Top 10 Fastest Growing Jobs in the Finance & Accounting Industry
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The finance and accounting industry is poised for growth over the next ten years. Projections from the U.S. Department of Labor estimate that the field will grow by as much as 11 percent between 2020 and 2030. This means that job seekers in the finance and accounting category will have more opportunities than ever before to find a long-term career as part of a public accounting firm or in the finance department supporting an individual company.
Since the pandemic began in 2020, more CPA firms and private companies are adopting remote and hybrid workforce models for their accounting and finance staff.
New government programs like the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP1 & PPP2) and the Corona Virus Aid, Relief and Economic Securities Act (CARES Act) have been a major support to the US economy and especially to small business. Programs like these don’t come without complexities and the need for more experienced accounting, tax, and audit professionals working both inside CPA firms as well as corporate accounting and finance departments. We believe employers being open to remote CPA and accounting positions have dramatically increased the job opportunities for accounting and finance professionals who are not prepared to relocate. Business continues to become more complex as does the demand for CPA, accounting, and finance professionals.
All this is great news for everyone associated with the finance profession from recent accounting graduates to seasoned professionals interested career advancement opportunities across America.
What’s more, jobs in this field aren’t just limited to CPAs and accountants. There’s a wide variety of options in the industry that appeal to people with a range of skill sets, expertise, certifications, and accreditations and experience.
To give you a sense of the types of roles out there, the experts at VALiNTRY Financial have created this list of the top 10 jobs summarized from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to consider. Many of these are the careers that have opportunity according to the most recent publication of the Occupational Outlook Handbook from the U.S. Department of Labor. We’ll give you a brief description of the role, information about the median salary, and tips to help you transition into these long-term career opportunities should one appeal to you.
10 Best Jobs for Growth in Finance and Accounting (CPAs)
- Market Research Analysts
Growth Rate: 22% much faster than average
Median Salary: $65,810 per year
What You’ll Do: If you like the idea of contributing to the growth of a company through innovation and by bringing new products to market, then you may thrive as a market research analyst. In the role, you’ll study the market conditions and appetite and make recommendations on the potential success of a product or service.
You’ll help your organization determine what products are in demand, identify your target market, and understand what the best price point is for profitability.
Market research analysts generally work for larger companies as part of a department, and these roles are available in a variety of industries.
The best candidates have both a bachelor’s and master’s degree and are excellent as using a combination of analytical and mathematical skills to develop recommendations.
- Personal Financial Advisors
Growth Rate: 5%
Median Salary: $89,330 per year
What You’ll Do: One of the most lucrative financial careers is that of a personal financial advisor. If you pursue this option, you’ll work one on one with clients to give them advice and recommendations on how to manage their portfolio including their investments, estate, mortgages, insurance needs, taxes, and retirement accounts to maximize their opportunity.
You’ll be responsible for offering them products and services to help them achieve their financial goals and will often serve as an intermediary between your client and financial companies to connect them with products that match their goals.
Most financial advisors work for firms or brokerage groups and can be recruited by staffing agencies like VALiNTRY Financial. This is typically a full-time position, and you’ll need to be available when your clients need you, which can mean working evenings or weekends.
Financial advisors typically have a bachelor’s degree and need additional certifications, accreditations, and licenses to work with clients. You’ll also need to complete ongoing continuing education throughout your career to keep your credentials up to date.
- Management Analysts
Growth Rate: 14% faster than average
Median Salary: $87,660 per year
What You’ll Do: As a management analyst, you’ll do consulting work for your organization or multiple organizations to help them improve their efficiency. You will work closely with leadership staff to make recommendations on how to reduce costs, bring in more top-line revenue, and show overall increased profit margins.
This is a position that’s a good fit if you like to travel as you’ll often be out of the office meeting with clients at their company headquarters.
A four-year degree is required, and candidates who also obtain their Certified Management Consultant credentials may have better and more lucrative job prospects.
