Accounting Jobs 101: The Skills You Need to Land the Top Jobs

5 Key Skills to Demonstrate to Employers

According to, accounting jobs command an average of $63,238 as of February 2020, but the range typically falls between $57,221 and $69,854. However, in more senior roles salaries are much higher. But what kind of skills do you need to land those higher-paying accounting jobs near you?
Accountants at the higher level will find themselves at the heart of the business, making key financial decisions and giving advice to owners and executives. This is a lot of responsibility. When hiring for high-level senior accountant jobs, hiring managers are often looking for the following hard and soft skills.


Accounting is an essential part of any business. There is no business operating in America that does not use accounting. As accountants, you hold the control over the numbers and no project can get the green light to go ahead without solidly applied accounting.
As the world is evolving, accountants need to show innovation and that they can change with it. Having fresh ideas and being adaptable to change can help show you are prepared for the future and will be a long-term asset to a business.
Accountants can no longer rely on the old tools of the trade and the traditional business model of return on investment, payback period, and other familiar methods.


As accountants progress into more senior roles, they step away from functions such as payroll and taxes. Senior executives are depended on to give financial advice to help the business move up the chain. Most businesses are not where they want to be, and having powerful analytical skills can help you analyze the transactions that the business is taking, and provide insights to changes that can be made to improve the business’s standing.

Risk Management

Businesses are being disrupted by technology all the time these days. Markets move faster than ever before, and the landscape they operate in is constantly changing. It has never been harder for businesses to secure their future for the long term. In the 1950s, most companies on the S&P 500 list would stay on it for the next 60 years. However, Harvard University’s Clayton Christensen says that the companies on this list today stay there for an average of around 18 years.  Senior accountants of the future will need to be standing side by side with executives in the board room, helping them navigate risk and make the business resilient to secure its long-term future.


Communication is a skill required in any industry, and accounting is no exception. You may think that, sitting behind a computer screen looking at numbers all day, this is one of the less essential skills needed to progress. You couldn’t be more wrong.  An essential skill for any accountant wanting to progress in their career is to be able to communicate well and present complex accounting information in a straightforward, clear and jargon-free way that ensures every board member understands.

As an accountant, you will need to work alongside your colleagues on every task and having excellent communication skills will make it easier for you to do your job well. You will be able to collaborate, easily find the information you need, and innovate together.


Trust and credibility are essential assets for any accountant. You are handling businesses’ money. The main goal of a successful business is to make capital. When you are building your career as an accountant you need to show that you can be trusted. Trusted to handle a business’s finances, help it increase its income, and give good advice to ensure its success.

Credibility gives you leverage in job interviews. Showing that you have been trusted with large accounts gives you the social proof for another business to trust you with the same level of responsibility. As a specialist accounting staffing agency, 6 Degrees work with some of the best accountant employers in Atlanta. Whether this is your first accounting job or you are a seasoned professional looking to move into a new role, contact 6 Degrees today.

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