Good Essay On Professionalism
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Accounting, Profession, Professionalism, Finance, Accountant, Business, Information, Taxes
Professionalism comprises of a number of attributes. All the attributes like specialized knowledge, competency, accountability, integrity, emotional control and the rest together define a professional. It is defined as “the level of excellence or competence that is expected of a professional”. Hoyle explained professionalism as “those strategies and rhetoric employed by members of an occupation in seeking to improve status, salary and conditions “Professionals are respected and valued in the work place as well as in the society as they earn a reputation for the characteristics they demonstrate. For a detailed and better understanding the accounting profession is chosen for our discussion.
NATURE OF THE ACCOUNTING PROFESSION
This requires specialized knowledge in the maintenance of accounts and all the financial records in an organization. The implementation of accounting and financial controls as well as preparing financial statements is done by the accountant. All the monetary transactions are maintained according to the accounting procedures carried out by the accounting professionals. Financial accounting provides information to all the people involved like shareholders and creditors. Balance sheet is prepared to show the financial position of the company. Managerial accounting helps to prepare capital and operating budgets .This provides the required information for reporting on financial problems and to evaluate the company’s performance. Accounting helps all the stake holders to understand the results of doing business.
A PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT
A person who has the qualifications specified according to the accounting profession is considered a professional. A Certified Public Accountant is a state regulated professional. To qualify as a professional Accountant, exams are conducted by professional accountancy bodies. Having professional qualification creates confidence and also shows that the job can be done well as the required training and skills are demonstrated. The American institute of Certified public accountants (AICPA) in USA and The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) are some of the recognized bodies imparting professional education for accounting. Due to the changing business scenario accounting in the present times have greater responsibility towards the society than in the early days which was to serve the owners alone. They have a strategic role in the organization as they provide professional advice through various accounting processes to maximize profits for the clients. They carry out complex accounting and fiscal operations and are responsible for making recommendations in various departments by analyzing financial data. Computation of tax owed as well as preparing tax returns is carried out by them. Auditing service is provided for individuals as well as business. They are also responsible for implementing new methods of accounting system suitable for the clients. Financial accounting data helps to find solution for price control and price determination. The systematic recording of financial transactions helps to understand the financial position of a company at any time and also helps to utilize the funds in the most appropriate manner. Government accountants prepare financial statements and conduct audits on private business to make sure that the income tax laws are followed.
CHARACTERISTICS OF A PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT
Professional accountants play a vital role in performing a number of tasks and assisting individuals in financial matters. Hence they are required to have the necessary skills and education. In addition to being attentive to details and error spotting, professional accountant has to comply with some basic principles .He should show honesty and sincerity in his profession. He should possess emotional stability. He should not be biased and should possess competent skills and provide professional standards of services. He should be able to accept innovations. As he also needs to have leadership skills he must have strong communication and problem solving skills. He should be able to accept changes and innovations. He is expected to maintain confidentiality of business information and should comply with the laws and regulations of the profession and avoid actions which discredit it.
ARE ALL ACCOUNTANTS PROFESSIONAL?
A person who does accounting jobs like bookkeeping and other financial jobs cannot be a professional accountant. Auditing and review of financial statements cannot be done by an accountant .A certified professional is in a higher position as compared to an accountant. To become a professional accountant one has to earn an accounting degree from a reputed college or university. The professional education teaches how to learn from different situations. The examinations conducted by the CPA has to be passed .Added to that a year of practice under a licensed CPA and a pass in the Professional Ethics Exam from the American Institute of CPAs is the required criteria to become a professional accountant. A lot of educational commitment and hard work is needed to become a professional. In an organization varied responsible jobs are carried out by professional accountants. As in any commodity the measure of professionals is in terms of compensation received.
THE DRAWBACKS OF NOT BEING A PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT
The most important drawback of not being a professional is that there is lesser carrier opportunities as compared to a professional. To take up the challenges of accounting by becoming a professional, enhances the ability to get higher pay. It gives a high esteem and opens up other prospects like getting a loan, business opportunities and the chance to choose the best of jobs. An accountant cannot do all the work as that of a professional. An accountant cannot have an exposure to high ranking executives and clients. An accountant finds difficulty in finding jobs as companies would prefer to employ professionals who can do wider activities.
THE VALUE ADDED SERVICES OF A PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT.
The service of an accountant is limited whereas a professional accountant can provide a wide range of accounting, management tasks from basic to entire accounting practice in a business. The services of a professional cover analysis and interpretation of data and also provide cost effective ways to implement changes for the financial needs. Tax returns filing, preparation of payroll, processing financial statements are also done by professionals. As they have the expertise and wide knowledge specialized service is demonstrated. They also help to plan the future and assist in funds mobilization. In the present days with the development of technology there is a change in the way business is carried out globally. So it is important to get reliable data faster to make the right decisions to manage competition.
THE ROLE OF ACCOUNTANTS
The work done by the accountants and professional accounting organizations play an important role to the society as well as to business. The study of accounting is useful in all aspects of our life. The most important example is to file income tax and also to decide about future investments .Accounting carrier has its challenges and rewards. There are many areas of specialization like financial accounting, budgeting, cost control etc. Many accountants work for the government and other non-profit organization. The two types of accounting are managerial and financial accounting. The stock holders and creditors get the required information from the financial statements. This helps to make decisions regarding investments in a company. Managerial accounting information is important for the managers for planning and estimation. The decisions regarding production, resource allocation and finance is made from the information generated from managerial accounting. It is important that the interests of the client should be managed well and also assists them in making business decisions. An accountant should be competent and wise to understand the changing situations and find solutions without delay. An ethical behavior is important for an accountant as he is responsible for his clients trust and integrity. Lack of sincerity leads to fraud for example the Enron scandal revealed in October 2001 which led to bankruptcy of the Enron Corporation, an American energy company based in Houston. Wrong accountings mislead the directors until an investigation was carried out. The company lost its customers and had to stop its operation. Same was the case with Alibaba group which was reported having accounting issues.
Accounting and auditing plays a very important role in the economy of a country. As the financial data analysis depends on the accountants estimate and judgments, there is a lot of bias and uncertainty involved. Many case the net income and equity is overstated. In many cases wrong analysis leads to wrong decisions. The present day business is competitive and so it focuses on profitability without concern to the interest of the public. Setting standards can make accountants behave in an ethical manner. The education for accountants should include the importance of showing concern for public interest. They should be able to work in unfamiliar situations. It is required that accounting professionals in the present days need to have critical thinking capability and should be able to solve diverse problems. It is necessary that an accountant helps individuals, as well as organizations in giving the right guidance for their financial activities.