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Accounting Assessment Test: What to Use for Each Job Role

03/14/2024
Accounting Assessment Test What To Use For Each Job Role

Accounting, just like any other career, comes in a variety of shapes, sizes, and levels of responsibility. This is why when you hire for an accounting job, testing relevant skills and knowledge with an accounting assessment test is critical to choosing the right candidate.

With fast-evolving technology and economic recovery in progress, an increased demand for top talent creates new recruitment issues. Many hiring managers are now confronted with a sector-specific skills deficit, further impacted by national trends.

Dr. Bradford Smart, author of Topgrading, outlined that poor hiring practices can cost a company 5 to 27 times the annual compensation of a candidate. However, hiring qualified individuals can result in a 3 times positive annual ROI, as reported by SmallBusinessMatters. 

One simple way to achieve a positive hiring ROI is to establish clear criteria in pre-employment testing. Hiring managers will benefit from knowing which tests to administer, because it saves resources and helps carve out a precise candidate profile.

This article discusses:

Career Levels in Accounting

Accounting can be a rewarding career with many opportunities for growth and advancement. It’s a career that may lead to one of the highest-paid jobs within the organization. 

The job itself requires accountants to be logical and linear thinkers, therefore the roadmap for career progression is just as linear. Like all professions, accounting has many career levels that future accountants can plan for, including the public or private sector.

Although there are various accounting roles and job titles, they can be categorized into roughly three tiers, each with its own requirements, duties, and responsibilities:

  1. Entry-Level Accounting Jobs
  2. Mid-Level Accounting Jobs
  3. Senior-Level Accounting Jobs

The below descriptions will show what each tier entails.

Unveiling the Right Accounting Assessment Test for Entry-Level Roles

Accounting positions often require a master’s degree, but graduates with an associate or bachelor’s degree may be suitable for certain entry-level positions. Most employees in these positions will have up to 2 years of accounting experience. Some jobs in the entry-level accounting jobs category are:

  1. Accounts Payable/Receivable Specialist
  2. Audit Associate
  3. Bookkeeper
  4. Financial Analyst
  5. Junior Accountant
  6. Accounting Clerk

Accounting clerks and assistants are found at the bottom of the accounting career structure. They support accountants by inputting data, processing accounts payable, processing payroll, and performing preliminary number-crunching on accounts payable and receivable.

Accountants and analysts are a level above them. Their responsibilities can include, reporting, payroll, invoicing, accounts payables, receivables, and vendor qualification. 

Depending on the workload, these responsibilities are typically split among people in larger organizations. In smaller businesses, a single accountant may be expected to handle all of these responsibilities.

Because much of the work performed by entry-level roles revolve around data entry, invoicing, reporting, and payroll, it’s critical that hiring managers use pre-employment tests to screen applicants for relevant skills. 

Consider administering pre-employment tests that assess applicants’ attention to detail, typing and data entry skills, basic accounting skills, and Microsoft Excel skills

Accounting Assessment Test For Each Job Role

Choose the Perfect Accounting Assessment Test for Mid-Level Roles

Accountants with more experience rise to mid-level roles that require managing people and processes. They are frequently promoted to a senior-level post after serving in a mid-level position for 2 to 8 years

This may be a rewarding time for accountants, as they develop proficiency in accounting procedures, stretch their leadership skills and begin to create opportunities for themselves in either the public or private sectors.

Jobs that belong to the mid-level accounting jobs category are:

  1. Accounting Analyst
  2. Accounting Manager
  3. Audit Manager
  4. Cost Accountant
  5. Finance Manager
  6. Tax Manager

Accounting managers are equal to mid-level business managers in the accounting career structure. An accounting manager’s primary responsibilities include supervising financial and supporting staff within a company. They prepare general ledgers, financial reports, annual audits, and budgets.

Accounting managers and staff accountants are responsible for a number of tasks, including general ledger maintenance, financial statement review, financial report preparation, audit and budgeting assistance, and account reconciliation. 

A great staff accountant should also have excellent communication, organizational, and analytical skills, so testing for those abilities is critical when hiring for this position.

Mid-level accountants with solid experience earned through entry-level jobs can have a chance of being promoted to senior-level roles. Effective communication skills are necessary as mid-level accountants have people working over and below them. 

At the same time, being able to supervise and oversee all accounting processes is a required skill to have.

As it can be hard to know applicants’ true skills based on resumes and interviews, employers should consider testing for accounting knowledge skillsmanagement aptitude, and supervisor aptitude skills to ensure that the correct applicant is hired for the job.

Discover the Best Accounting Assessment Test for Senior-Level Roles

When transitioning from a junior to a senior position, accountants must exhibit a professional understanding of accounting principles, familiarity with GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles), and the capacity to grasp business processes and strategies. 

Jobs that belong to the senior-level accounting jobs category are:

  1. Audit Director
  2. Chief Financial Officer
  3. Controller
  4. Director Of Finance
  5. Senior Accountant
  6. Vice President Of Accounting

Superior analytical and problem-solving abilities, as well as knowledge of accounting software, make it possible for senior-level accountants to take responsibility for reporting expenses, productivity, margins, and expenditures for businesses and organizations. 

Unlike junior accountants, they usually are not required to conduct admin duties like data collection, balance sheet population, or journal entry updating. Instead, this data gets delivered to them in the form of daily/weekly/monthly reports.

Senior accountants undertake complicated strategic accounting initiatives and financial analysis using their hands-on accounting expertise and an in-depth understanding of accounting principles and company practices. 

In some cases, senior accountants act as liaisons, enforcing and monitoring adherence to company-wide accounting standards and processes in all departments.

As senior roles have the longest list of job requirements, employers should consider using accounting assessment tests such as management aptitude and supervisor aptitude

Being able to influence others, delegate work, and manage stress are often the primary attributes that differentiate a senior-level accountant from an entry-level accountant. In addition, senior-level employees often supervise their subordinates and motivate them to do a better job.

Using management aptitude tests for senior-level accountants can give hiring managers information on reliability, helping disposition, and the self-confidence of potential candidates.

Test Smarter, Not Harder 

Because an effective and experienced accounting team is critical to the success of any organization, there is a strong emphasis on making smart hiring decisions from the start. 

One of the most common ways to evaluate a candidate’s accounting and bookkeeping abilities, as well as their management skills, is by using accounting assessment tests. 

Accounting knowledge testspre-employment math tests, or other pre-employment tests are all helpful tools that HR managers can use to evaluate potential candidates. These tests can help businesses to accurately assess a candidate’s skills and abilities and to determine if they are the right fit for the job.

For more information on the importance of pre-employment tests for accountants, check out the article “Accounting Shortage: How Pre-Employment Tests Can Help.” 

Curious if pre-employment testing can help you identify the rock star candidates you’re looking for? Try a free sample test to experience how you can recruit smarter, not harder, using an accounting assessment test.