Accounting ClerkJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends

Accounting Clerks labor in the financial department of a company or non profit in order to ensure that all clerical work for proper accounting practices is being performed. A typical day’s work will include delivering paperwork and documents, running reports, talking to clients regarding finances, and updating records. Typically, accounting clerks have a fast-paced work environment and must be skilled in multitasking, prioritizing, time management, and be able to perform efficiently under pressure with extreme accuracy. 

Due to the time sensitivity and privacy of financial documents, they must be trustworthy and have excellent verbal and written communication skills. Accounting clerks will need to properly communicate with other employees and clients about deadlines and sensitive material contained in financial documents. If you have these skills, you could be a good match for becoming an accounting clerk.

Sample job description

As our new Accounting Clerk, you will be working in the financial department of our company to assist in overseeing our financial documents and financial data. We will rely on you to find patterns or inconsistencies that can be made more efficient and cost effective within our expenditures. Some of your most commons tasks will include reviewing and organizing financial documents, working with our accounting software to find improvements in overhead spending and improve our bottom line, ensuring accounting laws and regulations are being followed as a company, submitting invoices, verifying receipts are accurate, conversing with clients regarding financial documents, and maintaining great financial records to protect from misuse or illegal use of funds. This is why having a high level of integrity is a must. If you possess these qualities and are looking for a fast-paced work environment where you will truly make a difference and hold a high level of responsibility, you could be the perfect fit for our open position at [Your Company Name]. 

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Review the company’s financial records and make the adjustments needed 
  • Keep the financial records organized
  • Run quarterly financial reports for management and present them 
  • Document financial transactions
  • Submit invoices 
  • Verify receipts 
  • Stay in contact with the clients
  • Deliver documents containing sensitive information
  • Integrate annual audits

Education and experience

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting or business preferred

Required skills and qualifications

  • Must be technically competent and have familiarity with accounting software as most of the work is done on the computer
  • Know the laws applicable to accounting and make sure your clients follow them 
  • Knowledge of Intuit QuickBooks
  • Strong mathematical skills
  • Technically competent
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office 
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Detail-oriented 
  • Data management 
  • Integrity 
  • Ability to direct and implement policies 
  • Work well under pressure

Preferred qualifications

  • Account or bookkeeping certifications
  • Associate’s or bachelor’s degree in finance

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for an Accounting Clerk is $38,900 per year in the United State. Salary will vary based on experience, location, and company size.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$38,650$52,340
Los Angeles, California$43,650$59,050
Denver, Colorado$36,372$49,200
Washington, DC$44,300$59,950
Miami, Florida$36,200$49,000
Orlando, Florida$33,400$45,200
Tampa, Florida$33,750$45,650
Atlanta, Georgia$35,350$47,850
Chicago, Illinois$40,650$55,000
Boston, Massachusetts$44,000$59,500
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$35,050$47,400
New York City, New York$46,300$62,650
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$37,700$51,000
Dallas, Texas$36,700$49,650
Houston, Texas$36,550$49,450
Seattle, Washington$44,300$57,250
National Average$38,700$44,750

Typical work environment

Accounting clerks typically work in an office setting as they do most of their work on a computer. When accounting clerks are not at their desks, they are meeting with clients, either in their own offices or at the clients’ offices.

Typical hours

Working hours of an accounting clerk are typically full-time, Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM. During their peak times, like tax season, end of the fiscal year, or during accounting audit periods, they may work longer hours and even through the weekend.

Available certifications

Though an accounting clerk may be considered an entry-level position, getting certifications is a good way to show you’re serious about your career and also provide you with better knowledge. Here are the most popular certifications for accounting clerks:

  • Certified Tax Preparer. To become a certified tax preparer, you will need at least 18 credits from an accredited university. Then, you will need to take an exam and pass it. Each year, you’ll need to complete continuing education credits.
  • Certified Public Bookkeeper (CPB). The CPB certification shows that you have the knowledge, skills, and ethics needed to be an accountant. To get this certification, you’ll need to pass the four-part exam, have an associate’s or bachelor’s in accounting, have at least 2,000 hours of bookkeeping experience, and agree to abide by a code of professional conduct.
  • Certified Management Accountant (CMA). This certification demonstrates competency and can also raise hourly wages as it appeals to employers. To obtain this certification, you have to possess a bachelor’s degree, pass a licensing exam, and keep up to date with continuing education credits.

Career path

In order to become an accounting clerk, you need a high school diploma or equivalent. While you can still qualify with just a high school diploma, many places will prefer you to have either an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in accounting, business, or finance. Any relevant job experience with accounting is applicable. 

US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook

SOC Code: 43-3031

2020 Employment1,620,000
Projected Employment in 20301,571,900
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift 3% decrease
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift48,100 decrease

Technology has advanced so much that they have now developed software that can complete tasks that your average bookkeeper used to do. Therefore, the industry needs fewer of those bookkeepers leading to a decline of jobs in the next 10 years. 

Despite the decline, there will still be hundreds of thousands of job openings related to accounting available each year. Those job openings are a result of people leaving their job, changing careers, and those who are retiring. Obtaining certifications will help you retain your job and stand out from the rest of the crowd.

Sample interview questions

  • Which accounting software programs have you used and which do you prefer to use? 
  • How do you protect the clients’ personal information? And what do you consider confidential information?
  • What are the accounting clerk’s duties in a company?
  • What do you enjoy most about being a bookkeeper?
  • There are times where you will be required to meet multiple deadlines for different clients. How do you handle those situations?
  • What would your goals be here at [Your Company Name]?
  • We want to ensure minimal errors in our reports. How do you ensure data accuracy? 
  • Do you have any certifications related to accounting?
  • What qualities do you believe make a good accounting clerk?
  • Are you familiar with ERP systems?
  • What is reconciliation in accounting?

Are You Interested in Becoming an Accounting Clerk?

If you’re interested in a career as an accounting clerk, we will be glad to connect you to one of our headhunters or recruiters to see if you would be a perfect fit for one of our open positions. If a position does not suit you, we will always keep you in mind as new jobs become available. We have a tremendous amount of experience matching professionals with some of the most well-known organizations in the country. Your next job as an accounting clerk can be right around the corner. Check out our latest job openings and our blog for career advice.

Similar Job Titles and Careers

  • Bookkeeper
  • Accountant
  • Auditor
  • Billing Clerk 
  • Accounts Payable Clerk 
  • Accounts Receivable Clerk

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