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How to Become an Accountant: FAQs on Your Accounting Course
Is an accounting course required to become an accountant in Australia? The short answer is “YES”.
To help you start your accounting career, we answered some of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about accounting courses in this blog:
How to Become an Accountant: FAQs
- 1. Why Accounting Course?
- 2. What Skills Do I Need to Become an Accountant?
- 3. What Accounting Course Should I Do?
- 4. How Long is an Accounting Course?
- 5. How Much Does an Accounting Course Cost?
- 6. How Much Can I Earn as an Accountant?
- 7. Is an Accounting Course Hard?
Becoming an accountant in Australia means becoming part of the ‘Professionals’ occupation group, with the largest number of jobs of more than 3 million—or almost one in four—Australian workers*. According to australianjobs.employment.gov.au, accountants are the second top employing occupation for professionals, next only to registered nurses. Studying an accounting course is critical, with 100% of professional accountants completing at least a skilled vocational diploma.
As of Nov 2018, professional accountants already totalled 188,400 jobs (24.8%) in the Accounting, Banking and Financial Services sector, followed by accounting clerks with 131,700 jobs (17.3%). Accountant jobs are forecasted to grow strongly in the future, as people and businesses who need accounting and finance services also increase.
1. Why Accounting Course?
A nationally-recognised accounting course like the FNS40217 Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping, or the FNS50217 Diploma of Accounting is an excellent first step to becoming a good accountant in Australia.
Since accountants provide a wide range of accounting and finance services, knowledge and expertise across different competencies must be achieved. Thus, high-level finance and accounting functions are thoroughly developed and assessed in the core and elective units included in these accounting qualifications.
Additionally, these accounting courses are easily accessible through providers such as universities or Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) either via face-to-face or online training. You have the opportunity to complete your accounting course as quickly as your time and energy permits, thus giving you the quickest way to become an accountant.
2. What Skills Do I Need to Become an Accountant?
As you start your accounting course and your career in the financial industry, you will be required to do a wide variety of tasks – which is why it’s important to have a good set of foundation skills. Aside from being good with numbers, here are some key skills that will be useful for an aspiring accountant:
- ✓ Independent and Self-Motivated
- ✓ Have General Business Knowledge
- ✓ Attention to Detail
- ✓ Problem Solving and Critical Thinking Skills
- ✓ Organisational Skills
- ✓ Communication Skills
3. What Accounting Course Should I Do?
Having the skills in Accounting and Finance is great to have for a successful business as well as in every other enterprise or industry. But what course or courses do you need to take to start a career in Accounting?
A bachelor’s degree in accounting or similar is needed to qualify and gain entry into the Chartered Accountants of Australia (ICAA) and CPA Australia (CPA). While the Institute of Public Accountants (IPA) needs at least an FNS50215 Diploma of Accounting as an entry requirement.
These are the 3 recognised institutions that regulate the accounting industry in Australia.
However, you can still work in an accounting role and start to familiarise yourself in the industry if you are not ready to pursue a bachelor’s degree yet. This way, you can gain much-needed skills and understanding first-hand as you pursue a career in the accounting and finance industry.
Here are some courses you can take for the quickest way to start and become an accountant in Australia:
Become skilled and in-demand in the accounting and finance industry with the FNS40217 Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping qualification. This course is nationally recognised and is suitable for anyone wishing to learn and gain knowledge and vital skills needed in the accounting and financial services sector. Enrol now and study accounting with Inspire Education, we offer this course via Online Learning.
This is the most common course to study for a career in accounting. It is an ideal accounting course to help you train and develop your skills and knowledge in a range of accounting and finance career pathways and be confident to take on more senior accounting roles. Enrol now and study accounting with Inspire Education, we offer this course via Online Learning.
Gain thorough understanding and learn complex operations to further advance your accounting and finance career. This course qualification is perfect for anyone wishing to advance and pursue their career as a tax agent status or wanting a career in commercial accounting.
