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Career Story: Accountant In The Healthcare Industry

Accountant In The Healthcare Industry

Job Title: Senior Accountant

Type of Company: My company manages nursing homes, provides clinical consulting, rehab therapy services, and offers staffing services.

Education: BS, Finance, Boston College •• MBA, Northeastern University

Previous Experience: I have worked in long-term care finance, reimbursement, budgeting, and accounting for 20 years. I have been an accountant for the last 6 years.

Job Tasks: I start the day by checking emails, faxes, and other work left on my desk before I get in the office. Once I deal with any emails that need to be answered right away, I start working on my goals for the day. One day I may be focused on processing accounts payable invoices for payment. Another day I might be focused on entering journal entries for financial statements. Another day I might have to work with a team of auditors reviewing my financial statements.

A very important part of my job is reconciling the balance sheets of my nursing homes. A balance sheet that is reconciled gives you confidence that your numbers are correct. If there are amounts in your balance sheet that don't make sense then you will have problems. It is very important to reconcile your balance sheets on a monthly or quarterly basis to make sure nothing is missed.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is knowing that my financial statements are accurate.

The worst part of my job is dealing with deadlines. Senior management and board members expect financial statements within 2 weeks of the end of the previous month and it is very difficult to balance accuracy with timeliness.

Job Tips: You really have to love working with numbers and be detail-oriented if you would like to be an accountant. You have to be able to see the big picture as well as understand how all the pieces of the balance sheet affect the financial statements.

Additional Thoughts: You need to have thick skin to be an accountant. It is not a glamorous, well-paid position. You won't get rewarded for finishing your work on time and accurately. It is simply expected. On the other hand, it is very rewarding to know that you have given your best and provided accurate and timely information for people to use to make important decisions.

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