Accounting technician career

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Jane Riley is training to be an accounting technician at College in Durham. She is a residential student and studies full time, following the curriculum set out by the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT).

What does your accounting technician training involve?

I have to carry out several tasks such as double entry book keeping and trial balances. This involves logging payments and receipts into the correct ledger and books, so that everything adds up correctly. The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) training will enable me to achieve my Foundation Level AAT Accounting Qualification. I am building up a portfolio of evidence for the qualification.

When do you go to college?

I am a residential student, so I stay at the college during the week and work normal office hours, from 8.30am to 5.00pm. The whole college is run on a short weekend and long weekend basis. During week one, we work from Monday to Friday and during week two, we work Monday to Thursday. This second week allows us more time to get home, as some students have to travel quite a distance. In addition to general study, I'm on a weekly rota to fulfil a number of duties at the college. These include dealing with petty cash, health and safety, security, stock, visitors and telephone calls.

What equipment do you use?

I use a calculator and a computer with spreadsheet, word processing and accounting software packages.

What is your training environment like?

The accounts training room I work in is modelled on a normal office. An instructor sets us tasks as if we were in a working office. I work alongside other students who are also studying towards the same qualifications.

What personal qualities and skills do you need for a accounting technician career?

You need to be good with figures and confident using computers to be an accounting technician. You must also have good communication skills and be able to work as part of a team.

Why did you choose to become an accounting technician?

I did some part-time work in this field and it really interested me. I enjoy accounting because I like working with numbers and computers, and I like meeting and dealing with a wide range of people. I also relish the challenge of balancing the books, which includes finding any mistakes and rectifying them.

How do you see your accounting technician career developing?

I would like to gain as many accountancy qualifications as possible and maybe even run my own accountancy business when I have enough experience.

Jane's route to becoming a accounting technician

  • GCSEs.
  • NVQ Level 2 in Business Administration at college.
  • Worked in the leisure industry and worked part time in general business accounting.
  • Took up current role at residential training college.

Jane's accounting technician tips

  • Make sure that you enjoy working with numbers.
  • Research the accounting training programmes and centres that are available and pick the best one to suit your needs.
  • Aim as high as possible in your chosen field of accountancy.

Accounting technician related jobs

  • Accounts/finance clerk
  • Auditor
  • Industry and commerce accountant
  • Insurance technician
  • Private practice accountant
  • Public sector accountant

Salary of an accounting technician

  • Salaries vary depending on the area and the company.
  • AAT student members who have achieved the Foundation/Certificate stage of the qualification earn about £14,000 to £17,000.
  • At Intermediate/Advanced Certificate stage, the figure rises to around £15,000 to £18,000.
  • Those who have achieved the AAT Technician/Diploma stage can earn £16,000 to £22,000, or more.

Accounting technician career

  • There are no formal qualifications required to enter the work, but employers prefer GCSEs/S grades (A-C/1-3) in English and maths.
  • You need to train for an accounting technician qualification. The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) offer these qualifications. You can train part time, full time or by distance learning. Most people choose to train part time while working. Training may also lead to NVQs/SVQs in Accounting.

Modified: 16 June 2013

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