RYAN KRISTJANSON - ACCOUNTING

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ACCOUNTING



ACCOUNTING TODAY

What is the role of accounting in a typical business?

The accountant of a business is there assure that all the funds are organized and reported according to federal/international standards. The accountant is to maintain the books of the financial transactions of the company; this is accomplished by audits and other means.

What are the projections for jobs in accounting of the next few years and beyond?
What are where are the opportunities?

"Everyone needs an accountant. Every company has[/needs] one. So you could work for anyone anywhere. So if I wanted to go and live in Nebraska, I’m sure I could find a job in about two weeks. So, you could go and work for any industry that’s of a descent size."

                                                                                   -Ben Canland (Accounting Mentor)-

What are the key trends, developments, and challenges?

As Globalization is continuing to bloom in the sunlight of the modern market, countries are developing firms and boards that are standardizing and setting rules for accountants. There are attempts to have an internation standard.



What are the opportunites for career growth?

"They say your salary in public accounting is supposed to double every seven years. So, if you think about it, if you come in making $45K after a while you’d be making 90. Then another seven years you’d be making 180. A partner at an accounting firm has probably been there for 13 years is pulling out about $250K or more. But, you’re also facing risk, Right? If you’re a partner and you get sued… you could lose a lot of money."

                                                                                   -Ben Canland (Accounting Mentor)-


KEY ACCOUNTING TERMS

Balance Sheet: A document or statement that displays the finances (assets and liabilites) of a company, firm, or personal account

Income Statement: A document or statement that summarizes the earnings - revenue and income - and the expesses of a company, firm or personal account

Statement of Cash Flow: A document or statement that displays the money spent and recieved over a period of time - typically monthly or quarterly

Assets: That which is in the possession of a corporation or person. There are four kinds: fixed, current, intangible, and liquid. Fixed assets consist of real estate, buildings, machinery, equipment, etc... Current assests include stocks, investments, cash and money owned. Intangible assests consists of goodwill, trade marks, patents, etc... Liquid Assests are items, funds, or other investments that can quickly be turned into cash.

Liabilities: That which is a quantity of money that is owed to another entity. Examples or liabilities are mortgage payments, taxes, debts, interest, etc...

Owners Equity: The amount of money which is the difference of assets and liabilities - the owners investment.

Net Income: The amount of money earned or profited after other expenses are deducted from that quantity. (Gross - Expenses = Net)

Revenue: The money recieved due to the selling of goods, services, or obtained by fees, or other charges


ACCOUNTING CAREERS

1. Auditor

2. Budget Analysist

3. Taxes

4. CFO

5. Financial advisor


ACCOUNTING MENTOR:

Ben Candland
Public Accountant for KPMG
Portland, OR



Interview:

Q: What are your projections for this type of work or industry? Is it stable, growing, declining?

A: It’s definitely high demand. When I was at BYU, my professor said that the accounting path has the fastest path to executive positions. You could become a CFO in ten years.

 

Q: Are there any new developments?

A: There was that whole big accounting fraud case with Enron, so the Congress pass this law that Accounting firms have to follow. They really notched up our work.

As far development, it is constantly changing because the rules change all the time – every year. There’s not necessarily new software that comes out, but the nature is changing. Especially we are going more global. The US is changing to an international standard. There’s a standard setting board named FASP (Financial Accounting Standards Board). Those are the players that are making the rules as we go. And they are trying to get more international because the market is more international. It’s hard to compare the financial of, say, a French company from an American Company since we are so different in our rules. So, they are trying to make it standardized.

 

Q: What are some Challenges?

A: Tough hours when near deadlines. If you are in taxes, the your most demanding times are January, February, & March.

(Just the other night he stayed at work until 10pm)

 

Q: What and where are the opportunities?

A: Well, pretty much, everyone needs an accountant. Every company has one. So you could work for anyone anywhere. So if I wanted to go and live in Nebraska, I’m sure I could find a job in about two weeks. So, you could go and work for any industry that’s of a descent size.

 

Q: What are typical salaries in this type of job, entry-level to experienced?

A: There are two main segments – public and private. Public is my stuff, where I’m an “accountant for hire.” Private is where you go work for John Deer, Ford, or a certain company like Costco. So, if you go straight out of college with a four year degree and you go into private I say you are at least in the $30K-40K range, starting. It’s about the same for public.

They say your salary in public accounting is supposed to double every seven years. So, if you think about it, if you come in making $45K after a while you’d be making 90. Then another seven years you’d be making 180. A partner at an accounting firm has probably been there for 13 years is pulling out about $250K or more. But, you’re also facing risk, Right? If you’re a partner and you get sued… you could lose a lot of money.

 

Q: How did you get involved in this work?

A: I was a business major at BYU, I then I transferred to BYU. Originally I was going to do business Finance, because it sounded more “wealthy.” Then I went to the career counselor, and he told me, “You should really think about accounting. There are some big advantages. Its more challenging and technical but you have a lot better career advancements.” Besides, BYU was rated one of the top 3 schools in accounting. So I changed it. I never really grasped how big the program was until all the recruiter came and tried to wine and dine you to hire you. Anyways, that how I got into it - recruiters came and we interviewed.

 

Q: What’s a typical day like for you or someone in a similar position?

A: 8am -5pm -5:30pm, Monday to Friday. Around deadlines, you could work up to seven. I work occasionally Saturdays. I’ll probably work, 40 hours a week throughout the summer. Then in January, February, March, you stay out ‘til seven, but then once you get more responsibilities you’ll work ‘til 9pm, and 8 hour Saturdays.

That’s not a super amount; there are other jobs like doctors, bankers, or New York finance people who work a lot more than we do.

They also try to compensate by being really flexible, such as giving a lot of vacation time.  I started with five weeks of paid vacation then three weeks after a while. They are also really flexible as far as employees working out of home.

 

Q: What do you like most about your work? What do you like least?

A: I like the challenge and the growth - there are a lot of projects and deadlines. I like meeting the people because I have clients that I work with. It’s nice not to be in the same rut; it’s not the same people day in and day out. I work with a lot of different people. But I work with them often enough I don’t feel like just strangers.  You get to be friends with a client, you work with them for a while, you slug it out, and then it’s been grueling and you’re ready to move on and you go to a different client for two to three months before you see them again. I like that.

The things I don’t like are that there is a lot of variety; it’s a little bit too much variety sometimes. You are thrown some clients at the last minute and you don’t really know what’s going on. There are a lot of deadlines and projects that come due, and so the late nights aren’t as fun. It can get challenging and tiring.


RESOURCES

http://www.njmandco.com.au/definitions.html

http://www.nationalexpressgroup.com/nx1/investor/share_services/industry_glossary/inv_terms/

Industry Projections