Small Business Spotlight: In-Demand Accounting Jobs for 2016

In-demand accounting jobs for small businesses

There’s no denying that 2015 has been fortuitous for many finance and accounting professionals who work in smaller businesses. And according to the Robert Half Salary Guide for Finance and Accounting, 2016 is going to be another good year.

Certain accounting jobs are in particular demand in small businesses this year. Here’s a summary of those jobs and the kinds of skills and experience you need to land them:

1. Accounting manager

In addition to five years of experience in general accounting, you also need a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance and top-notch communication, tech and analytical skills for this role. Those candidates who have a master’s in business administration (MBA) or a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designation move to the top of the candidate pool. 

2. Compliance officer

Compliance isn’t a concern only for large financial institutions. In the current regulatory climate, many small businesses also need people with knowledge of federal, state and local regulatory guidelines. To land this job, you need three to five years of experience in regulatory compliance, with a bachelor’s degree in business or finance. Communication, organizational and analytical skills are also must-haves in these roles, and finance pros who hold MBAs and CPAs are preferred by employers. 

3. Financial analyst

An increasing reliance on big data means big career opportunities for financial analysts. For this job, you need excellent communication skills, as you’ll regularly be translating numbers for audiences unfamiliar with your area of expertise. Additionally, you need five to 10 years of experience and solid knowledge of general accounting procedures. MBAs are preferred, and having a CPA helps, too. 

4. Payroll professional

Managers and clerks in the payroll department will see their roles among the most in-demand accounting jobs this coming year. Clerks need stellar Microsoft Office and communication skills, as well as a high school education and a knack for customer service. Managers need a bachelor’s degree and five years of experience. A Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) designation, along with proficiency in enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, can help payroll professionals climb the career ladder.

5. Senior accountant

Professionals in this role have been in demand for years, and they’ll continue to be sought after in 2016. In addition to excellent communication, tech and analytical skills, senior accountants need at least three years of experience and a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance. It should come as no surprise that applicants with a CPA or Certified Management Accountant (CMA) accreditation are preferred by hiring managers.

Now that you know what the most in-demand accounting jobs in small business are, you’re probably wondering what kind of salary you can expect. Find out by visiting our Finance and Accounting Salary Center, where you can download the 2016 Salary Guide for easy reference.