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1 October 2019 / Accounting Tips

10 Reasons to Consider a Part-Time Accounting Job

1 October 2019 > Accounting Tips

Are you looking for a new career option? Or have you been in the financial industry for some time, but are looking for some new way to boost your earnings?

You might want to consider taking on a part-time accounting job. As a part-time accountant, you can work with a wide range of different clients, making money by preparing tax returns, assembling financial reports, and more—and you’ll have more independence and autonomy so you can take control over the direction of your career.

So why would you consider a part-time accounting job above your other options, and how can you get started?

What Is a Part-Time Accounting Job?

A part-time accounting job can take many forms, but in general, you’ll be responsible for some or all of the typical responsibilities of a full-time accountant. This includes preparing asset, liability, and capital account entries, documenting and reporting on financial transactions, analyzing a company’s high-level finances, controlling accounts, giving financial advice to leadership, and preparing month-end reports and tax returns.

The difference with a part-time accounting job is that you won’t be working full-time for a single client. In some cases, that means contracting with a single employer, working under 40 hours a week. In other cases, it means becoming an independent contractor and working with many different clients, taking on projects as you see fit. There are no firm boundaries for what’s considered a “part-time” accountant other than your defined role within an organization, so there’s significant flexibility for ambitious professionals here.

Reasons to Take on a Part-Time Accounting Job

If you’re thinking about taking on a part-time accounting job, you should be motivated by a collection of these key reasons for getting involved in this career path:

  1. Minimal training.

    You probably won’t need much training to get started as a part-time accountant, especially if you’ve worked for an accounting department in the past. If you’ve previously held a position as an accountant or if you have an accounting degree, you can likely begin this job immediately. If you have no training or prior experience or education, you’ll have to jump through a few more hoops. That will likely mean getting at least a 2-year degree in accounting, and possibly getting certified as a public accountant in your state. You may also be able to find some opportunities that don’t require this formal training or education, provided you’re willing to learn on the job, though these opportunities are rarer.

  2. A stable industry.

    The accounting industry is extremely stable, with

    now and in the foreseeable future. Some industries are becoming heavily automated thanks to advances in technology, but for now, accounting is an industry that relies on at least some human oversight. Additionally, accounting is a hard need of every business; it’s not an industry that could dry up in the wake of an economic recession, nor is it likely to get replaced with a different industry or approach.

  3. Client flexibility.

    When you’re a part-time accountant, you’ll have some degree of control over who you take on as a client, or which employers you work for. As a full-time accountant, by contrast, you might feel “trapped,” or unable to push back against your employer without some kind of financial or career consequence. But when you’re part-time, you can reject work opportunities that you don’t like, or change employers if conditions are no longer suiting your needs and interests.

  4. Hours flexibility.

    For the most part, working as a part-time accountant also gives you flexibility with your hours—both in terms of the number of hours you work and when those hours fall. For example, if you prefer to work early in the morning rather than the afternoon, or vice versa, you can optimize your schedule to suit this. If you’re dealing with life responsibilities, you can reduce your hours, or increase them if you need extra money.

  5. Location flexibility.

    In many cases, you’ll be able to work remotely as a part-time accountant. Provided you have a digital device with an internet connection, you should be able to accept new assignments, communicate with clients, and make entries or reports in your accounting software—no matter where you are. If you're considering working from home, this is a massive advantage.

  6. Above average pay.

    If you’re working as a part-time accountant, you probably won’t have access to full-time benefits like health care or retirement funds, but you will enjoy the benefits of above-average pay. Whether you’re paid hourly or per project, you’ll make more than most of your counterparts—especially if you’re industrious in taking on many different projects.

  7. No upper income limit.

    When you work part-time as an accountant, you won’t have an upper income limit. Rather than having a set salary and restrictions on the freelance work you can take on, as a part-timer, you’ll be able to do as much or as little work as you like. Accordingly, if you keep improving your skills, taking on new clients, and working on more projects, you can make as much money as you want.

  8. High profitability.

    Accounting isn’t a field that demands a significant initial investment, or significant overhead costs. As long as you have a computer with the right software and a decent working environment, you can do your work effectively. Accordingly, working as a part-time accountant is much more profitable than other forms of entrepreneurship, turning nearly all your revenue into straight profit.

  9. Predictable workloads.

    Though there will naturally be some ebb and flow in demand for your skills, you can generally establish a predictable, consistent workload for yourself. This is especially true during tax season, when there’s usually such a large increase in demand that part-time accountants can choose to take on a fixed number of returns per week (or make some similar arrangement). If you crave stability and predictability, this is a major benefit.

  10. Future career options.

    After working as a part-time accountant, you’ll have more career options than ever before. You can list this work on your resume, setting you up to get a full-time accounting position (if that’s something that interests you). And if you have enough experience, you may be able to seek a higher position, or join a new business as a CFO. Of course, if you’re enjoying what you do, you could always remain a part-time accountant and advance your career by finding new clients and opportunities. The real benefit here is the number of options in front of you.

How to Get Started

If you aren’t yet a certified public accountant (CPA), this should probably be your primary responsibility. You may be able to pick up some part-time accounting work with some education or experience in the field, but for broader access to clients and for a greater success rate when accepting new jobs, it’s best to get formally certified.

Once you’re an official CPA, you can decide how you want to take on part-time work. For some people, that means writing up a business plan and starting your own micro-firm; this way, you’ll be able to take on clients as you see fit, define the standards of your organization, and maintain full autonomy. For others, it means signing up to work for or with a separate organization; you’ll forfeit a bit of independence, but you’ll also have much more stability, and a steady stream of work to take on at your discretion.

If you’re ready to start looking for part-time jobs or short-term gigs as an accountant, look no further than Taxfyle! Join our network of tax experts today, and you’ll get access to thousands of potential clients—and all the work you choose to take on.

Jessie Suarez

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