The chief accountant is the lead accountant responsible for central operations in any given accounting department. This is a position of financial planning, directing and consulting. A chief accountant typically holds four-year degree in finance, accounting or business administration and preferably is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the chief accountant earned an average annual salary of $115,520 as of 2008.
The chief accountant plans the technical and clerical activities. He also hands out work assignments to members of the accounting department. He plans how the accounting system will operate and what procedures will be followed.
The chief accountant plays a part in directing scheduled maintenance of the central accounting system within the operation. As a director, the chief accountant sets up improvement evaluations and measures for accounting staff. He also directs the preparation of annual documents, financial statements and reports.
Consultation and advisement sessions are held with administrators by the chief accountant pertaining to laws and requirements of accounting systems. The chief accountant may also meet with governmental agencies to determine how transactions in the accounting system will be recorded or reported.
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