If you would like to advance your career in payroll accounting, an online accounting degree program paves the way for success. Online accounting courses teach the basics of financial software packages, as well as accounting and tax principles. Here are five ways payroll accountants benefit from an accounting education.
1. Understanding Taxation
As part of an online accounting degree program, students learn how to prepare tax returns for income-earning individuals. Payroll accountants are responsible for preparing the pay returns provided to employees to prepare their year-end taxes. A company's payroll department also calculates the amount of taxes to be withheld from paychecks and remitted to the federal government. Gaining an understanding of employee income and benefit taxation in online accounting courses will add to your value as a payroll professional.
2. Account Reconciliation
An online accounting degree program teaches students to reconcile financial differences among accounts and prepare financial reports. On the job, payroll accountants spend time reconciling the total company's salaries and benefits expense to the sum of individual paychecks. If an employee's paycheck is incorrect, he or she will definitely question the difference, especially if they have been underpaid. Payroll accountants must be able to work with employees to correct and explain payroll discrepancies.
If employers offer benefits, such as medical insurance or a 401(k) plan, there is often a great deal of compliance required to ensure employees qualify for these perks. Payroll accountants must maintain the necessary paperwork to prove employees are entitled to benefits based on salary or time of service. Governmental regulation is also strict in the payroll area, and also sometimes at the federal, state and local levels. Performing compliance reporting is often a daily responsibility of those working in the compensation and benefits areas of a company.
4. Accounting Software
An online accounting degree program familiarizes you with accounting software packages. Many of these packages have payroll modules, which are used in the business world for reporting and payment purposes. By gaining software knowledge before seeking a new job, you will make yourself all the more marketable to potential employers.
5. Foundation for Professional Certification
Individuals wishing to become a certified payroll professional
must first have a basic understanding of accounting before gaining real work experience and passing the CPP exam. An online accounting degree program can provide you with the necessary knowledge to begin your career in payroll accounting and also assist you with exam preparation. Attaining the CPP credential will make you all the more desirable in the field of payroll accounting and provide you with an edge over job seekers lacking the CPP designation.
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