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Accountants: Do you like your job? - Page 17

post #241 of 273
A little background:

I graduated from UCI with a degree in poli sci with a good GPA. Decided law school wasn't for me, so I started working in sales in the health care industry and am in the process of starting a consultancy business with some of my friends who have complementary knowledge on the health care industry. Now I've always felt that I wanted to go into administration/CFO/CEO positions but I feel underqualified as I have no real paper credentials besides my experience in the field. I have been taking classes at community college to fulfill the business/accounting units to get my CPA, after which I will probably get an MBA. Does this sound appropriate for someone wishing to go into a CFO position? Should I get experience at a big4 and would that even be possible if I was not a finance/business major?
post #242 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saltricks View Post

A little background:
I graduated from UCI with a degree in poli sci with a good GPA. Decided law school wasn't for me, so I started working in sales in the health care industry and am in the process of starting a consultancy business with some of my friends who have complementary knowledge on the health care industry. Now I've always felt that I wanted to go into administration/CFO/CEO positions but I feel underqualified as I have no real paper credentials besides my experience in the field. I have been taking classes at community college to fulfill the business/accounting units to get my CPA, after which I will probably get an MBA. Does this sound appropriate for someone wishing to go into a CFO position? Should I get experience at a big4 and would that even be possible if I was not a finance/business major?
I also went to UCI :)
I'm more interested in your health care experience. Did you know each Big 4 has some variation of an advisory/consulting practice? Deloitte is the only one with an actual consulting entity. If I were you I would look into joining the consulting/advisory groups that specialize in health care....
Big 4 typically recruits recent college graduates or experienced hire (with public accounting experience or relevant industry experience). Getting Big 4 experience will definitely help you land management level jobs (after a few years of experience), but it will mainly be in back office type stuff.
CPA + MBA isnt a common combination because having the CPA is all you need to make it in accounting. However, if you are looking to use the CPA to get your foot in the door and then use the MBA to transition to finance or management, then it might work.
 
Ignore my formatting. haha



 

post #243 of 273
Hey guys,

I've been reading up on corporate finance, and it sound awesome! Definately something I want to go into. Are any of you financial analysts/CFO's who can tell me the finer points about the job??
post #244 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by pokey07 View Post

Is the new job more enjoyable?

So far so good. It's only a few weeks in so I'm still getting settled and learning my role day by day. Thus far it seems like a more relaxed pace. Im still getting used to being a very small cog in a very big machine - a far cry from taking a birds eye view to audit an entire company's year in 2 weeks. Ask me how I feel after year-end and it might be a different story.

Also, for all the guys considering the profession or in it, check out this blog http://www.goingconcern.com - great tabloid style blog for accountants. Lots of other accountants all going through the same thing venting and sharing the inside track on things like firm salaries. It's daily reading for me now because it keeps me in tune.
post #245 of 273
Yeah, I've been reading that blog a lot lately.

I actually majored in economics and consider going back to school for accounting from time to time. It's been either dead end jobs or unemployment for me since graduation.
post #246 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by timothycook View Post

Hey guys,
I've been reading up on corporate finance, and it sound awesome! Definately something I want to go into. Are any of you financial analysts/CFO's who can tell me the finer points about the job??

Financial analyst is a pretty vague title. You could be doing bank reconciliations and posting JE's all day to doing cash flow forecasts and other financial modeling. A lot of it depends on the company.
post #247 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texasmade View Post

As an audit staff your life sucks. Everything you do doesn't require any thought. Once you make senior, the work gets more interesting but a lot more stressful. I'm an audit senior in a big 4 and I never vouch or tickmark anything. I make my staff do all of the grunt work.
Also, all the staff believe they have more business acumen than the others when in reality they're all about equal. I've only dealt with a few really really smart audit staff.

I have run into very few accountants that care about anything but debits and credits.
post #248 of 273

I am a late starter as I graduated from Univ of AZ in 1980 at age 36.  I'm a CPA in industry, not public accounting.  I am the Treasurer and CFO for a small company (65 employees) in northern Virginia.  I love my job.  I have a staff of two full time and one part time employees.  Occasionally I do it all and get to do almost all of it my way.  I do report to the president and Bd of Dir, but they rarely ask anything of me that takes more than a few minutes to answer.  I work 4 days a week and my commute is about 10 minutes on a good day, 15 to 20 on a bad day.  I wear nice slacks, sport shirt, and loafers almost daily.  On Friday we have a casual dress code and I sometimes wear jeans.

 

I encourage young people to consider accounting as a profession because I find it satisfying and it pays well enough.  If you can go directly from college to one of the big firms, you will most likely never hurt for a well paying job.  The first few years can be boring, but once you get beyond the basics it can be fun and satisfying.  As stated earlier, jumping from public accounting to industry is the way to go for most.  Just be patient.

 

My responsibilities include, without limitation: payroll, contracts, banking, investments, insurance, leases, taxes, Government reporting, invoicing, cost accounting, fringe benefits management, ESOP trustee, budgeting, and a lot of other stuff.  Like I said I sometimes do it all myself.  I am never bored.

 

Cheers,

 

This was not intended to be a resume. :<)

post #249 of 273
I'm graduating next spring with a bachelor's in accountancy. How are job/career prospects for the Big 4? Thanks in advance.
post #250 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flame View Post

I'm graduating next spring with a bachelor's in accountancy. How are job/career prospects for the Big 4? Thanks in advance.

Good. Be prepared to work. A lot. You're going to be giving up weekends, parties, and if you're in audit that doesn't do Financial Services your New Year's Eve. You're going to be eating hours left and right.
post #251 of 273
^Only for the first 3-4 years before becoming team manager, assuming I stay, or get my CPA and become a controller elsewhere?
post #252 of 273
Thread Starter 
I've been in public audit at a regional firm for about 1.5 years now...first thing to do is get your CPA (especially if the firm pays for Becker and they give you a bonus for passing). I don't think the hours lighten up for a long time, as a new Staff you're sheltered under the "veil of ignorance" so to speak, but after a few years and being promoted to Senior they expect more responsibility for keeping jobs moving, finalizing binders, etc. Everyone I work with says Senior (years 2/3-5/6) is the hardest work and longest hours.
post #253 of 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flame View Post

^Only for the first 3-4 years before becoming team manager, assuming I stay, or get my CPA and become a controller elsewhere?

No, managers work a shit load. They just don't charge all of the hours. Also, years 3-5 you're a senior associate in the big 4 not a team manager unless you're at PwC then its years 3-6 as senior. I've also never seen anyone become a controller after only 3-4 years in public unless they had prior experience as an industry accountant.
post #254 of 273
^ This. I spent a looong time at a Big 4 firm and can vouch for that. If you're dreaming of a partner track, work never ends. If you're thinking of going to industry after a few years, you'll get a reprieve, somewhat.
post #255 of 273

^Any of you guys have tips on how to land an internship at a Big 4? What do the interviewer look for aside from good grades? I'm going to be a sophomore in the fall. Hoping to get an internship for summer of 2013 (this doesn't have to be a big name firm) but I'd like to have a Big 4 or some other well known accounting firm as an internship in the summer after my junior year. Currently GPA is 3.38 but planning on getting that 3.5+ hopefully. Is it going to be a problem if I haven't really taken any accounting classes? By the end of spring semester 2013, I would be done with an intro accounting class but my school doesn't let us take any higher courses until junior year so I feel like that might put me behind others.

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