5 Growing Subfields in Accounting

5 Expanding Accounting Fields

  • Human Resources Accounting
  • Cost Accounting
  • Financial Accounting
  • Management Accounting
  • Social Responsibility Accounting

Subfields in accounting allow accounting majors to pursue occupations outside the traditional realm of bookkeeping. From human resources and cost accounting to management and social responsibility accounting, there are many great subfields for accounting majors to choose from. Five subfields in accounting that are growing in popularity today are discussed in the sections that follow.

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

1. Human Resources Accounting

One subfield in accounting that is growing in popularity today is human resources. Human resources are the most important resources of any organization, and the focus of human resources accounting is to determine the costs that are associated with the recruitment, training and development of an organization’s staff. HR accounting also calculates the depreciation and/or appreciation of staff, which can help management monitor the efficiency and effectiveness of their staff members and teams. This type of accounting was developed in the 1960s to help businesses make better decisions pertaining to human resources.

2. Cost Accounting

Cost accounting is a growing subfield of accounting that examines the costs associated with factors necessary to run an organization. These factors typically include job positions, products, services, and/or processes. Cost accounting helps to control costs by allocating company funds to each appropriate factor in the organization. By examining exact costs, cost accountants can also determine which areas could be cut to reduce waste and increase profits. Other valuable uses of cost accounting include helping to determine pricing for products and services, calculating break-even points, and helping to create and control budgets.

3. Financial Accounting

The most common subfield of accounting is financial accounting. And while this type of accounting has been around for a very long time, there is an ever-growing concern to maintain proper financial accounting to ensure that it adheres to the standards set by the Financial Accounting Standards Board. Financial accounting basically involves the preparation and maintenance of an organization’s accounts and financial statements. It also helps to determine the company’s financial position by calculating profits or losses for the year and provides important financial information to shareholders, creditors, and tax agencies.

4. Management Accounting

In simple terms, management accounting is a fast-growing subfield of accounting that provides financial information that is useful for management-level professionals in organizations. This usually includes such things as financial reports, budgets, or detailed accounts that can help managers in the areas of decision-making, planning, and coordinating. In this form of accounting, financial information is categorized and presented in such a way that makes it easy for managers to understand and assess. For example, top-level managers may need more detailed information whereas lower-level managers may simply need percentages of certain calculated information.

5. Social Responsibility Accounting

Another subfield in accounting that is growing in popularity with both large and small businesses is social responsibility accounting. For businesses to be successful, they must pay attention to their target market’s needs as well as the needs of their community as a whole. To show their concern for their community, organizations often participate in variouscommunity-related activities and events. Social responsibility accounting involves keeping track of the costs associated with these activities and events, and keeping open records of this accounting to show their concern for the community where they most often operate.

The field of accounting offers many different job positions outside of traditional bookkeeping. And for people who are looking for subfields in accounting that are currently growing in demand, the five subfields described above are among the most popular today.