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Bookkeeping, Accounting and Audit Clerk

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Overall Score
(6.5 out of 10)

Number of Jobs

204,600

Median Salary

$35,170

Unemployment Rate

6.4 percent

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This Job is Ranked in
Best Business Jobs #6
The 100 Best Jobs #43

Bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks are tasked with recording financial transactions, updating statements and checking financial records for accuracy. Among the three titles, there are three distinct areas of responsibility. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, bookkeeping clerks have a wide portfolio: handling a company’s accounts, completing financial statements and reports for management and checking reports for accuracy, among other responsibilities. But as David Bybee, president of the National Bookkeepers Association, notes, bookkeepers can only handle financial statements and reports if they have a QuickBooks certification. Accounting clerks, who work for large companies, have a more narrow area of focus: accounts payable or accounts receivable. Meanwhile, auditing clerks ensure the use of proper coding in financial documents and relay any errors within them to accountants.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment growth of 11.4 percent for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks between 2012 and 2022. During that period, an additional 204,600 jobs will need to be filled. As the economy grows and businesses expand their operations, more bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks will be needed.

Salary

Bookeeping, accounting and auditing clerks earned a median salary of $35,170 in 2012, according to the BLS. The best-paid 10 percent in the field made $54,310, while the bottom 10 percent made $21,610. The highest-paying jobs are in the metropolitan areas of San Francisco, San Jose, Calif., and Napa, Calif.

Salary Range

75th Percentile $44,070
Median $35,170
25th Percentile $27,750

Training

Clerks are best served by obtaining certification and work experience rather than a college education. “Training is more of a keyword than education,” Bybee explains. He adds that if your career plans begin and end with this occupation, bookkeeping fundamentals, training and a single-year certificate is all you need. But he notes that in an economy where a single job post can invite hundreds of applications, certifications such as QuickBooks, Certified Payroll Professional and Microsoft Excel can distinguish your résumé. Bookkeepers can receive the Certified Bookkeeper Designation, which is awarded by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers, which requires two years of experience or equivalent part-time work and passing a four-part exam.

Reviews & Advice

Prior experience and certification only increase your chances for landing a job. But where you pursue employment is important, too. Larger corporations with a big financial staffs may not require as much experience or formal training. But many smaller businesses – those with 25 employees or less – are searching for candidates who require little to no on-the-job training.

Job Satisfaction

Upward Mobility poor Below Average
Stress Level good Low
Flexibility good Above Average
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Last updated by Casey Quinlan.


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