Career Options: Audit Intern

ImageHave you ever wondered what it would be like to work in a certain career or hold a specific position? I wanted to give you all some insight as to what it was like for me to be an Audit Intern at a medium sized CPA firm. I wanted to inform you what my day entailed. Lastly, I wanted to give you some insight as to how to get such a position.

What I Did…

Please understand that every position and company can be different, so I am only writing about my own experiences. The company that I worked for mostly audited government agencies, so the busy season came during the second half of the year. While I was in school, we agreed I would work 3 eight hour days during the week. Because the company was smaller than a Big 4 accounting firm, I got a wider range of duties than the average intern. My travel ranged from 5 minutes to 2 hours depending on which organization we were auditing.

My day consisted of reviewing financial statements and making sure the information was correct. Each line item in the financial statement had a to-do list that needed to be completed. We were there to prove what was on the financial statements was correct. Sometimes that meant witnessing the inventory ourselves or selecting samples documentation to make sure the procedures were followed correctly. At the end of the audit, I would be the final editor. I would check spelling, grammar, and the math of the final financial statement.

What is was like…

If you are one of those people who likes to work by yourself, this may be a good position for you. To me, the job was very lonely. You typically did your work at the agency that you were auditing. Most of the time those employees did not was to talk to you because they were scared of you. At times, we had a group of auditors in a conference room, so I did get to work in a group setting. As an auditor you are required to travel, so you may have to spend the night out of town. It is important to understand the difference between and internal; and external auditor. I was external, meaning I was coming in from the outside and I did not work for the agency itself. I was hired by the agency to do a job.

The position pays well, especially for a student. I have seen hourly wages range from $15-30/hour. If income it important to you, this may be an ideal position.

The hours count towards your CPA experience. If you are working under a CPA, your hours will count towards your CPA certification. You do not have to graduate to start the work experience portion of the CPA certification.

You can move up pretty quickly. If you work hard and pass your CPA exam it is rather easy to keep moving up in these type of organizations. The supply of good, hard-working, Certified Public Accountants is just not as high as the demand. I know many people who pass their exam and got an immediate bump in salary and tittle within the company.

How to get the job…

Start looking early. Most people wait until the last semester to look for an internship. Most organization that I spoke to at Meet The Firms were wanting to hire students in the sophomore or junior year of college. If you get in early and work your but off, you will be ahead of the game.

Have the career center look at your resume. You would hate for a small mistake to keep you from getting that dream job.

Get great grades. Most accounting positions or internships had a minimum GPA requirement, especially in your accounting courses. Make sure you pay attention to your overall and major GPA.

Network! Get to know your classmates, your fellow accounting club members, your teachers, and the companies you want to work for. I first went to an informational meeting for the CPA firm, through the accounting club. Then I introduced myself again at Meet The Firms. After meeting them a few times and keeping in contact, they offered me an interview.

Ace the interview. Review your material. Although if you get good grades, you should understand the basic questions they may throw at you. Review the job description and what you talked about in past conversations. Think about what the company wants and how you can fill that for them. Dress the part, I have never seen an accounting interview that was less than business professional. Practice, Practice, Practice. I used the career center to get a mock interview.


Your Health and Your Work.

Yoga Class at a Gym Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs

Yoga Class at a Gym Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I understand as much as the next person that your job is important, but YOU are important too. You may like your job. You may like your salary. You may like being busy or you may like the praise. Whatever the case may be, your job can not be your life. You should be living a healthy lifestyle while you are being a good employee. Really, I think living a healthy lifestyle will help you be a good employee.

Here is some advice to keep a healthy lifestyle while working hard.

1. Work in some activity– Go for a walk on your lunch break. Take your kids on a hike on the weekends. Go for a jog before work. Take the dog for a walk.

2. Work in some healthy eating– I not saying you should take 2 hours to make dinner, but you should work in some healthy choices. I always try to eat something for breakfast. I have room at my job for a little pantry. At the beginning of the week I bring in fruit, bread, peanut butter, soup, and snacks. I bring in a bag of carrots as much as possible. I try to make or order healthy dinners, but sometimes it doesn’t always work out that way.

3. Visit the doctor- Whatever issues you may be experience, big or small, you should see your doctor and listen to him or her. You may find that your life is a lot easier if you figure out whats wrong. See me blog about fatigue and how seeing my doctor changed my life.

4. Visit your dentist– Some people avoid the dentist at all cost, but having issues in your mouth could hinder your success. You would hate to have to leave work on a busy day because you have a tooth ache.

5. Understand mental health- relaxation and stress relief activities can make you more productive. Not to mention, you may like your job a lot more if your not stressed out about it all the time. It is very important to work in relaxation and fun. Take a yoga class or go out with your friend on the weekend.