Account Officer Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: September 30, 2021

An Account Officer, or Account Supervisors, takes care of the financial bookkeeping and records of an organization. Their duties include recording transactions, payments and expenses and processing invoices. They also send out bills and invoices, follow up on overdue payments and ensure that a company’s invoices and payments match up correctly by cross-checking the original document to the company’s record. Account Officers work with other professionals in the accounting department like Bookkeepers and Account Clerks to make sure the company’s finances are accurately recorded.

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Account Officer duties and responsibilities

The main goal of an Account Officer is to manage a company’s financial records, though an organization’s size and specific industry may affect their general duties and responsibilities. Some of their common daily tasks include:

  • Creating and processing invoices
  • Cross-checking invoices with payments and expenses to ensure accuracy
  • Managing a company’s accounts payable and receivable
  • Sending bills and invoices to clients
  • Tracking organization expenses
  • Processing refunds 
  • Working with collection agencies on overdue payments
  • Communicating with clients regarding billing and payments
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What does an Account Officer do?

Account Officers, in many cases, supervise an organization’s general bookkeeping staff and monitor all account transactions. They perform accounting duties and managerial responsibilities in their role. Employing a skilled Account Officer can help a company create and maintain accurate, extensive financial records and process payments and invoices with greater efficiency. Many companies and industries hire Account Officers to manage their bookkeeping. Some large companies hire multiple Account Officers, overseen by a Chief Account Officer.

Account Officer skills and qualifications

An Account Officer should have the following skills and qualifications in order to handle their job duties effectively:

  • Adept computer skills and proficiency using programs like QuickBooks and Microsoft Excel
  • Advanced math skills to keep accurate records and supervise the bookkeeping of an organization
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills to interact regularly with clients regarding sensitive topics like billing and payments
  • Excellent organization skills for maintaining clear, accurate and meticulous financial records for a company
  • Attention to detail for ensuring the accuracy of a company’s records and invoices
  • Multitasking in order to successfully handle multiple accounts, invoices and payments at various stages of execution
  • Excellent efficiency for handling any accounting issues quickly with minimal interference

Account Officer salary expectations

The average salary of an Account Officer is $69,143 per year. This salary can vary depending on the business sector an Account Officer is involved in, from science and technical services to retail trade.

Account Officer education and training requirements

Though postsecondary education isn’t always necessary to become an Account Officer, it does help distinguish candidates who apply for the job. Some employers prefer applicants who have earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance or business management, while others may hire candidates with less education for entry-level positions. Many organizations at least look for candidates who have taken some accounting and bookkeeping classes, such as analysis and reporting of financial data, payroll accounting, accounting theories and tax preparation, among others. Companies may also seek out individuals with relevant certifications, such as the Certified Public Accountant or Certified Bookkeeper designations.

Account Officer experience requirements

Employers typically look for candidates who have previous experience in accounting and bookkeeping, but this specific experience is not always necessary. Different organizations have different bookkeeping systems, invoicing methods and accounting practices, so some amount of training and adjustment to a new organization will always be necessary. Therefore, it’s more important that a prospective Account Officer demonstrates good organizational skills, communication skills and attention to detail. Organizations often prefer applicants with relevant experience, however, and many candidates acquire this in similar jobs, such as in a business or financial position like a Financial Analyst, Accountant or Loan Officer.

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Frequently asked questions about Account Officers

 

What's the difference between an Accountant and an Account Officer?

Accountants and Account Officers perform some of the same job duties, depending on the organization for which they work. For example, both Accountants and Account Officers oversee teams of finance professionals and ensure their company’s bookkeeping is accurate. Their education and training are very different, however. 

Accountants must earn a bachelor’s degree in finance or a related field before taking an exam that licenses them as a Certified Public Accountant, or a CPA. 

Account Officers, by contrast, are not required to earn a four-year degree, though some do. Many Account Officers hone the hard and soft skills necessary for the position through entry-level positions like account clerk before promoting into the role of Account Officer. 

 

What should you look for on an Account Officer resume?

Account Officers should have certain skills, both hard and soft, to perform their jobs. When reviewing a potential Account Officer’s resume, ensure they have the appropriate education, training and skills to perform the job. Some of the most common qualifications for Account Officers include:

  • Financial software literacy: Many Account Officers use programs like Microsoft Excel or QuickBooks to manage multiple accounts. 
  • Math abilities: Account Officers must have strong number literacy.
  • Communication: Some Account Officers manage teams and interact with customers. Communication skills are vital to ensure everyone understands their responsibilities. 
  • Organization: Account Officers must have excellent organizational skills to make sure all financial record keeping is accurate. 
  • Attention to detail: Account Officers must focus on their work and check all their data entries for accuracy. 
  • Multi-tasking abilities: Many Account Officers work with multiple clients simultaneously. They must carefully multi-task to ensure everyone’s records are correct. 

 

What are common Account Officer interview questions?

Account Officer interviews often feature a few consistent questions to ensure they have the necessary skills and experience to perform the job well. Review these common Account Officer interview questions to prepare for your next interview with a potential Account Officer:

  • “Do you have any experience with accounting software? If so, which ones?”
  • “How do you prioritize assignments when you have tight deadlines?”
  • “Do you have any accounting licenses or certifications? What positions have you worked in at past jobs?”
  • “How would you handle an upset customer?”
  • “What steps do you take when a client is late paying their bills?”

 

What makes a good Account Officer?

Excellent Account Officers have a great balance of financial literacy and management skills. A keen understanding of mathematics is vital to perform the responsibilities of the position, but since many Account Officers oversee a team or work with other bookkeeping professionals, communication and management are just as important.

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    Last updated: Apr 28, 2021