Benefits to Being a CPA

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Is being a CPA worth it?

A lot of top-tier employers will list having a CPA license as desirable, if not essential, for many accounting roles. The more technical or senior the position, the more likely you’ll need to be a CPA. But is being a CPA worth it for every accounting career path? Or does it depend on what you want to do?

In this article, we discuss the benefits of CPA license and answer the important question – why become a CPA?

CPA Careers

As a CPA there are a variety of specializations that one can choose from. The CPA exam is changing to tailor the materials tested so that they align with these specializations. Some of the most common specializations within the accounting profession consist of:

Audit Professional
Tax Professional
Management Consulting
Financial Analysis

Benefits of a CPA License

 While the CPA exam is hard, it challenges accountants to have the skills, knowledge, and experience to offer value to their clientele.

If you’re debating if being a CPA is worth it, the most obvious question you’ll have is, will it advance my career?

The answer is a resounding yes. There are six main benefits to obtaining a CPA license, and all of them are linked to career progression. So, let’s explore each.

If you’re debating if being a CPA is worth it, the most obvious question you’ll have is, will it advance my career?

The answer is a resounding yes. There are six main benefits to obtaining a CPA license, and all of them are linked to career progression. So, let’s explore each.

accounting professional

1. More Career Opportunity

CPAs have never been more in demand. Being highly regarded for their technical accounting and strategic financial skills, they are uniquely positioned to help organizations, big and small, navigate global economic challenges.

So, if you’re thinking why become a CPA, know that you’ll have more job opportunities than if you were non-licensed. Essentially, you’ll have your pick of jobs in any industry, public accounting, government, and the nonprofit sector.

2. Better Long-Term Prospects

If your longer-term career goal is to hold a senior-level role in accounting and finance, being a CPA has its advantages. Having an enhanced level of continuous knowledge will set you apart from non-CPAs.

So, the benefits of CPA licensure are easy to see if you want to become a partner or manager in a public accounting firm or a CFO at a large organization.

Likewise, if at any time you decide to start your own public accounting firm, having a CPA license can be a huge advantage.

3. You’ll Be Able to Perform at a Higher Level

If you’re still asking yourself, is being a CPA worth it?, one of the things to consider is what you’ll be able to do.

CPAs, unlike non-licensed accountants, are fiduciaries with a legal duty and power to act on behalf of their clients. This means that, as a CPA, you can:

Plus, one of the biggest benefits of CPA license is that you’ll have far more tax code and auditing knowledge than your non-licensed peers.

4. Strong Earning Potential

One of the main reasons why people become a CPA is the earning potential.

CPAs must complete at least 150 college credit hours (compared to a standard 120 hours of a bachelor’s degree), pass a 4-part CPA exam and gain specific experience. Furthermore, they must commit to 40 hours of continuing education each year. As such, CPAs are typically rewarded with a higher salary than non-licensed accountants.

According to research from Franklin University, the average salary for CPAs in their first three years is $69,500, as opposed to $60,000 for non-licensed accountants.

Although the pay gap tends to lessen with time, a CPA can expect to earn 10-15% more than a non-licensed accountant.

5. More Flexibility

Two of the lesser-spoken-about benefits of CPA license are flexibility and job security. While many accounting functions are becoming automated, the role of the CPA is not. There’s simply no replacement for the level of knowledge and critical thinking that a CPA can bring, and employers recognize this.

Even at times of economic uncertainty, CPAs are needed more than ever as they help organizations navigate financial ups and down. It’s not surprising, then, that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), by 2030, accounting and auditor jobs are expected to grow by 7%, making the role of the CPA even more pivotal.

6. A highly Regarded Role

There’s no doubt about it, CPAs are incredibly well respected. As the AICPA rightly puts it, “the CPA credential is a symbol of trust and professionalism.”

After 8.5 years of academic and technical training, passing the rigorous CPA exam, and continuously committing to a high standard of ethics & education, it’s not hard to see why it’s held in such high regard.

Final Thoughts

Now that you’ve explored the benefits of CPA license, it’s time to start preparing for the CPA exams. With higher earning potential and greater career prospects, gaining your CPA license is a positive career move.

If you’re wanting to get going, we suggest signing up for a Universal CPA Free Trial. The no-obligation 7-day trial will give you an insight into what you’ll be expected to study and know across all four CPA exam specialisms (AUD, BEC, FAR, and REG). You’ll find video lectures, electronic study guides, multiple choices questions (with video explanations), simulations, and more. It’s a great way to jump-start your learning.

Of course, if you have any questions, you can speak to us using the live chat function on our website. We’ll do our best to answer any questions you have – either about the CPA exams or the benefits of the CPA license.

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