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Old 03-19-2010, 06:40 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,025,696 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avant-garde View Post
Do you see possible automation of CPA jobs in the near future?
...the "future technologies" group at Arthur Anderson (back when they were both a consulting firm and the largest accounting firm) developed an Artificial Intelligence system that was capable of analyzing problems and producing the same suggested solution as their top accounting partner. It was more of an interest of the CS professor at Northwestern than a real business solution, but the real problem was that all the true leaders of the firm knew that their value was NOT in "technically accurate" solutions, but solutions that their clients felt was worth the money the firm collected. You cannot automate humans making other humans feel like a great big firm has "got your back".

Sadly when AA was exposed as "having the back" of Enron and Enron was defrauding their investors the resulting meltdown caused AA to evaporate.

Moral of the story: Neither technology nor technically correct solutions will substitute for a human ethical grounding.

Expert systems and artificial ... - Google Books
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Old 03-19-2010, 08:39 PM
 
36 posts, read 65,327 times
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Here is my opnion of cpa, after meeting about 15 of them at a cpa conference in la

pros:
-after 5 years of becoming a cpa, you will have great pay, 6 digits almost guaranteed
-the job moves from technical to networking and client finding, new cpas, will work for you as you move closer to partner, you will no longer have to do all that number crunching and paper working
cons:
-first 5 years suck
-you get stuck with all the boring crap for the first 5 years
-your job is not fun by a long shot
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:23 PM
 
297 posts, read 844,964 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chet everett View Post
...the "future technologies" group at Arthur Anderson (back when they were both a consulting firm and the largest accounting firm) developed an Artificial Intelligence system that was capable of analyzing problems and producing the same suggested solution as their top accounting partner. It was more of an interest of the CS professor at Northwestern than a real business solution, but the real problem was that all the true leaders of the firm knew that their value was NOT in "technically accurate" solutions, but solutions that their clients felt was worth the money the firm collected. You cannot automate humans making other humans feel like a great big firm has "got your back".
Yes but this applies to "great big firms"... what if a small firm, in order to compete with the more established firms, decided to use automation and charged much much less than the established firms for their service?

Then the bigger firms would need to compete with their price by lowering theirs, and thus would be forced to get rid of their human accountants.
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:56 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,025,696 times
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There is no advantage to being cheaper or even "more agile" when comes to certain kinds of professional service. The firms that hire the big "got your back" type CPA firms need to have a third party put their blessing on all the odd one off accounting they do. Of course 95%+ of the stuff is run of the mile, but that is not what they need blessed...
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Old 03-22-2010, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
5,517 posts, read 9,393,594 times
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[quote=novaseline;13366483]Here is my opnion of cpa, after meeting about 15 of them at a cpa conference in la

pros:

Quote:
Originally Posted by novaseline View Post
-after 5 years of becoming a cpa, you will have great pay, 6 digits almost guaranteed
This depends almost exclusively where you live. I am frequently seeing CPA required jobs in the Hampton Roads area advertised between 40-50k a year.
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Old 03-22-2010, 12:48 PM
Rei
 
Location: Los Angeles
494 posts, read 1,671,002 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truckingbronco View Post
I decided to play along and checked indeed.com for electrical engineers and got approx 35,000 hits, not "over 70,000". Approx 25,000 of these jobs were over $60,000. CPA came back with approx 35,000 hits all over the $50k mark, with approx 25,000 over $70,000.

Now, this is a stupid comparison for two reasons: Engineering and a CPA can both be good opportunities, the amount of opportunity in one has nothing to do with the amount of opportunity in another. Second, Indeed.com is at best an extremly rough estimate of employment availability. Most jobs, above entry level, never make it to job boards as they're filled internally or through networking. This is even more true today as HR departments are overwhelmed with resumes if they dare post something in public.
Comparing the salary and number of openings of CPA vs Electrical Engineer is very stupid to do. It's like comparing apples and oranges.
For one CPA means you have certificate to do public accounting, where on the other hand unless you work in infrastructures or anything that directly related to the public, electrical engineers do not need to have a PE license.

Last edited by Rei; 03-22-2010 at 02:12 PM..
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Old 03-26-2010, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
897 posts, read 2,313,954 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truckingbronco View Post
Wow, that's a long post and I don't have time to respond to each detail. I will say that you're wrong and quoting job boards and website may give you a sense of affirmation but it's hardly confirmation of your opinions. You have a chip on your shoulder, I get that. However, it makes your sweeping statements even less relevant.

