programs offered by Australian institutions will also be able to waive subjects when you are undertaking units with these popular accreditation bodies. 

As an Accountant, you’ll provide finance and accounting functions to organisations and individuals, generally relating to taxation and financial dealings and advising on associated monetary record-keeping and compliance requirements.

[How much can you earn as an accountant in Australia – read more]

What professional skills do I need to become an Accountant?

The professional skills necessary to work as an Accountant will depend on the area you choose to work in, such as Taxation, management account, audit and corporate finance. however, most roles will prefer you to have experience in financial report writing and using spreadsheets. There are also strict requirements when it comes to accounting code of practice.

Australia’s accounting industry is regulated and accredited by three professional accounting bodies – the Institute of Public Accountants (IPA), CPA Australia (CPA) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia (ICAA). The minimum qualification for entry to IPA is at least a Diploma or Advanced Diploma in Accounting. The CPA and ICAA require a Bachelor degree in Accounting, such as a Bachelor of Business With a Major in Accounting. Employers also highly regard accounting graduates (or those with little experience) who have entered into a CA or CPA program or expressed a desire to.

If you are just starting out. What’s your first step?

You will have to feel ready to commit to a Diploma, Bachelor degree or Master of Accounting to get your foot in the door. 

[cheapest universities to study a business degree in Australia – read more]

Those without tertiary qualification or with little to no experience in the industry can gain exposure to light bookkeeping responsibilities, accounts payable, and payroll processing with the below courses:

These certificates will equip you with the skills necessary to work as Payroll Clerk or Accounts Payable Clerk, and give you the foundation to work your way up to an Accountant role with regular professional development.

To be a successful Accountant, you will need to have:

  • Good with numbers
  • Excellent organisational skills
  • Sharpe eye for detail
  • Strong sense of ethics
  • Good problems solver
  • Good communication skills

As Australia’s second biggest industry, it’s not just young starters who are finding their feet as Accountants.

[How much can you earn as an accountant in Australia – read more]

With approximately 11,000 accounting jobs in demand as per search on December 2017, it’s an industry with an enormous opportunity too.

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About Post Author
Michelle Phan
A freelance writer, graduated from Curtin University, specialises in commercial writing, love travel and enjoy walking on the beach, Michelle also feeds on Psychology and will give away just about anything to cuddle with furry felines.
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