5 Career Paths to Pursue with a CPA License

Getting your CPA degree is a lot of work. If you’ve managed to pass the exams after months or years of studying, you deserve a serious pat on the back. After a bit of self-congratulation, now it’s time to consider what you’ll do with your new certification.

There are many career paths open to CPAs. After all, increased flexibility is presumably one of the reasons you sought the certification in the first place. If you’re hoping to make the most of your career, you should take stock of your options before making any binding decisions. Here are five potential career paths for you to consider.

Become A CFO

Most large companies have a Chief Financial Officer (CFO) who is in charge of the financial side of the organization. This is a major corporate position, so it comes with a lot of responsibility. You’ll be in charge of managing the corporation’s financial risks. Investments and financial maneuvers will all happen at your behest. This could put you in a fraught position, but it will also make you a major player. It might be tough to land such a high position immediately after receiving your certification, but you could certainly set becoming an CFO as your ultimate goal.

Aim To Be A Controller

Becoming a controller is another way to enter the upper echelons of financial management. Controllers are typically the people in charge of a company’s accounting department. If you’re eager to become the head honcho for an entire department, then this could be the perfect career path for you. Again, you might have to build up your resume in order to land such a coveted position. Once you do get the job, you find yourself in an influential and well-paid place.

Be A Finance Manager

A finance manager organized a company’s finances in order to maintain the financial health of the organization. They use analytics and other research methods to develop a comprehensive understanding of a company’s finances. Then, they use their best judgment to steer the company towards long-term financial stability. While they’re not quite upper-level management themselves, they report directly to the big bosses. If you’re interested in a hands-on leadership position, then becoming a finance manager is a worthy aspiration.

Stick To Auditing

When you become a CPA, it’s typically expected that you’ll continue your work as an accountant. Even if you aspire to a management position, you’ll likely start your career working with a large firm or with the accounting department of a private company. Most public accounts work in one of two fields: audit or tax. When you work in auditing, you help companies make sure that their finances are in order. You check their books for problems or irregularities. If you enjoy this work, then you could remain an auditor for the rest of your career. There are plenty of ways to advance as an auditor, from rising up the ranks of an established firm or becoming a partner in your own private venture.

Stick To Tax Preparation

While some CPAs enter the accounting world as auditors, others focus on tax preparation. Pretty much all entities, from massive corporations to regular individuals, have to file their taxes every year. The tax code is insanely convulatuted, and almost everybody needs some help getting their finances in order. As a tax preparer, you’ll use your knowledge and experience to help others pay their taxes. A career in this branch of accounting promises remarkable job security. After all, the state isn’t likely to do away with taxes any time soon.