Career and Job Search Guide

Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerk

Clerks performing auditing, accounting, and bookkeeping maintain financial records. These clerks have a variety of duties. These clerks must understand how to use computers and calculators since they perform numerous calculations daily.

Bookkeeping clerks working for small businesses are responsible for the general ledger. Bookkeeping clerks record every company expense known as debits, and all company revenue known as credits. They write reports for management and prepare financial statements. They also deposit checks, purchase supplies, and coordinate payroll for the company.

Accounting clerks employed by larger companies usually have specialized responsibilities. For example, clerks specialize in accounts receivable and payable, and their duties are usually determined by how much experience they have. Clerks hired in entry level positions record transactions and inspect accounts to make sure all of a company's bills have been paid. Accounting clerks with more experience may review information listed in accounts to make sure it is accurate.

Accounting clerks record financial transactions. Senior clerks compare records, such as computer and operating records, to make sure all the information listed is accurate, as well as review invoices for accuracy.

Auditing clerks inspect the listed transactions of other employees to verify accuracy. They also make sure documents are properly coded, and notify other accountants when they notice an error needing to be fixed.

Clerks use accounting software to complete their work. Most information is now entered into computers and stored electronically. Because of advances in accounting software, clerks sometimes take on payroll and billing duties. These added responsibilities require clerks to interact more closely with clients.

Work environment. These clerks work in offices. Since they sit in front of computers all day, they can experience back pain, eyestrain, and headaches. While examining data, clerks sit for long periods of time.

Clerks working in auditing, accounting, and bookkeeping usually work 40 hour weeks, sometimes working nights and weekends. In 2006, 24 percent were employed part time.

These clerks work longer hours near the end of the fiscal year, during tax season, and whenever deadlines are set. Moreover, clerks working in retail stores, restaurants, and hotels work more during the holidays and during periods of peak tourism.