Junior Accountant

Updated on January 2, 2024
Edited byAshish Kumar Srivastav
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

What Is A Junior Accountant?

A junior accountant defines an entry-level position for an individual pursuing a career in finance. Accounting firms and accounts departments in the private and public sectors employ junior accountants to prepare financial reports, handle monthly payroll, assemble financial statements, account for receivables and payables, and ensure compliance with legal standards.

What Is a Junior Accountant ?

You are free to use this image on your website, templates, etc, Please provide us with an attribution linkHow to Provide Attribution?Article Link to be Hyperlinked
For eg:
Source: Junior Accountant (wallstreetmojo.com)

The position of a junior accountant officer is a full-time position for an undergraduate or postgraduate candidate starting a career in finance and accounting. Consequently, a degree in accounting, finance, mathematics, or any related field becomes a prerequisite for applying for this position. In addition, professional and proficient knowledge of accounting software and tools increases the chances of being hired. 

Key Takeaways

  • A junior accountant is an entry-level position for a potential candidate aspiring to establish a career in finance, accounting, and business analytics.
  • This position is available at various organizational levels, such as private companies, government departments, or non-profit organizations, to manage and maintain the accuracy of financial records. 
  • A candidate’s basic qualification for this role is a bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting or business administration, mathematics, etc. 
  • Thus, the responsibilities include preparing financial statements, reports, accounting payables, and receivables, paying monthly payrolls and journal entries, and compliance with tax laws per the legal framework. 

Accounting for Financial Analyst (16+ Hours Video Series)

–>> p.s. – Want to take your financial analysis to the next level? Consider our “Accounting for Financial Analyst” course, featuring in-depth case studies of McDonald’s and Colgate, and over 16 hours of video tutorials. Sharpen your skills and gain valuable insights to make smarter investment decisions.

Junior Accountant Explained 

A junior accountant job title is an entry-level position in an accounting or auditing firm or a government department. The job is prospective for a candidate aiming to pursue a career in finance, accounting, auditing, or related fields. 

A manager or head of the department supervises the junior accountant as a reporting manager. A manager assigns the tasks per their capabilities and training to the beginner. The training allows entry-level accountants or beginners to accustom themselves to a company’s processes, culture, work ethics, and accounting practices.

An ideal candidate shall have swift learning abilities, especially as the finance and accounting industry is rapidly being dominated by IT tools and software, alongside the required qualifications. Thus, a potential candidate with a knack for learning specialized software or enterprise resource planning systems (ERP) shall thrive in such a role. These qualities can help a beginner grab growth opportunities and a competitive junior accountant salary at a faster pace.

An accountant audits every penny into a financial statement or a monthly, quarterly, or yearly report. Thus, a junior-level accountant has to be extremely proactive in coordinating entries from vendors and various departments. Concurrently, they also maintain inventory records, ensure monthly payrolls, analyze bank statements, and tally client ledgers.

A junior accountant’s role is diverse, requiring an accountant to have vivid knowledge of the industry besides well-built accounting principles. This background knowledge is handy when building strategies and decisions around investments and expenditures. Similarly, rigorous accounting and auditing help an organization maintain accurate financial records and stable finances.

Qualifications 

The qualifications for junior accountant jobs include the following, 

  1. Bachelor’s Degree – This qualification is a prerequisite to landing a job as a junior accountant at any organization. Thus, a degree of BBA, B.Sc., or a B.A. in accounting, finance, mathematics, etc., is relevant. 
  2. Additional diplomas and examinations – The designation certified management accountant (CMA) highlights expertise in financial accounting and management proficiency. Similarly, clearing various levels of Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exams provides excellent professional growth opportunities for a junior accountant. 
  3. Work Experience – Some organizations particularly look for candidates with work or internship experience in finance. Such a qualification also allows a candidate to negotiate for a higher salary. 
  4. Soft skills – These are personality traits that help a junior accountant thrive. Thus, a potential candidate’s cover letter should mention qualities such as strong ethics, proactive, problem-solving, excellent organizational skills, analytical acumen, techno-savvy, etc. 
  5. Hard skills – Define the knowledge and technical skills that an employee or a candidate should possess. These include software know-how like MS Office, especially MS Excel, or ERP software like SAP systems. Moreover, candidates can increase their chances of getting hired by being well-versed in accounting principles. 

Responsibilities of Junior Accountant

The junior accountant job description may differ from organization to organization depending on their methods, business models, work timings, industry practices, etc. However, some fundamental day-to-day roles and responsibilities include,

  1. Firstly is understanding the process and methods of an organization through training and observations, wherein attention to numbers and details is a must.
  2. Preparing financial statements as per a company’s calendar
  3. Invoicing and billing for daily, weekly, and monthly transactions
  4. Ensuring compliance of reporting and taxation with legal framework or government guidelines 
  5. Facilitating monetary transactions for various departments of a company
  6. Processing and maintaining journal entries
  7. Paying monthly payrolls and accounting for payroll taxes
  8. Auditing accounts payable and ensuring accounts for receivables, 
  9. Reconcile vendor payments and client ledgers for dues, if any. 
  10. Identifying the intricacies of different client accounts.

Example

For instance, Paul, who has recently completed his BBA degree, now wishes to pursue a career in financial accounting. Paul drew his inspiration to become an accountant from his mother, who is also a professional accountant and is always enthusiastic about dealing with numbers. However, after reading various mediums to generate adequate knowledge about the profession, Paul realizes that this industry has evolved rapidly through the decades since his mother’s time as a beginner. 

Speaking of finance and accounting in 2021, it has become increasingly technology-based, increasing transparency, accuracy, and digitization in the profession. 

Thus, Paul gains an increasing interest in pursuing this profession as he acknowledges and understands the role of an accountant as a traditional record keeper while at the same time being a strategic analyst and advisor. 

To point out, the development of cloud systems such as ERP software has transformed the role of even a junior accountant beyond manual number crunching to more analytics. This transition has also helped businesses and companies to thrive with faster decision-making. 

Additionally, according to a survey, a career in accounting and financial management is likely to see a 15% increase over the next decade. Further, financial analytical skills that help a company reduce costs and multiply its profitability will dominate the industry. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. How much does a junior accountant earn? 

The average salary for this position in the U.S. is around $52,227 per year. It has an upper limit of $69,864 with a minimum of $39,042 per annum.

2. What does a junior accountant do? 

The role of a junior accountant is the start of the career for someone aiming to pursue a career in finance, accounting, business analytics, etc. Thus, as a beginner, a junior accountant must deal with many manual crunching numbers and information into financial statements, preparing reports, and maintaining accounts, payables, receivables, etc. Additionally, the evolving role of technology in finance and accounting has increasingly made the role more of analytics, data interpretation, and strategizing.

3. How to become a junior accountant?

The basic qualification to become a junior is a bachelor’s degree of 3-4 years in finance, accounting, mathematics, business administration, etc. While some big companies, such as the Fortune 500, may also prefer a postgraduate suitable for the role. Additionally, a candidate with prior work experience in similar fields will have a higher chance of getting hired at a company of their choice. Moreover, designation and certifications like CFA or CMA bring an edge of proficiency and expertise and help one stand out from the crowd.

This article is a guide to What is Junior Accountant. Here, we explain its qualifications, roles and responsibilities along with an example. You can also go through our recommended articles on corporate finance –

Reader Interactions

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *