Business valuators are accountants who appraise businesses and analyze the assets, liabilities, financial capital, and tax burden of companies in order to prepare profit and loss statements. The job might also involve assessing human capital and presenting financial information in order to establish the value of the company so that decisions can be made as to whether to buy or sell the company. To become a business valuator, you generally will need a college degree, internship experience, post-graduate work experience, and a graduate degree.
It typically is important to earn a bachelor's degree in accounting while also completing the requirements to become a certified public accountant (CPA). Getting good grades also can be essential because a high grade point average (GPA) typically will be valued by many prospective employers and graduate programs. If you want to become a business valuator, it can be essential for you to participate in a college internship, as well. The career services department should be able to help you apply for an internship. Completing an internship can be important because the internship can provide you with valuable supervised experience to supplement your classroom learning.
Generally, it is recommended that you apply for an accounting job during the last semester of college. The career services department at your college typically can provide job-search assistance. Talking with your college internship supervisor and conducting online job searches may also be helpful.
You should typically seek graduate school opportunities as soon as you have completed your first year of post-graduate work experience. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) in accounting is generally recommended for anyone who wants to become a business valuator. Participation in professor-supervised research projects can be important in graduate school because it can improve your career prospects and it will give you preparation for a doctoral degree if you later decide to pursue a college teaching career.
If you want to become a business valuator, another credential that can be useful is the certification in business valuation that is given by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Having the certification in business valuation can make you more competitive in the market. It demonstrates to prospective clients that you have specific expertise in business valuation beyond the master's degree in accounting.
Although valuation work requires a lot of numerical analysis, the work also typically requires a lot of travel and verbal interaction with clients. Thus, a valuation career requires both strong business skills and strong interpersonal skills. Also, there are many work options within the field of business valuation. For example, you could do valuation of companies, or you could do stock option valuation, hedge fund valuation, valuation of estates in divorce cases, investment banking, or bank management.