Most people think that an accountant is needed by a business for maintaining its account books properly. This is the primary function that all such professionals perform but there are different types of accountants with various job descriptions. A startup owner in India will look to hire an accountant to get assistance in auditing or financial reporting. There are numerous other tasks for a business that a qualified professional can do. A chartered accountant firm in India can provide valuable guidance to companies in running their operations efficiently besides helping them manage their finances. In this article, we will present information about different kinds of accountants that can be needed by a corporation.
1. Certified Public Accountant
A person earns the qualification of a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) after successfully negotiating a rigorous screening procedure. These individuals are considered to be knowledgeable advisors who can provide strategic guidance to a business. CPAs are governed by a code of ethics and can be banked upon for sensible advice in taxation, auditing, bookkeeping, forensic auditing, and managerial accounting. A CPA is an invaluable asset for financial planning at any commercial organization. When an enterprise hires a chartered accountant in India holding a CPA degree, it will be assured of sound financial planning.
Accountants acting as auditors play a key role in ensuring that the financial records of an institution are accurate. Not only commercial establishments but even non-profit organizations need the help of an auditor to prove the accuracy of their records. The legal regulations in most jurisdictions necessitate that an annual financial audit is conducted in all organizations to verify their correctness. A company will engage a CA agency to get independent auditors who will analyze its accounts and prepare an audit report. This report is a part of legal compliance that all businesses need to maintain every financial year.
3. Government Accountant
As is evident from the term itself government accountants are hired by the government at the federal, state as well as local level. Like any other organization, the government also needs to keep track of how its money is being spent and invested. These individuals are responsible for the wise handling of public money collected from taxpayers. Tax authorities and even investigating agencies rely on the knowledge of these professionals to discharge their duties. They manage the revenue earned by the government, manage audits and also investigate financial frauds.
4. Forensic Accountant
The most interesting job description among all the different types of accountants is that of the forensic accountant. These professionals are engaged by government agencies as well as private entities like banks and insurance companies to investigate and assess financial evidence to establish whether a fraud has occurred or not. They can be asked to testify in courts as an expert witness. The demand for such experts is increasing and a lot of chartered accountants in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, and Gurgaon which are key business centers of India, are qualified forensic professionals.
5. Management Accountant
Management accountants or corporate accountants are hired by companies to handle their company’s finances and strategy. Some important tasks performed by these individuals are budget planning, tax management, risk management, and profit analysis. They use the information available to them to provide strategic input to the organization which relies on them for planning for the future. They play a vital role in ensuring the financial security of their enterprise. These individuals prepare all the important documents needed for financial reporting such as cash flow statements and balance sheets.
6. Cost Accountant
Another professional who plays a major role in increasing the profit margins of an enterprise is the cost accountant. In simple terms, this person can be described as the individual responsible for determining the actual cost of making a product or providing a service. They arrive at the final price after calculating all the expenses involved in the process like those related to raw materials, labor, transportation, manufacturing, and other activities. Cost accountants are instrumental in improving the financial efficiency of an organization as the assessment done by them is used by decision-makers to reduce the costs of different processes.
7. Investment Accountant
Investment accountants are usually found in asset management and brokerage agencies where they work with stocks, bonds, futures, currencies, and other investment instruments. They ensure that the investment made by a client of the agency is compliant with applicable legal regulations. Asset managers or stockbrokers of their firms also rely on them for advice. These individuals help frame the overall financial strategy of their agency which impacts their profitability.
8. Project Accountant
Companies appoint accountants for projects they undertake to manage its invoices, expenses, employee costs and managing the budget funds allocated to different sections involved in a project. Such individuals can be required to provide assistance during the construction of a new business facility, a product launch or any other new fixed-term assignment of the company. These professionals also provide vital insight into the profitability of a project and also ensure that it is completed on time.
9. Staff Accountant
Staff accountants usually work under other senior accountants and help them in discharging their duties. They may be asked to do bookkeeping, manage invoices, prepare financial statements or maintain accounts. Their job profile depends on the expert they are assisting and they do not possess expertise in any particular area of accountancy.
Accounting helps a business assess its financial condition in precise terms and the above-mentioned different types of accountants provide the necessary assistance to companies in managing their finances and ensuring that they adhere to all legal regulations.