Future of the CPA Profession

Everything you need to know!

Future of the CPA Profession
Ask Joey

Ask Joey

Hey! My name is Ask Joey, and I am the virtual tutor for the Universal CPA platform. I work 24/7 to help you pass the CPA exam. I hope you found this page information and helpful for passing the CPA exam!

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Future of the CPA Profession

The future of the CPA profession is dependent on the economy, globalization, and an increase in regulations. Based on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for auditors and accountants from 2021 to 2031 is expected to see a 6% increase.

This makes the accounting field, and careers with CPA licensure, a secure profession to pursue in the future. If this is the path you’re looking to follow, here is some information on the CPA exam, what you can expect in terms of compensation, and the benefits of becoming a CPA.

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How Hard is the CPA Exam?

The CPA exam is considered one of the most challenging exams when it comes to obtaining a professional credential. In fact, the national pass rate is only 50%.

The exam consists of four in-depth sections that test concepts and working knowledge. There are several factors that contribute to the difficulty of the exam: the amount of information covered, the time needed to study, and the format of the questions.

Due to the amount of information covered, it takes an incredible amount of time to prepare and study for the exam and 16 hours to complete all four parts of the exam itself. All four parts are required to be taken within an 18-month timespan.

The format of the questions make the exam difficult as well. While multiple choice is typically an easy format, the multiple choice questions found in one of the four sections of the CPA exam are quite tricky. This is because there is more than one correct answer to each question, so you have to take the time to narrow it down to the best answer.

The four sections of the CPA exam include the Financial and Auditing Reporting (FAR), Auditing and Attestation (AUD), Regulation (REG), and the Business Environment and Concept (BEC) sections. The FAR section covers statement preparation, FASB framework, and US GAAP rules. AUD covers audit processes, attestations, reviews, compilations, and the professional code of conduct (AICPA). REG focuses on ethics, business law, and business & personal taxation. BEC covers technology, information systems, management, cost accounting, and micro & macro economics. To learn more about each section, visit our section specific study guides below.

In 2021 the pass rate for FAR was 45%, AUD was 50%, REG was 59%, and BEC was 63%. Based on the historical pass rates, FAR is the most difficult section of the CPA exam.

Staff Accountants vs CPAs

Staff accountants usually have a degree in accounting or finance. Any staff accountant looking to become a CPA must meet all of their state’s requirements, experience requirements, and pass the CPA exam.

CPAs are more specialized than staff accountants. CPAs can represent clients before the IRS and their specialized skill is in tax codes. They typically work in fields such as information technology, auditing, tax preparation, forensic accounting, and for the government. For CPAs to maintain their accreditation, they must fulfill ongoing educational requirements.

How Much Do CPAs Make?

CPA’s salaries are based on several different factors. Salaries are typically based on certification, education, years of experience, industry or employer, credentials, job description, complexity of work, and location. Based on the 2021 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average salary for accountants was $77,250. CPAs make more money than accountants without the designated title. CPAs earn 10% more than an unlicensed accountant.

What Are The Benefits of a CPA?

There are many great benefits of becoming a CPA. A CPA license can really boost your career and provide plenty of exciting opportunities for upward mobility. Not to mention, it is a very prestigious title.

This prestigious title puts you right up there with an elite group of professionals at the top of your industry.  CPAs have achieved knowledge and expertise beyond accountants, who are non-certified. Because of this, CPAs are respected and admired due to their level of financial expertise that results from their advanced education, experience, training, and hard work.

CPAs are in demand now and will be in the future. While the business world becomes more automated, careers with CPAs still require a lot of critical thinking and applications, which can’t be replaced with technology. CPAs are very likely to find job security and stability throughout their career because they are needed everywhere and are indispensable. Companies rely on CPAs to keep their companies legally compliant and financially healthy.

Not only will you enjoy job security, but the credentials of a CPA will boost your upward mobility and provide you with a diverse selection of job opportunities. You can work in anything from higher levels of a company to starting and operating your own CPA firm. A CPA license can lead to careers in nonprofits, government agencies, any industry, public accounting, or on an international level. Your options are nearly limitless.

CPAs can also benefit from higher salaries and better benefits. A six figure income is well within reach for a CPA, even with a salary calculated via experience, industry, or location. A CPA license can also lead to more benefits such as a more flexible work schedule and vacation, since there are peak seasons and slower times throughout the year.

More flexibility leads to more job satisfaction. CPAs are multi-talented professionals who not only have a diverse selection of job opportunities, but also have a wide variety of job functions. With the diversity of work, along with the diverse job opportunities, CPAs can almost always find a niche that interests them…

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Getting the Most For Your Clients

If you are an accountant, CPA, or soon-to-be CPA, and are looking for ways to help your clients or future clients save money on their taxes, tools such as Corvee tax planning software will help you quickly find the strategies that will best meet their needs. Ensure you and your clients are getting the most out of their tax planning.

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