The Accounting Programme & The Vital Role of Accountants in Business

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role of accountants

Accounting tracks nearly everything that’s going on in your business allowing you to understand how your company is doing and where it’s going in terms of its financial stability. Accounting is the language of a business, and it’s written with numbers. It enables a company to evaluate their current financial health, learn from historical results, project future outcomes, and at the end of the day make far better-informed decisions. This makes studying a programme in accounting an exciting and thrilling adventure that can be embarked on by registering for an accounting programme BCOM degree in Accounting with MANCOSA.

What does an accountant do?

Accountants (individuals who have to study an accounting programme) are responsible for compiling, analysing, verifying and preparing financial records for their department or organization as a whole and they also work with a company’s financial documents to ensure that they are lawful, efficient and compliant business practices. In detail and in accordance with the South African Institute of Professional Accountants SAIPA an accountant will be responsible for:

  • Preparing the monthly profit and loss, and balance sheet reports
  • Tax reporting and inventory processing
  • Collecting and analysing data, which is then used in the preparation of weekly and monthly estimates
  • Advising on estimates for project funds
  • Creating KPI reports
  • Preparing weekly cash flow statements, and controlling expenditure and cash flow
  • Assisting with the preparation of year-end accounts and statutory accounts
  • Responding to financial inquiries by gathering and interpreting data
  • Conducting internal audits such as wage reviews
  • Examining financial records to check for accuracy
  • Managing and training staff when necessary

The role of accounting in business – why is it important?

Accounting is often called “the language of business.” Why? Because it communicates so much of the information that owners, managers, and investors need to evaluate a company’s financial performance. Professionals who have completed an accounting programme. Accountants are important stakeholders in the business because they report and reflect on business activities. The purpose of accounting is to help stakeholders make better business decisions by providing them with financial information. No individual would try to run an organization or make investment decisions without accurate and timely financial information, and it’s the accountant who prepares this information. More importantly, accountants make sure that stakeholders understand the meaning of financial information, and they work with both individuals and organizations to help them use financial information to deal with business problems. Actually, collecting all the numbers is the easy part—today, all you have to do is start up your accounting software. The hard part is analysing, interpreting, and communicating the information. Of course, you also have to present everything clearly while effectively interacting with people from every business discipline. All this means that “accounting” can be defined as a system for measuring and summarizing business activities, interpreting financial information, and communicating the results to management and other decision-makers.

What accounting program should you study?

There are two typical accounting fields that one can choose from; that is management accounting and financial accounting, which is obtained by studying a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting or Management Accounting. Management accountants provide information and analysis to decision-makers inside the organization in order to help them run it. CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) defines Management accounting as “Management Accounting is the process of identification, measurement, accumulation, analysis, preparation, interpretation, and communication of information that used by management to plan, evaluate, and control within an entity and to assure appropriate use of an accountability for its resources”. This is the phase of accounting concerned with providing information to managers for use in planning and controlling operations and in decision making. Managerial accounting is concerned with providing information to managers i.e. people inside an organization who direct and control its operations.

Financial accountants (furnish information to individuals and groups both inside and outside the organization in order to help them assess its financial performance. Management accounting helps you keep your business running while financial accounting tells you how well you’re running it. It is useful to describe the differences between these two aspects of accounting since each one describes a distinctly different career path. In general, financial accounting refers to the aggregation of accounting information into financial statements, while managerial accounting refers to the internal processes used to account for business transactions. Financial accounting on the other hand is concerned with providing information to stockholders, creditors, and others who are outside an organization. Managerial accounting provides the essential data with which organizations are actually run. Financial accounting provides the scorecard by which a company’s past performance is judged.

Study an accounting programme with MANCOSA

MANCOSA offers the student two courses that they will be able to choose from. A BCOM degree in financial management, which is a specialised undergraduate degree programme that prepares students for the management of monetary resources in an organisation and a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting which equips the student with the skills required to enter into a range of professional careers in the exciting field of accounting. The accounting programme aims at developing a students intellectual ability and provides skills for the recording and processing of financial information within an accounting framework.

Author – Leticia Sewsunker