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Employment demand for accountants and auditors is expected to increase 4% by 2029 according the the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
With that kind of expected growth it gives you leeway to be more selective about the right role for you.
In order to make sure your resume helps land you the job you want, check out our professional writing tips.
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3 Tips for Writing Accounting Resumes
1. Choose the right format for your resume
As you know from accounting, how you organize your data for people to interpret is very important.
When it comes to resumes, the organizational structure is called its format.
There are three main resume-format types: chronological, functional and hybrid.
The main difference between the three formats is where the primary focus is put on your resume, and whether your work experience or your skills take center stage.
Chronological formats work best for accounting professionals with years of experience because they put the emphasis on roles you’ve held, duties you’ve performed, and show a career progression. If you have five years’ or more experience, this should be your go-to format.
However, if you’re fresh out of school or transferring from a different industry, you should choose another format that better suits your level of accounting experience.
Functional formats prioritize selling your skills and education which takes attention away from your inexperience. If you have less than two years’ experience as an accounting professional, this format is perfect.
A hybrid format is a combination of the functional and chronological formats and gives a nice balance to your work history and skills. If you’ve worked for more than two years in accounting, but less than five total, use this format.
2. Promote your skills
While every role in accounting may have its own required skills needed, in general, there are some skills that have universal appeal.
Try to include six-to-eight important skills that you bring to the table to feature in your resume.
Desired skills include:
Pay close attention to the job posting or ad — the phrases and the keywords listed are your best indication of exactly what the employer wants in a candidate. Reflect back some of those key skills with the same phrasing the employer uses as they apply to you and your experience.
3. Use a template to make sure your resume looks outstanding
In accounting, it’s important that you organize the data you’re going to present in the cleanest and most-organized way possible.
With a resume, it’s the same goal but with the added challenge of making your resume aesthetic and visually pleasing.
That’s why you should make your life a lot easier by using a resume template.
A template is a tool created by a professional designer that will give your resume the visual pizazz and layout it needs to get noticed by employers.
All you have to do is select one that you like and input your personal data.
JobHero has some great resume templates that you can use.
Even better, JobHero features a Resume Builder that allows you to choose from a selection of templates, and takes the automation a step further.
The builder auto-suggests phrases to describe your work history custom-tailored to the job that you’re applying for.
JobHero’s Resume Builder is like having a resume expert look over your shoulder to give you step-by-step guidance.
Don’t get overlooked for a job because your resume didn’t have a professional edge.
How much does a job in accounting get paid?
Roles in accounting tend to be well-compensated — after all, companies are entrusting their survival and financial success to their accountants. It makes sense why companies are willing to shell out top dollar to keep good accountants.
The average median pay for accountants and auditors in 2019 was $71,550 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
For your resume, because jobs in the accounting and bookkeeping field tend to pay so well, it means that your resume needs to look extra sharp and professional.
In the same way that you wouldn’t show up to an interview dressed in a wrinkled outfit, you should submit a resume that shows you put effort into making sure you look good.
Again, that’s a great reason to use a Resume Builder. The builder has top-notch professional designs that will set your resume apart from the competition.
What should I put on my resume for accounting?
As with all resumes, you will need the five core sections: contact information, professional summary or objective statement, skills, work history and education.
The main selling points of your accounting resume should be found in your skills and work experience sections. Those are the main spaces where you have to convince employers that you’re the right person for the job.
Since accounting is a numbers-focused career, including as many flattering numbers about your career as possible is the best tactic to impress employers.
For example, an audit director could include personal statistics like this:
As an accountant you know that numbers never lie — and neither should you on your resume. Employers will immediately disqualify candidates they suspect of embellishing or misrepresenting themselves.
How do I list education on an accounting resume?
Most, if not all, roles in accounting are going to require that you have some level of higher education.
It’s important that you include all education starting with college by listing the name of the institution that you studied at, it’s city/state, the degree you obtained (if any) and your major(s) if applicable. Only in the event that you didn’t graduate should you include the years you attended.
It should look something like this:
Coral Gables College Coral Gables, FL
Bachelor of Science, Accounting
Some roles will even require advanced certifications like an Association of Chartered Certified Accounts (ACCA) Qualification or Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license.
However, you should create a special section to list these on your resume called “Licenses and Certifications.”
What kind of work experience should I put on an accounting resume?
Try to keep all the work experience you include in a resume focused on accounting.
The more your work history aligns with this new role, the more hiring managers are apt to give you serious consideration.
Try to include details about your previous roles that you believe will be useful in this new role, for example, if the company had a similar size, culture, product or service.
If you’re fresh out of school or new to accounting you could include work from other industries, but only if there are necessary skills culled from those jobs that would apply to work in accounting such as cash-handling, data entry, data analysis, financial reports, bookkeeping, payroll, inventories or management.
Should I include a cover letter with my accounting resume?
Yes, it’s a standard expectation that you include a cover letter when you submit your resume for a job in accounting.
This is a good thing though as a cover letter gives you additional space to add details about your bookkeeping skills and work experience that you couldn’t fit in your resume.
Not to mention, a cover letter also gives you the opportunity to tell a story about your work experience that will help make a more memorable impression on hiring managers and give a better sense of what you’re like as a person.
JobHero has a huge library of professional accounting cover letter examples that you can use to find your bearings and help create your own great letter.
If you want step-by-step instructions on what to include in your cover letter, JobHero also features a guide on how to write a cover letter that gives expert advice on what to include in each section of your cover letter.