In order to help you gain full understanding on what accountants do I would like to share my own experience and different roles as the accountant in various organizations I had opportunity to work for through last decade. Hopefully that would be the best example of the accountant job, duties and responsibilities as well as the work environment. I am confident that by describing numerous tasks I was responsible for I can prove how diverse and complicated accounting job is and that it can be extremely interesting profession.
My true accounting career stared as Staff Accountant at one of the local casinos where I worked for over 6 years. The casino was a public company operating in a gaming industry with a medium size annual revenues. Due to the company’s organization I have to admit that it was one of the most interesting places to work for. The company has various departments such as casino, hotel, gas station, RV Park and general store what gave me amazing opportunity to observe interdepartmental relations affecting various aspects of the business.
In the casino I was called ‘inventory queen’ since I was responsible for the inventory control as well as the cost of goods sold variance explanation (relating to food & beverage, retail items and fuel). In addition to that, I was responsible for the reconciliation of monthly gaming income and filing gaming income tax with the Nevada Gaming Commission (which in my opinion is one of the most complex taxes). I also had an opportunity to prepare and calculate other taxes such as sales and use tax and hotel revenue tax or live entertainment tax (a levy applied to some forms of entertainment in both gaming and nongaming establishments, which generates in State of Nevada more than $150 million a year).
Once you are involved as the accountant in any tax preparation it becomes inevitable that you will assist outside auditors during the audits. In the casino I gained great exposure to the interaction with the auditors and their requests as well as following their recommendations.
Finally working as the staff accountant in the casino I was highly involved in the general ledger side of the accounting preparing numerous adjustments and recluses as well as I was assisting in the monthly financial statement closing. In addition to this, one of my tasks was monthly financial report budget variance explanation. And let’s not forget about monthly balance sheet accounts reconciliation!
As illustrated in the above description the responsibilities of the accountant just in one company can be very diverse, complicated and require ability to understand many complex aspects of the business. They also make accounting job very interesting giving the accountant opportunity of the unique insight into the business.
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