Accounts Receivable ClerkJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends

Accounts receivable clerks play a vital role in assuring their organization’s bottom line, and in helping manage and process incoming payments to their company from customers and clients.

This critical role is essential in balancing everything out for the company, tracking budgets, monitoring incoming credit accounts, and securing payments from debtors.

If you are detail and number-oriented and have strong time management and communication skills, accounts receivable clerk may be a great position in which you can grow.

Sample job description

The accounts receivable clerk is responsible for maintaining the accuracy of the company’s accounts receivable records. They will ensure that all payments are entered and documented correctly, and will work with customers and management to resolve any billing issues. The accounts receivable clerk is also responsible for various tasks related to the billing cycle. These include resolving discrepancies between invoices and payment receipts, preparing invoices and other billing documents, and maintaining accurate customer records. They must also be able to effectively communicate with customers and management in order to resolve any billing issues. The ideal candidate for this position has excellent customer service skills, is proficient in computer usage, and has at least one year of experience in an accounts receivable role.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Process incoming payments in compliance with financial policies and procedures
  • Reconcile the accounts receivable ledger to ensure that all payments are accounted for and correctly posted
  • Generate financial statements and reports detailing the accounts receivable status
  • Audit ledgers to ensure they contain the correct information, such as billing addresses and invoice numbers
  • Initiate collections on past-due accounts
  • Communicate with clients about billing discrepancies and questions

Education and experience

This position requires a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, or a related discipline.

Required skills and qualifications

  • Solid understanding of accounting, fair credit practices, and collection regulation
  • Proven ability to calculate, post and manage accounting figures and financial records
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office and accounting software
  • Data entry skills along with a knack for numbers
  • A high degree of accuracy and attention to detail
  • Excellent communication and problem-solving skills

Preferred qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting
  • Minimum one year of experience in accounts receivable
  • Exceptional customer service skills
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • Proficient computer skills, including Microsoft Office Suite
  • Knowledge of accounts receivable software

Average salary and compensation

The average salary for an accounts receivable clerk is $40,000 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.

LocationSalary LowSalary High
Phoenix, Arizona$39,800$53,800
Los Angeles, California$44,900$60,700
Denver, Colorado$37,400$50,600
Washington, DC$45,550$61,650
Miami, Florida$37,250$50,350
Orlando, Florida$34,350$46,450
Tampa, Florida$34,700$46,900
Atlanta, Georgia$36,400$49,200
Chicago, Illinois$41,800$56,600
Boston, Massachusetts$45,200$61,200
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota$36,050$48,750
New York City, New York$47,600$64,400
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania$38,750$52,450
Dallas, Texas$37,750$51,050
Houston, Texas$37,400$50,600
Seattle, Washington$43,500$58,900
National Average$34,000$46,000

Typical work environment

The accounts receivable clerk typically works in an office environment and may be required to work overtime depending on the company’s needs.

The job of an accounts receivable clerk is to ensure that all payments are entered and documented correctly. They also work with customers and management to resolve any billing issues.

Typical hours

The typical work hours for an accounts receivable clerk can be from 9 AM to 5 PM, Monday through Friday, in an office setting. However, longer or different hours can be necessary, depending on the needs and hours of an individual company.

Available certifications

Though it’s not required to have a certain certification for this position, some may choose to receive one so they can stand out from the rest of the applicants. A popular certification is:

  • The Certified Public Accountant (CPA). The CPA designation identifies accounting professionals who meet eligibility requirements, including passing a rigorous examination. CPAs are licensed to provide assurance services, such as audits and reviews, as well as other attest services.

Career path

The first step in becoming an accounts receivable clerk is to earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, or a related discipline. Beyond that, candidates can gain skills and accreditation by earning accounting certifications like IOFM Accounts Receivable Certification.

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

The accounts receivable field is continually evolving. Rather than regarded as a back-office function, accounts receivable departments are beginning to be thought of in a more strategically important way than in the past. As well as depending on this department for its traditional function, companies will be looking to accounts receivable departments to supply essential data.

Sample interview questions

  • What is the most difficult customer interaction you have had?
  • How do you handle billing disputes?
  • What are some of the common accounting principles that you are familiar with?
  • Describe your experience in an accounts receivable role.
  • What computer software programs are you confident using?
  • What are some of the common mistakes you see customers making?
  • How do you ensure you are accurate when entering client information into an accounting system?
  • What do you think is the most important attribute for someone in this role?
  • How would you describe your customer service style?
  • What do you find most challenging in this role?
  • Why did you choose to pursue a career in accounts receivable?
  • How would you describe your experience working with numbers?
  • What do you think are the most important skills for someone in this role?

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