Advantages of Having a CPA in Corporate America

As a corporate accountant, becoming a certified public accountant can take your career to new heights and improve the quality of your work, making it worthwhile to get licensed. Your peers are also more likely to respect your opinion, given your professional credibility and business acumen. If you’re going to work for a corporation, and you’re weighing the pros and cons of getting certified, be sure to consider these advantages.

Professional Credibility

Most accountants know that becoming a CPA isn’t easy. You have to meet education, experience and testing requirements that are difficult to attain. Although licensing requirements vary by state, most jurisdictions require that you have one to two years of work experience under a CPA, before you can become licensed. You also need the college credits equivalent to a graduate degree in business or accounting, in order to meet the education requirement. Passing the exam isn’t easy either. Getting your CPA certification sends a signal to your peers that you are experienced, educated and skilled, adding to your credibility at work.

Career Advancement

In a corporate setting, there are specific jobs and tasks that only a CPA can perform. In particular, jobs in technical accounting require an in-depth knowledge of U.S. GAAP and FASB pronouncements, which is why CPAs are used to fill these roles. CPAs are able to move beyond the basic accounting functions within a corporation, such as routine journal entries and account reconciliations, to perform in-depth analysis on financial statements and management accounting reports. These additional skills will help you advance your career; possibly into upper management.

Possible corporate positions for CPAs include:

  • Director of Operational Accounting
  • Director of Technical Accounting
  • Controller
  • Vice President of Accounting & Finance
  • Chief Financial Officer

Business Acumen

The CPA exam tests more than financial reporting and U.S. GAAP knowledge. It also tests your knowledge of general business practices and covers subjects including total quality management, economics and contract law. When you pass the CPA exam you’re demonstrating that you have a firm grasp of the business world to everyone that you work with. You will also be able to have technical conversations with your peers in finance, operations, sales & marketing and general administration, because you have the business acumen of a CPA .

Becoming a CPA isn’t easy, but it’s worth it over the long run if you have ambitions to advance your career. Consider these advantages and others when deciding whether or not to take the leap and become a CPA. Becker’s CPA Exam Review can help you.