Accountants manage money. You need to be good with numbers to do this job.

What does an accountant do?

Accountants manage money. You’ll deal with financial reporting, budgeting, pay, purchasing, procurement and tax. In some companies, you may also audit financial figures. 

As an accountant, you can specialise in different types of accountancy:

  • management accounting involves forecasting and cost reporting based on a budget – this is a forward looking function
  • financial accounting involves creating statements for shareholders based on historical information
  • tax accountants advise businesses and self-employed individuals how to complete their tax forms

You’ll need to have a high level of numeracy skills and sound analytical abilities. 

What do I need to do to become an accountant?

You do not need a degree to do accountancy, though in some areas it is desirable. You do not need to have taken specific BTECs or A levels, though maths and economics are considered advantageous.

There are a range of different qualifications you can take to become an accountant. The AAT qualification is the minimal level of qualification required for most kinds of accountancy. You can then choose to take higher level qualifications like the ACA, ACCA or CIMA, which will allow you to become a chartered accountant. 

Related skills

  • Analytics
  • Numeracy

Related subjects

  • Business studies
  • Maths

Essential qualifications

  • AAT (foundation qualification)
  • Or ACA
  • Or ACCA
  • Or CIMA

Desirable qualifications

  • A level maths
  • A level economics
  • BTEC business studies

Where to find out more

Where could I be working?

You may be working for yourself, in a small business or for a large global company.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

Job families