The world of accounting encompasses a wide variety of job titles, each with their own job description and set of rules for success. Keep in mind that most training for accountants will require a college degree and/or certification programs that one must complete.
In addition to the general education and ethics training that all accountants must undergo, those who specialize will have further requirements to complete. Specialists in the accounting field can specialize in a certain area (such as corporate or real estate), and they can also specialize in type (such as management accountant or certified public accountant).
Financial statement / accountant's report
A financial statement is a presentation of financial data including balance sheets, income statements and statements of cash flow, or any statement meant to communicate the financial position of a business or person. Financial statements are also sometimes called accountant's reports.
Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB)
Created in 2002, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, also known as PCAOB, is a non-profit organization who main mission is to protect investors' interests. They investigate (and discipline, if necessary) public accounting firms and their employees.
Uniform CPA Examination
Once the requirements are satisfied, an accountant can sit for the Uniform CPA Examination, and upon passing the test, will then earn the CPA title. The education and experience requirements can vary between states, but most require a Bachelor's degree plus two years experience working in the field.
Certified Management Accountant Program
The IMA (Institute of Management Accountants)conducts the Certified Management Accountant program for global recognition, faster career advancement and higher pay. A certified management accountant has to have a Bachelor's degree, two years of experience and a passing grade on the exam. CMAs work more with preparing budgets, business models and investment strategies.
Certified financial planners, or CFPs, are certified by the CFP Board after completing a series of requirements that include education, experience, ethics and an exam. A certified financial planner's main work consists of developing an overall financial plan for his or her clients. Clients may be individuals, public or private companies or non-profit organizations.
To become a certified internal auditor (CIA), you must past the CIA exam administered by The Institute of Internal Auditors. Auditors monitor companies, usually on a consultation basis, to make sure that the company is running efficiently, that its financial reports are honest and correct, that they are behaving ethically, and they are complying with laws.