For any business or organisation to function effectively, one of the important aspects it relies on is the role played by accountants. Accountants look after the financial aspects of a company and ensure that they comply with legal requirements. They provide the information that is needed for the evaluation of the company’s financial performance and for making business decisions.
Yolisa Nkomonde has been a trainee accountant at Mazars for the past year. We spent some time chatting to her about her role at Mazars, and this is what she had to say:
1. How did you get into the accounting field?
I have loved accounting from a young age, so I always knew that I would pursue a career in the accounting profession. I obtained my BCom in accounting and BCom Honours in taxation. After this, I was offered a position as a Trainee Accountant, here at Mazars.
2. What are the requirements for working in accounting?
A recognised qualification in accounting is what you need. I would say a BTech in accounting meets the minimum requirements.
3. What are your main responsibilities and daily activities?
My main responsibilities and activities are dependent on where we are in the month. In the first week of the month, I draft annual financial statements for different entities. The last two weeks of the month we are busy with VAT calculations for the monthly clients we have. Other activities are attending to client queries, requesting information from clients and attending meetings and any training sessions that are scheduled.
4. What are the challenges in your job?
The constant changes in the accounting practice and laws can be challenging. You must always be up to date with things like tax legislation. Another challenge for me is the time constraint. There is so much that needs to be done, but there is never enough time.
5. What are your future plans for your career?
My goal is to become a competent professional accountant. I want to pass the Professional Evaluation and become a member of the South African Institute of Professional Accountants.
6. What advice do you have for other people looking to enter this field of work?
My advice is that anyone looking to enter this field needs to study hard. I would say try by all means to get the highest academic qualification and work hard. It is not easy to study but it is worth it, especially if you have a passion for this kind of work and a clear goal for your career. Those who succeed and thrive in this industry are the ones who are willing to learn and always work hard. You should also be a team player and have the ability to interact well with different people, since you meet and work with a variety of people.
While the duties of an accountant may be focused on the financial aspects, accountants also need good communication skills to be able to explain the meaning of the financial information. Along with this, they also need to be able to analyse and interpret the financial findings.
Do you think you have what it takes to enter the financial field?