I'm a CPA, so as a result, I know several CPAs in a variety of positions and locations, so I'm speaking from first hand knowledge. If you're a CPA (not a bookkeeper or accountant) and you're making under $40k, you need to find a new job because you suck at the one you have. Also, there is no glass ceiling at $50k or $75k as you seem to imply. Those numbers can easily be reached within a few years of graduation as evidenced by other posters on this thread. You're probably the first person I've come across who thinks it's better to have a certification with zero entry barriers as opposed to one that's difficult to obtain.

I'm not sure why you're resorting to calling me an idiot, but go ahead if it makes you feel better. Good luck on your new career.
To back up your statement. I know 3 tax accountants all three had about 6 to 10 years of experience each. The three worked at Large/Medium companies. They made 120k , 140k, and 149k. I saw their pay stubs. 2 of the 3 were managers, but when they were not they made about 90 to 100k . All three had cpa's and went to nobody colleges.
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Old 03-26-2010, 11:14 PM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
897 posts, read 2,313,954 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randomdude View Post
So now you are comparing legit accounting job offer postings with rediculous scams. That makes sense. Tell me ass wipe, what exactly, in your mind, would be legit proof of what Im saying? Ive already posted Indeed.com search results, USAjobs search results and Robert Half, which is one of the top national accounting and finance placement firms, job postings.




The above sites all agree its the rule as well. Would you like me to go ahead and start posting craigslist ads? Local newspaper results? What exactly is it going to take to shut you up?




She STARTED at 50k with a masters degree at a Big 4. This automatically already set her FAR apart from most other people who graduated with an accounting degree, or are in the accounting field. Less then 1/6 of all accounting grads get a job at the Big 4. Thats not even accounting 10's of thousands of Finance and other business grads who filtered in to the accounting profession because of no jobs in their fields.




Two out of two CPAs I personally know said it was overrated, one of them saying it was outright easy. I think the failure rate and perpetuated "difficulty" rumor of the test is largely attributable to preparedness of the average test taker. It might have something to do with the exclusion of many people with years and even decades of experience in the field, in favor of some kid with a masters degree and an accounting internship.

Even assuming it is difficult, the value of it is directly in proportion to the number of people that have it. Enough people have managed to pass this test that CPA is now a certification businesses are searching for to apply to their staff accountants and even AP clerks. In 6 years, when those 203,000 people in accounting programs graduate, lets say 25,000 of them get masters degrees and about 13,000 of them get CPAs. How much cheaper do you think the CPA is going to be? Do you think 13,000 Senior Level jobs are going to open up? No, they arent. Computers and outsourcing are limiting accounting staffs as it is. The only thing that will happen is that businesses will suddenly find themselves able to fill bottom feeder jobs previously held by high school grads, with masters degree holding CPAs. The field will resemble social work, or teaching, where a Masters Degree is pretty much a requirement just to get an entry level job.



1. I am bitter. I wasted not only 4 years of school, but 6 years of post school in a non lucrative field. If I would have stuck to Aerospace Engineering, I would have likely been in a cushy government job making atleast 85k a year.

2. You directly judged the Cisco Certs in a previous post.




What the hell are you talking about? What you are literally saying here is that Im claiming that Engineering is good, and that must make a CPA bad, since both cannot be good. Thats not remotely what Im claiming. I am claiming that a CPA is worth less then the hassle of getting it, because you can spend equivalent time doing something else that would be more lucrative at the same ending point.



Gee, I wonder who presents a better case, me with loads of third party supporting literature, or you, a pissed off vindictive crybaby upset that someone bashed their profession, and uses empirical "evidence" including such winners as "I dont know anyone making that" to debunk such 3rd party literature.

Why dont you try to build an argument that doesnt involve empirical evidence? Why dont you try to find one ounce of evidence that supports your claims?



Bottom line is I washed out? You dont even know me, so dont pretend to.

By the way, speaking of failures, Im guessing you work for someone else? Does that high salary make you a success? Or does it just make you a lucky **** with *** stains around your mouth? I pray you never feel the affects of your flooded profession. I dont think you can handle the reality that your "skill" has been cheapened to the point of liberal arts wages in 85% of the country.
Maybe you should read robert half website. They claimed that public accounting large firm made 47.5k to 66k at the jr level 0-3 years and sr level 4 to 6 years is 64k to 83k. They said add 10 to 15% to the average pay if you have a cpa. So even at the low end of jr level you would start at 55k.
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Old 03-29-2010, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
5,517 posts, read 9,393,594 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shibainu View Post
Maybe you should read robert half website. They claimed that public accounting large firm made 47.5k to 66k at the jr level 0-3 years and sr level 4 to 6 years is 64k to 83k. They said add 10 to 15% to the average pay if you have a cpa. So even at the low end of jr level you would start at 55k.

