Good news for accountants of all stripes – CNN/Money reports that jobs you currently or could possibly hold down are some of the best in all the land!
The bad news is that, compared to last year, the number of accounting jobs in the Top 100 is considerably less. Jobs not making this year’s cut include: Senior Financial Analyst; Finance Director; Senior Internal Auditor; Senior Tax Accountant; Financial Analysis Manager; Financial Controller.
You could chalk this up to semantics (we don’t trust CNN o to anything accounting-related) but it’s entirely possible that there was an overwhelming outcry from people in those positions that are completely miserable.
But that’s neither her nor there. Let’s get to this year’s goods, shall we?
9. CPA (#6 last year) – “Maintain financial records and analyze the numbers. Especially in this time of economic turmoil, CPAs are needed to make sense of increasingly complex financial transactions — from buyouts to businesses grappling with changing tax laws.” Also: Popular target for blamestorming and/or beatdowns, particularly by rich guys, faux-celebrity clients and washed-up athletes.
62. Tax Manager – “Participates in tax planning and research activities. Supervises accounting staff. Oversees tax returns and compliance for corporations, partnerships, trusts, and individuals.” In other words: makes sense of the enigma created by Congress.
69. Accounting Director– “Manages the accounting department’s daily activities. Collects and provides information for audit inquiries and gives assistance to auditors. Assists in the development and implementation of policies and procedures relating to financial management, budget and accounting.” Must have: High tolerability for answering lots of stupid questions.
78. Auditing Manager – “Determines financial status of establishments and prepares financial reports concerning operating procedures. Supervises staff and examines and analyzes accounting records.” Critical skill: Willingness to ask the same awkward questions over and over and over.
19. Accounting Director – $119,000
18. Accounting Director – $169,000
6. Tax Manager (69.6% say their job is secure)
6. Tax Manager (89% say jobs like theirs will grow in the future)
A friend of GC pointed us to the image below from Focus.com (link to entire thing below) that shows the latest “Best Jobs in America”. This particular version ranks CPAs as having the 6th best job in all the land.
The methodology broke down like this:
• Top 260 – Jobs that have been projected to grow 10% in the decade and require a Bachelor’s degree; Median pay below $65k for experienced workers was excluded as were jobs that had less than 10,000 positions nationwide.
• Top 100 – Eliminated jobs that did poorly (based on growth in online wanted ads) during the recession and grouped jobs with similar responsibilities.
• Top 50 – 35,000-ish workers were surveyed to “rat their jobs on quality of life factors such as flexibility, stress, and personal satisfaction.” They were then ranked by “current employment, long-term growth, pay, and security; projected openings; and quality of life factors.”
• Top 10 – “Interviewed industry experts and people in each profession.” Rankings were made based on those interviews.
Our source has some questions for the group, “Why are CPAs always ranked so high? Job security? Pay if you stay in long enough?”
Important questions. It simply could be that the people that put these “Best Jobs Lists” interview the Exuberant Accountant every time. You can’t get that many consistent liars in these surveys can you? Or, maybe, just maybe, lots of CPAs really, honest-to-God — gasp — love their jobs. It’s not that we don’t believe that it’s possible but it’s difficult when you hear constant belly-aching.
So if you’re loving your life as a super hero CPA and you’ve got reasons you feel like sharing with the group, please do so. Or if you’re confused like us and have some wild-ass guesses that will be fine too.
Don’t have enough corporate magazine lists in your life? Didn’t think so. CNN/Money’s Best Jobs in America dropped this morning and lo and behold, CPAs come in at #6.
Seem high? Maybe. CPAs did only receive grades of ‘C’ on “Benefits to Society” (you don’t keep people from dying) and “Low Stress” (‘C’ seems generous).
Also, CPAs only rank in the top ten in “Flexibility” but still managed to sneak into the top ten overall.
Continued, after the jump
Dubious, right? Money still makes their case:
Businesses began stocking the payroll with CPAs after major accounting scandals earlier this decade, and a host of new corporate accounting rules going into effect soon should ratchet up demand further.
Government agencies are also hiring CPAs, to monitor how well companies are complying with the new regs. Add inevitable changes to personal income tax rules and you have a pretty recession-proof profession.
“Unless Congress does away with taxes, we’ll always have work,” says CPA Lisa Featherngill of Winston-Salem, N.C. Some 33,000 independent CPAs also work for themselves, typically as tax preparers.
1. Scandals early in the decade? What about present scandals? Lotta good hiring all those CPAs did.
2. Remind us which agencies are doing a bang up job keeping companies in line with regulations?
3. Oh, and regardless of the certainty of taxes, this happens.
Maybe we’re overreacting. Perhaps they’re pointing out that if you’ve got a CPA, that gives you options (get crackin’ non-CPAs). Regardless of what Grant Thornton’s latest survey says.
So, if you’re a CPA and you’re happy, clap your hands. And discuss the list and why (or why not) being a CPA kicks so much ass.
Best Jobs in America [CNN/Money]