Accounting Clerk Jobs - Do You Want To Be A Key Employee?

Accounting clerk jobs are plentiful and growing. You may be one of the many people considering an accounting clerk position as a way to start your career in business.  Good choice.
As an accounting clerk you will be exposed to much of the transactional life of a business.  You will gain valuable insight and experience that can be used to advance your career.  The role is competitive and challenging.  Wondering what it’s like to work as an accounting clerk?  We have answers.

Organized Service and Support

As an accounting clerk, you will support the transactional and general accounting functions of your employer.  On an average day you may reconcile a bank statement, verify the pricing on multiple invoices from vendors, and investigate a billing issue for a customer.  You will quite certainly enter data into the computerized accounting system used by your organization.

Accounting clerk jobs require a high degree of organization.  Because you work with multiple transactions on any given day, you must be able to move quickly from one task to another without missing important details and deadlines.

As an accounting clerk, you will serve just about everyone around you.  Typically accounting clerks report to an accounting manager or controller but answer questions from nearly every other manager in an organization.  The purchasing manager may request a purchase history.  The human resources manager may ask for payroll support.  A sales person may want help with an expense report. 

If you are a skilled accounting clerk you will quickly become the problem solver of choice for many of your fellow employees.

How do you feel about customer service?  Depending on the size of your organization, you may find yourself working closely with customers and vendors in a service capacity.  Because you have access to transactional information, you are often the best person to correct issues or answer questions about those transactions.  That means customer service, both in person and over the telephone.

Confidentiality and Ethics

Accounting clerk jobs give you access to information that is normally confidential.  You may have information on customer accounts and payment history.  You may assist with payroll and therefore know pay history and personal information for your fellow employees.  Who can you share this information with?  You will have to be careful to follow company guidelines.

What about ethics?  As with all accounting positions, you must hold yourself to a high ethical standard.  Seems pretty straightforward, but sometimes ethical questions are not easily answered.  For example, does the owner of the company have the right to see tax documents for an employee?  If you are helping with payroll the owner may ask you for those records.  It will be up to you to refuse.

Suppose you are shocked by an extravagant dinner a salesperson listed on their expense account.  The charge is approved by the sales manager.  You must resist the temptation to complain or even mention the charge to other employees.  It can be tough to guard even your casual conversation to protect confidentiality.  

Educational Requirements

Accounting clerk jobs are entry level jobs at most companies.  Don’t be fooled by the entry level status or a job posting requiring only basic office experience.  These positions are competitive and many applicants are recent college graduates with a new degree in business or accounting.

To be hired by all but the smallest organizations you will need a strong educational background in accounting.  An Associate Degree in Accounting is a good start.  A Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting will give you a competitive advantage and help you negotiate a higher salary.  

Education Lacking?  You Still Have Options.

It is possible to be hired without a degree.  If you are hoping for an accounting job of this kind but your education is not up to the mark, there are steps you can take.

  • Enroll Now: The next best thing to a completed degree is a degree in progress.  Take the initiative to enroll in an accounting program, either in person or online.  Show perspective employers that you are interested in improving your knowledge.

  • Highlight Experience: Successful accounting clerks are highly organized, efficient, and detailed.  What experiences on your resume demonstrate these qualities?  Feature them prominently on your resume and speak of them in your interview. 

  • Consider Temporary Employment Agencies: Staffing companies place accounting clerks with businesses on a temporary basis to cover an extended employee absence or unexpectedly heavy workload.  A staffing company will test your skills and place you as a temporary accounting clerk.  While you are on the job, you will gain experience but more importantly demonstrate your skills and abilities.

Have we managed to convince you just how good accounting clerk jobs can be?