Do you know what a large public accounting firm is? That is basically the Big 4. Yeah, people who are lucky enough to get in to the Big 4 (which is something like 10% of all accounting grads), can punch their ticket, especially if they have a CPA. I already acknowledged that.

The problem with that is, most people in accounting work in the corporate sector, and most of them work for smaller end companies.

Bottom line is, if you dont get on with the Big 4, or atleast a decent sized public accounting firm, you should probably just hang accounting up right there.
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Old 01-25-2012, 02:59 AM
 
1 posts, read 4,429 times
Reputation: 12
Default This is old... but really?

engineering vs. accounting? This is an interesting debate. The argument between a seriously strict engineering fan and others who show support to an equally lucrative field. The fact is, both have potential for large income (as the average college student sees it). Think about it. When you went to college, did you consider only monetary value of your degree? Did you consider enjoyment and quality of life in your career decision? The fact is not everyone wants to be an engineer or CPA. And yes, I capitalized CPA, because that is the way it is supposed to be. (It was earned). There is a reason people major in other areas in addition to the commonly debated lucrative professions, which is not exclusive to engineering or accounting. If you don't like the work you do, then you will never be happy regardless of if you make 100k a year or not. Now that I have that out of the way, I will address what stood out as outrageous in this conversation. Both an accounting and an engineering degree are very lucrative fields. Both have the opportunity to enable you to become profitable, provided you put in the time. It has been stated that the common accounting major (90% if I am not mistaken, due to the 10% hire rate at the Big 4) will not make near what an engineering major does. This may be true due to starting salary. However, this is comparing accounting majors, and not CPA's. The majority of accounting majors are pursuing their CPA, however the first time pass rate is below 50%. If this does not explain the difficulty, it is often thought to be more difficult that Lawyers and Doctors exams for certification (though I am not stating any is more difficult than the next). What exam does an engineer have to take in order to be certified as a professional? This is not counting specified areas, due to the fact that if you include this... there is a laundry list of accounting certifications that are just as difficult as the CPA exam. Next, the thought that obtaining a CPA is the equivalent of obtaining a masters degree is completely false. To sit for the CPA exam in most states requires 30 additional credit hours compared with simply graduating with a bachelors degree. This does not mean you have gained a masters. Many people sitting for the CPA exam with their additional 30 credit hours have simply double majored, or delayed majoring long enough that they already had the credits it requires to sit for the exam. (The credits do require some accounting hours, but can often be fulfilled with normal bachelors requirements if accounting is decided late in college). Once again, most accounting majors are planning on attaining their CPA. Now that we have decided most accounting majors are looking to grasp their CPA license in order to be sought after in the job market, lets talk about the saturation of CPA's that has been spoke of. Not only is the accounting field said to be one of the largest growing professions in the current future but, virtually all business', a large amount of individuals, and even the government need to have accountants. With increased regulations, due to meltdowns such as Enron and Worldcom, the accounting profession becomes more and more sought after to protect the public interest. The accounting profession as a whole will never be automated, because there is a human element that cannot be accounted for by a computer. Despite the increased demand for CPA's, it is also projected that over the next ten years CPA's will see one of the largest workforce losses with a majority of employed CPA's being within 10 years of retirement. This shows that not only will job opportunity increase, but so will demand. Therefore, the current influx of accounting majors is a non-factor in determining salaries for future graduates. The difference lies in the future earnings potential. Public accounting, the big 4 for instance, have one of the highest new employee turnover ratios of any profession. This is due to the demanding hours and little pay you see as a staff accountant. However, public accounting is viewed as a pyramid. For the few that make it through the first two years, salary is exponentially increased and often doubled. This increase in salary can be from moving up in the public accounting rankings to senior, manager, or partner, or moving to industry where you take a job as assistant controller, CFO, or CEO. The future earnings potential is much greater for a majority of accounting majors than it is for a select few of engineering grads. Truth be told, an accounting major who does not attain their CPA will not earn as much as an engineering grad who is gainfully employed with a mediocre job (in the field of engineering). However, for the 90% of accounting grads who are looking to attain their CPA license and 60% of those who succeed, initial income may be lower, but in 10 years it will more likely than not be higher than your engineering friend who did not understand what an asset or liability was in the first place. Because, the average college grad must work until they are near 60 years old to retire that is almost 30 years of potential higher salary. Also, you do not have to work at the "BIG 4" to be successful in accounting. There are a vast majority of smaller firms that offer excellent opportunities, from training, salary, right up to ownership. If all else fails, rest assured that if you become a CPA, your friend the engineer will come to you asking for help with his taxes (regardless of if you are in the tax, audit, or consulting department)!
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