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Best place to work as a CPA

i was just wondering where is best to work as a CPA #accounting #cpa

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Alessandra’s Answer

Hi Arturo - That is a great question and one that comes to mind for a lot of people when trying to figure out where to start their career. There are so many great accounting firms out there and each one has their own reasons for why you should work for them! I would encourage you to research large and small accounting firms to learn about their culture, values, client base, etc. to see if it is somewhere where you could see yourself working. Try to come up with a few things that are most important for you to have at the firm you want to work for (ie. a particular client base, the people who work there, the culture, work/life balance, technology, etc.). I would encourage you to meet/talk to, if possible, as many people at different companies to learn about why they chose that particular firm to work for. Further, make sure you are keeping in mind when you do choose where you want to work that it provides you growth in your career. Goodluck!

Thank you comment icon Alessandra - Your answer is great. Thank you so much for sharing your expertise with Arturo! At this moment there are more than 1k unanswered questions so I want to encourage you to keep going! So many students will benefit tremendously from hearing from you. Keep up the great work! Jordan Rivera, Admin COACH
Thank you comment icon thank you for your help Arturo
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Brandon’s Answer

The best place to work depends on your preferences and what you want out of your career. I would consider the following in making your decision:

Size of the company

Salary

Location

Hours worked per week

Travel

Work life balance

Opportunities for Advancement

Line of Service


After considering these factors, I recommend that you look up the different firms and when you interview, keep these items in the back of your mind to ask.

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Michael’s Answer

The great thing about being a CPA is that it opens a lot of career opportunities. The most traditional place for CPAs is in Public Accounting, but you'll find many people who work in Corporate Finance also have CPAs.
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Iman’s Answer

You have lots of great options with a CPA license depending on your goals and passions! Depending on whether or not you are already a CPA, starting at a Big 4 company is a great option because those firms provide fantastic resources for taking your CPA exam including supplying your study materials, exam reimbursement, paid time to take exams and days exclusively for study days.

But all in all, you can go in tons of different directions with a CPA. I would first try to narrow down your personal goals!
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Ryan’s Answer

Hi Arturo, this is a great question. Of course this is very subjective based on personal preferences, however, in general, based on my own experience and discussions with others in the industry, the popular route for CPA's is to start at a Big 4 Accounting Firm. The big 4 consists of PwC, Deloitte, EY, and KPMG. This is the more traditional route for students. However, there are numerous other regional firms that offer similar types of work on a smaller scale.

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Carla’s Answer

The best place to work as a CPA depends on your desired career path and what your work preferences are. As noted in a number of the other responses, starting your career in public accounting, particularly with one of the Big 4 firms, is a great starting point. Determining the right firm for you will be based on your own values and style to find the right fit. Public accounting firms are evolving a lot in the space of flexibility, work life balance, and are constantly evaluating their benefits packages to meet the needs of today's professionals.


There are a number of other options outside of the Big 4, though, like a smaller regional or local CPA firm, working in corporate or non-profit organizations in an accounting or finance role, starting your own business, etc.

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Jim’s Answer

Armanino LLP. Hopefully there's an office near you. If not, there will likely be one soon!
Jim
Thank you comment icon Hi Jim! Thanks for your answer. Could you add some details about why this would be a great place to be a CPA? Alexandra Carpenter, Admin
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Michael Afshin’s Answer

If you can get interviews with Big 4 firms that's likely the best place to start since it looks great on your resume to get a few years at one of the Big 4.


As far as which accounting firm, people will say things like "look at the culture of the firm" but that's pointless (especially within the Big 4) because each office and each group within the same office will have a different culture. For example, my group has a different culture than other tax groups in our office, and the audit groups have an even more different culture.


The best way to decide is to apply to as many firms as possible and interview with people from the office/group you're going to be joining. Remember that these are the same people you will spend more time with than anyone else in your life (8+ hours a day). Don't focus so much on what you'll be doing, but with whom you'll be doing it with. I've found that's more important than the day to day tasks themselves.

Michael Afshin recommends the following next steps:

Apply to as many firms as you can and try to get an interview with each Big 4. You could even try interviewing with different locations for the same firm (I interviewed with PwC in two different office locations).
Get as many interviews as possible with the people you'll be working with/for. These are the people you'll be seeing everyday. Get to know them and see if their attitude/way of life meshes with yours. Ask them what they do in their free time. See if they have a compatible sense of humor.
Focus on which interviewers you felt most comfortable with. Don't worry if it's not the kind of work you think you'll want to do. I've found that the people you work with/for are more likely to influence your job satisfaction than the actual work you're doing.
Thank you comment icon thank you for your help Arturo
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MaryAnn’s Answer

You have a lot of options. I suggest you look into the requirements of becoming a CPA (it's been a while since I've looked). You will likely need to spend some time in a public accounting firm in order to get your license. Within public, you have firms in all sizes. The bigger firms tend to have you specialize earlier than the smaller ones but there could also be more opportunities for rotations or transfers to other teams/offices. Talk to as many CPAs as you can about the type of firms they work for - attend any career fairs and talk to a variety of firms and consider joining accounting associations that will put you in contact with CPAs.

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Jennifer’s Answer

At the start of your career, the best place would be a Big4 Firm, or a large regional firm. These firms look great on the resume, and the firms have great internal training programs. I would recommend that while you are in public accounting, work on clients/projects in as many different industries as you can, so that when (and if) you decide that it is time to leave public accounting, you have an idea about in which industry you would like to work for your next position.
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Mackenzie’s Answer

Hi Arturo!

When you become a CPA, you have a lot of options of places you can work. I think one of the best places to start out is at one of the Big4 accounting firms. Working at the Big4 firms provides you an opportunity to gain a lot of experience in a short period of time. You work with a lot of very intelligent people that do a great job of coaching you and help to set yourself up for success. If you need any help with where to start, would suggest there. Aside from the big4 there are many other regional accounting firms and businesses that you can put your license to use. It really depends on your preferences and what you're passionate about!
Thank you comment icon thank you for your help Arturo
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Shiyoung (David)’s Answer

Hi Arturo,

There are a lot of good comments to your questions by other professionals but I also want to share my experience as a CPA. I have worked at the manufacturing industry as a cost analyst with my CPA license. As a CPA, I could understand the cost flows more easily than other co-workers and, as such, could get good evaluation in my team. Now, as an auditor, my background and knowledge learned from CPA study help me a lot to communicate with clients and co-workers in various accounting situation. The point of these stories is that you could use your knowledge and experience as a CPA into various business field without border. I could surely say that you could get benefit as a CPA in every business field.
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Sabeeka’s Answer

As a CPA, you have the exciting opportunity to explore diverse industries or delve into public accounting. I strongly encourage students to reach out to their internship office or career center to discover internship opportunities during their studies. This hands-on experience will help you identify your true passions and preferences within the field, allowing you to make informed decisions about your future career path. Embrace the possibilities and enjoy the journey!
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