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What is an Assistant Accountant? The School Leaver Guide

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What is an Assistant Accountant?

The role of an assistant accountant within a business is to support an accountant, finance department and a management team by completing routine accounting and clerical tasks.

What does an Assistant Accountant do?

The daily responsibilities of an assistant accountant will vary depending on the nature of the organisation they work for. A typical working day might include:


  • Processing business expenses

  • Managing ledgers

  • Completing purchase orders

  • Budgeting

  • Managing day-to-day transactions

  • The verification of bank deposits

  • Preparing VAT returns

  • Raising invoices

  • Reporting on debtors and creditors

  • Resolving errors in financial reports and correcting faulty reporting methods

  • Validating balances in account books and rectifying discrepancies

  • Recording office expenditures and ensuring these expenses are within the set budget

  • Encoding accounting entries for data processing

  • Posting daily receipts

  • Completing the required year-end analysis

  • Management of payroll

  • Creating and updating financial reports

  • Handling accruals and prepayments

  • Completing bank reconciliations

  • Preparing financial documents

  • Data entry

  • Working with financial software programmes

Skills & interests required for an Assistant Accountant

Assistant accountants need to have a range of personal and professional skills. They need to be good with numbers and adept at using Microsoft Excel and also different accounting software packages.

Working hours

Assistant accountants usually work 9am-5pm from Monday until Friday and typically average around 37–40 hours per week. Overtime may be expected at busy periods, for example: at the end of the financial year.

Work base

Assistant accountants are based within an office.

Travel

At times, the role of an assistant accountants might include out of the office training and appointments.

Salary ranges & earning potential

Assistant accountant salaries vary between different industries and organisations. However, an assistant accountant can expect a starting salary of between £25,000 and £27,000 per annum.

Perks & benefits

Many employers will offer full or partial sponsorship to complete accountancy qualifications.

Education requirements

Most assistant accountants are graduates although a degree is not always necessary. Some enter the profession using alternative qualifications such as an accounting technician qualification (AAT), although employers will look for a minimum of 5 GSCEs including English and maths, and potentially Finance or Business-related A-levels. KPMG are currently recruiting apprentices.

Useful subjects to study at school


  • Bookkeeping

  • Finance

  • Business Studies

  • Accountancy

  • Maths

Useful resources

International Federation of Accountants
Association of Accounting Technicians
Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
Association of Chartered Certified Accountants

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