4. How Long is an Accounting Course?
Your study period depends on what type of accounting course you opt to complete. You may study accounting online or face-to-face and achieve your qualification within weeks, months, or even years.
Now, ask yourself, “How much time can I allot and dedicate in studying an accounting course?”
If you don’t have a lot of spare time or badly need the qualification as soon as possible, consider short accounting courses. Here, you’ll be introduced to the basics of accounting and complete this course in less than a month. Most people complete this course in just 2 weeks.
- ✓ For a more in-depth accounting course, the nationally-recognised accounting courses mentioned above are perfect for you. It takes 1 to 2 years to complete these courses, depending on the training provider and your chosen delivery method.
- ✓ If you wish to dedicate more time to gain advanced and high-level accounting skills, you might want to consider advanced accounting courses such as a bachelor’s degree. You may complete this in 3 years or more, and additional years if you wish to continue with post-graduate, master, and doctoral studies.
Whichever option you choose, always bear in mind how much time you can commit to achieving your accounting qualification.
You may also want to visit MySkills.gov.au to check the average course duration for the different accounting courses from different training providers.
5. How Much Does an Accounting Course Cost?
It really depends. We do have a dedicated post about it here for a much more detailed explanation.
Several factors need to be considered when deciding which accounting course to take.
Firstly, what are your goals? Are you looking into studying short courses? A certificate or a diploma in accounting course? If you have the time and budget, then a bachelor’s degree maybe?
Second, how do you want to study? What setup is convenient for you? Online accounting courses are available Australia-wide, which are significantly flexible schedule-wise, and the most cost-effective delivery option. Alternatively, face-to-face courses are also available. Although this option will cost a bit more, you will have real-time interaction with your trainer, as well as possibly expand your network in the same industry.
Lastly, make sure that you enrol in a recognised institution. There are a lot of RTOs, TAFEs and universities that offer accounting courses. Do your research, read reviews, check for possible scholarships, and make sure that you take a nationally recognised qualification that is current in the accounting and finance industry.
6. How Much Can I Earn as an Accountant?
An accounting career has a great earning potential simply because as long as businesses are open, there will always be accounting jobs available. Accountants are in charge of managing the overall financial operations, including generating reports; preparing and maintaining budgets; conducting audits and financial investigation; managing cash flow and tax; and so much more – which is why they will always be a critical part of any company.
Aside from being an accountant, there are also numerous related jobs that you can take, such as becoming an Accounts Administrator, Assistant Accountant, Financial Accountant, Auditor, Management Accountant, among many others.
As per JobOutlook, there is a high chance that the demand for accountants will increase over the next 5 years. On average, an accountant can earn up to $1,660 per week, or up to $79,680 per year. Though this may vary depending on your experience, it is definitely a profitable career and one that isn’t going away anytime soon.
7. Is an Accounting Course Hard?
When you type the words “is accounting” on Google, the following suggested searches will appear:
- “is accounting hard”
- “is accounting course hard”
- “is accounting difficult”
Accounting courses, just like other courses, are challenging. The meaning of the word, ‘hard’ is usually relative to a person’s skill and experience. For example, Person A may find something hard that Person B finds easy.
If you find yourself wanting to study accounting, you should expect several rigorous coursework and never-ending study. But if you have a passion for numbers, spreadsheets, finances, and other accounting-related matters, then studying accounting doesn’t have to be hard. You should be fully interested and dedicated since studying also depends on one’s level of interest. Think about the long run and the benefits of completing your accounting course.
It may be challenging, but it’s not impossible; just imagine the amazing opportunities that await you.
Conclusion: Are You Ready to Become an Accountant?
Surely, you still might have other questions about starting your accounting career. We hope this blog answered some of your questions about accounting courses and how they are essential to you becoming an accountant in the future.
For details on enrolling to Inspire Education’s Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping or Diploma of Accounting, feel free to enquire on the course of your choice and get a complete information pack.
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