5 Great Careers With a Master’s in Accounting Degree

Master’s in Accounting Degree Careers

  • Actuary
  • Forensic Accountant
  • Auditor
  • Budget Analyst
  • Controller

There are many careers for people with a Master’s in Accounting degree. Master’s degree programs typically take two years to complete beyond a bachelor’s degree. While the required education may seem like a lot of studies, graduates can definitely reap the benefits by joining this field. As the economy continues to grow, people will continue to invest their money, putting a demand on accounting professionals. Here are five great careers with a Master’s in Accounting degree along with potential annual wages and career outlook.

1. Actuary

An actuary is a professional who uses statistics, math and financial theory to analyze the monetary costs of risk and uncertainty. Once they determine the risk potential and how much the risks will cost the company, they develop policies to minimize the risks and help the company become more profitable. Other duties include developing reports, tables and charts; creating, testing and administering pension plans, investments and insurance policies to maximize profitability and minimize loss; compiling and analyzing statistical data; and making proposals or recommendations to management on potential investments. Actuaries earned an average annual wage of $101,560 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2. Forensic Accountant

Forensic accountants are certified accountants who work in the area of forensics and aid in solving money-related crimes. They’re typically hired when there is litigation or disputes regarding missing money. The forensic accountant has many duties, including examining accounts, documenting records, analyzing data, running a forensic investigation and preparing forensic reports for cases. In many cases, the forensic accountant is asked to appear in court to testify as to his or her findings. The average annual wage for forensic accountants in 2017 was $68,150.

3. Auditor

Auditors are categorized in the same group as accountants by the Bureau. They prepare and study financial reports to ensure they’re accurate and precise. They also make sure taxes are computed correctly and paid on time. The auditor’s main goal is to know the financial status of a company and if it’s as profitable as possible. They maintain and organize financial records, inspect accounting books, examine company books to ensure they’re in compliance with regulations and laws, make recommendations to management and meet with other managers. Accountants with Master’s in Accounting degree often take the four part Certified Public Accountant exam. Accountants earn an average annual wage of $69,350.

4. Budget Analyst

Budget analysts oversee and monitor a company’s financial budget, and report the findings to management. Their duties include preparing annual reports, monitoring company spending, reviewing budget proposals, analyzing financial data, utilizing cost-benefit analyses and making budget recommendations to management. Because they have to make their opinions and recommendations to those above them, the budget analyst must have good communication skills. Budget analysts may work in large companies, universities or in government jobs. The average wage for budget analysts is $75,240, according to the Bureau.

5. Controller

Similar to a financial manager, a controller is the professional who oversees the accounting department of a company and is in charge of all its departments, including accounts receivable, accounts payable, reporting, payroll, budgeting and compliance. Working as a controller, or comptroller, is generally accomplished after first gaining experience working as an accountant. A controller may also be referred to as a chief accounting officer. A controller’s job duties may vary depending on if the individual is working for a large company or a small company. If the company is small, the controller may handle cash and risk management, whereas, in a large company, the controller oversees all accountants and all operations. The salary for controllers is $125,080.

Related Resource: The Top 15 Best Affordable Online Master’s in Accounting Degree Programs

Accounting is an excellent career for individuals with a head for numbers and the desire to help others make money and be profitable. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that accounting professionals should experience a job growth of 10 percent from 2016-2026. Working as an accountant is just one of many great careers available with a Master’s in Accounting degree.