Finance is at the heart of most businesses, and a career in Accountancy and/or Finance can prove to be a challenging but rewarding career path. Graduates trained with a degree in Accounting have many options to work in Finance as well as other sectors.

What can an Accounting Graduate do?

The obvious path for an Accounting graduate is to pursue a career as an Accountant, as they will have been trained with all the required skills and knowledge to fulfil the demands of a position as Trainee Accountant with the small firms right up to the Big Four. Many of the bigger firms offer graduate schemes or jobs which allow successful applicants to train professionally and become Chartered Accountants or Management Accountants.

The skills acquired doing an Accounting degree aren't only applicable to a career in Tax, Accounts, Banking, or even Finance. Being competent with numbers, managing data and keeping organised and on-task are all extremely versatile skills. Graduates from Accounting can go on to rewarding careers in Business roles such as Management, Sales, Retail and Human Resources.

Source HECSU - What do graduates do? 2013.

Taking Stock of Skills

Accounting graduates have many skills to offer employers:

Business awareness - Accounting graduates are fully aware of business practices and functions. They know what is required to run an efficient business and how every role works together.

Communication - Like all graduates, Accounting students will have spent at least three years writing essays and constructing presentations. These communication skills are applicable to the business world, where effective and appropriate communication between colleagues, clients and other parties is essential. This includes both verbal and written communication.

Numeracy skills - Accounting graduates are extremely competent with maths, and should be able to demonstrate how a skill with numbers applies to real life business dealings. Whether it is working on budgets or negotiating prices with clients and customers, graduates from Accounting programmes have an awareness of what it takes to work the numbers.

Problem solving - Whether it is overcoming a budget shortfall or rearranging deals to reach a target outcome, Accounting graduates have the required skills and knowledge to deal with problems. This lateral thinking can go long way to helping graduates secure their first job.