The accounts of any organisation are its lifeblood, and are the basis for calculating its performance, risks and investment opportunities. That’s why larger businesses will have whole teams of accountants monitoring and measuring the finances, and paying and charging the various people they work with. Accountants come in a range of specialisms and levels of experience, and the senior accountant is someone who has shown impressive aptitude in their field.
Usually positioned just below management or executive accountants in a business’s finance department, senior accountant jobs are not normally managerial themselves, but often involve training and assistance to junior accountants and onboarders. They will, however, be a trusted voice for accountancy managers, who appreciate that the senior accountant’s understanding of a specific financial matter could well exceed their own.
The skills required
As the name suggests, senior accountants won’t be freshly qualified at CIMA, AAT, ACCA, AIA or ICAEW level, but they will have augmented one of these qualifications with several years’ experience and a proven track record working in a busy accountancy department.
You’ll need to be thoroughly comfortable dealing with clients and suppliers, and should have an in-depth understanding of the sector that the role occupies, as there can be large differences between the financial and legal requirements of various sectors. Senior accountant jobs are often seen as stepping stones to managerial positions, although a lot of accountants are perfectly happy simply dealing with the numbers for their whole careers.
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