- Financial Analysts
Growth Rate: 6%
Median Salary: $83,660 per year
What You’ll Do: Financial analysts have many of the same job responsibilities as financial advisors, but rather than working with individual clients and being paid commissions, analysts typically work for businesses and are paid a regular salary versus a more commission-based structure with Financial Advisors.
In this role, you’ll assess the financial performance of investments like stocks and bonds and make recommendations to help improve the profitability and stability of a company or book of business.
These full-time positions require a minimum of a four-year degree, and you’ll work in an office.
Depending on the particulars of the role, you may need to work with clients and have excellent communication skills. Financial analysts are also sometimes an internal role, and you may report out to someone in a client-facing position who will handle the customer service aspects of the job.
- Loan Officers
Growth Rate: Limited as of 2022
Median Salary: $63,960 per year
What You’ll Do: As a loan officer, you’ll be responsible for determining whether or not an individual or business is eligible to receive a loan from your organization. You’ll need to evaluate their resources and provide recommendations and authorization to approve the transaction.
These positions are generally available at banks, mortgage companies, credit unions, and other commercial lenders. They are full time, and you’ll need a bachelor’s degree to get started. Depending on where you specialize, such as in the mortgage industry, you may need additional licenses or credentials and will need to do continuing education throughout your career to stay current on regulations and compliance issues.
- Cost Estimators
Growth Rate: Limited as of 2022
Median Salary: $66,610 per year
What You’ll Do: As a cost estimator, you’ll compile data that shows the big picture of how much time, money, materials, and labor are needed to complete a job. This could be a product, service, or construction job depending on the industry in which you work.
For the most part, cost estimators work in an office, but you may be required to visit a construction site or an assembly line at a factory to collect data depending on your industry.
Overall, a bachelor’s degree is required to get started in this field. However, if you have significant experience in construction and have played an active role in managing a site, there may be an opportunity for internal growth and a transition into a cost estimator role within your organization.
- Financial Examiners
Growth Rate: 18% faster than average
Median Salary: $81,460
What You’ll Do: If you are meticulous and enjoy following laws and compliance, then a career as a financial examiner might be the right fit for you. In this role, you’ll review balance sheets, assess the management of financial institutions like banks, and ensure that they comply with the laws and regulations around the risk level of loans.
These positions are available in several different types of institutions. You could work out of a finance or insurance office, directly with the federal government, or for your local state government.
These full-time positions require a bachelor’s degree with an emphasis on accounting. Typically, you will mentor and train with a senior examiner as an entry-level employee to give you on the job knowledge before you work on your own and move up through the company ranks.
- Accountants and Auditors
Growth Rate: 7% annually through 2030
Median Salary: $73,560 per year
What You’ll Do: Accountants and auditors are among the most in-demand positions in the finance and accounting industry, and they work to maintain accurate financial records and file taxes on time for both individuals and businesses.
These positions are generally full-time and may have some overtime requirements seasonally, like during tax season.
To become an accountant, you’ll need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in accounting or another related field. Depending on your career path, you may also need to obtain your credentials as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) to continue to grow in the industry.
- Budget Analysts
Growth Rate: 5% slower than average
Median Salary: $78,970 per year
What You’ll Do: If you search for a job as a budget analyst, then you could end up working in the public or private sector helping businesses to better organize and understand their financial situation. Your reports will allow company and institutional leaders to assess and streamline their spending.
These roles are available in private companies, at public universities, or with government agencies as the local, state, and federal level.
You’ll work full time and need a bachelor’s degree, and a focus in accounting, statistics, or economics is preferred.
Growth Rate: 30% (much faster than average)
Median Salary: $76,270 per year
What You’ll Do: Logisticians connect the dots in an organization between a supplier and consumer. You’ll work to optimize the supply chain and manage the life cycle of a product, ensuring that you maximize efficiencies and cut costs whenever possible.
There are logistician roles available in many different industries, and this fast-paced work can sometimes be stressful because of the number of tasks you’ll need to juggle.
If you perform well in intense situations and have a four-year degree, then this might be the right opportunity for you.
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