What Are the Differences Between Accountant and CPA?
Certified public accountants (CPAs), also called Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), provide a wide array of financial advisory services to many small companies. These services usually include preparing financial statements for your company, providing general advice on different aspects of the business (management, operations, etc.), and advising on setting up effective accounting practices. In essence, CPAs are business coaches.
CPAs have many years of experience in the accounting field and have undergone many training programs to be eligible to become an accountant. A CPA is required to obtain an undergraduate degree in accounting, but can also obtain an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. After completing many accounting classes, CPAs may qualify for credit towards their master’s degree in accounting. CPAs are also required to pass examinations such as the MCITP (Measures of Certification Test for Financial Market Processes) or the CPA exam. There are also a number of colleges and universities that offer CPA training, so if you would rather not get trained by attending a traditional university, check with your local community college to see what financial accounting programs they offer.
CPAs are required to take a CPA exam following completion of a training program and passing a qualifying exam. If you want to become an accountant, you will need a CPA certification in order to legally practice in the United States. This means that you will need to pass the CPA exam. Although there are several different certifying agencies out there, the most prestigious is The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). Other minor certifying agencies include The National League of Professional Accountants (NFPAs) and the National Association of Legal Accountants (NALA).
As an accounting professional, you will have the opportunity to work in a variety of different fields. You can work in: government, education, business, healthcare, insurance, and even publishing. Although CPAs work mostly in accounting, there are a number of other career opportunities that you can pursue once you receive your CPA certificate. These include:
Private accounting firms employ accountants that have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance. Typically, accountants with CPA certification earn between forty-five and sixty thousand dollars annually. Salaries vary depending on the firm, the location, and the size of the company. The top accounting firms pay the highest salaries, but smaller firms offer pay levels that are consistent with those of large firms. Most accountants find employment at financial services firms.
The second type of CPA is the certified public accountant (CPA). A CPA is required to have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or business to be eligible for a job in public accounting firms. Some firms hire CPAs with CPA certification who already have a four-year degree in business. Others hire CPAs with a two-year degree and a CPA license. Either way, CPAs make between forty-five and sixty thousand dollars annually.
The third type of CPA is the self-employed professional CPA. In order to qualify for this designation, a CPA must have at least five years of experience in a similar role. Self-employed CPAs typically must have more than two years of experience in accounting or business. Qualification to become a self-employed CPA is a CPA exam with a score of at least 740.
The majority of business owners work with an accountant or a CPA. This is because most business owners do not have enough on hand to cover all of their expenses. They turn to an accountant or CPA to help them plan for the future and invest for growth. The majority of business owners can save money on taxes and a good accountant can help them achieve that goal.