How to Become an Accountant NZ

Claudia Reiners

The Accounting industry is one of the most sound that you can become a part of.

Just about every organisation requires an Accountant in one way or another, which is why the Accounting industry is perfect for those who want to prosper in a career that is never lacking in opportunity.

Read here for the ultimate guide to different types of accounting.

Accounting 101

Accountants are responsible for providing services such as financial reporting, taxation and accounting systems, as well as planning, budgeting and cost management for both organisations and individuals along with various other duties. Becoming an accountant means that you must uphold a high level of professionalism, as client relationships are the foundation of the accounting industry.

Check out these accounting courses to help you become an accountant.

What do accountants do?

Several skills are necessary when working as an accountant. These include:

  • Prepare documentation related to accounts payable and receivable
  • Produce invoices and forward payments
  • Estimate and research the costs of advised expenses, wages and standard costs
  • Provide bank reconciliations
  • Allot expenditure to budget accounts
  • Record cost variations and contract price movements
  • Produce cost data for operating budgets, profit and loss calculations
  • Analyse the costs of estimated expenses and evaluations

Accountant personal requirements

  • Systematic and precise, with an excellent eye for detail
  • Must have the ability to work well under pressure
  • Abilities to examine and understanding data
  • Abilities in coordinating and planning
  • