Should you study to be an accountant or switch your career to accounting?

If you are a high school graduate or a working professional who is thinking of making a career switch, you might want to consider becoming an accountant. Why should you become an accountant? In this short article I will give you five good reasons.

#1 Accounting jobs are plentiful.
Every organization – multinational corporations, small and medium enterprises, government bodies, non-profit organizations – needs accountants. Not only that, as accountants are well trained in financial and business analytical skills, they can also work in banking and finance, financial analysis, and business forecast jobs.

#2 Accounting jobs are recession proof
Accounting can be considered as one of those recession proof jobs[1]. When times are bad, accountants have lower unemployment rates when compared to those in administration, sales and marketing.

#3 You can choose the industry you like
Every organization needs accountants. Needless to say, accountants can work in any industry. For example, you are an animal lover but have not studied veterinary medicine, you can follow your passion and work as an accountant in an animal hospital. If you like fashion but are not a fashion designer, you can choose to be an accountant for a clothing brand. Working in the industry that you like will give more job satisfaction and motivate you to work harder.

#4 High pay
In the business discipline, accountants are considered a professional job. The salaries of accountants are therefore generally higher than non-professional jobs such as marketers, office administrators or salespersons.
The average annual salary of an accountant in the US is $70500 [2]. In Singapore, an accountant draws an average monthly salary of S$3807[3].

#5 Good career path
Accountants tend to have a better career path than jobs in other business functions such as customer service, marketing, or administration. As accountants play an important role in an organization’s information system, as well as in financial and strategic decision making, they are good candidates to move up the corporate ladder to take up the C-suite positions – chief financial officer (CFO) or chief executive officer (CEO). In a research done in the United Kingdom, one in five FTSE 100 CEOs is an accountant [4].


Contributed by Eric Ong

Eric has been in the education industry for more than 25 years. He is a lecturer in private colleges in Vietnam as well as a corporate trainer in soft skills. He holds a Bachelor Degree in Banking, a Master in Business Administration and Master in Professional Accounting.