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How Do I Become a General Ledger Accountant?

Article Details
  • Written By: T. L. Childree
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 07 May 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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A general ledger accountant is responsible for daily bookkeeping activities and ensuring compliance with regional tax laws. Excellent mathematical skills and a high level of accuracy are usually needed for this career. A bachelor’s degree in accounting or business is the minimum educational requirement to become a general ledger accountant, but some employers may require a master’s degree. You may also need to complete an internship and pass a regional Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam before beginning work. After you become a general ledger accountant, you will probably be in charge of managing various financial records such as payroll deductions, balance sheets, and tax statements.

A high level of accuracy and attention to detail is typically required to succeed in this profession. Excellent mathematical and analytical skills are usually needed as well. You must also have good communications skills and be able to work independently or as part of a team. These professionals are responsible for meeting various tax deadlines and the ability to work well under pressure is essential. A good working knowledge of computers and software will also be beneficial for this career.

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It is important to begin preparing for this career by taking high school courses in mathematics and business. You should also determine any regional CPA educational requirements before enrolling in college. A bachelor’s degree in accounting or business is typically needed to become a general ledger accountant, but some employers may require a master’s degree. If postgraduate training is needed, you may be able to work in an entry-level, accounting position while completing your studies. You must also become proficient in the most commonly used accounting and tax-preparation software to help prepare for this occupation.

Most employers want you to have a certain amount of relevant work experience in addition to a college degree. You may be able to gain this work experience by completing an internship during college. Many colleges offer these internships as a way of providing hands-on training in addition to traditional classroom instruction. Many companies also require you to become professionally certified prior to employment. In the United States, regional certification information is available from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

After you become a general ledger accountant, you will primarily be responsible for managing various financial records. These records may include items such as employee payroll deductions, quarterly income reporting, and tax payments. You will also be required to maintain accurate balance sheets and banking records. In addition to these duties, you may be called upon to conduct periodic audits or manage employee health benefits.

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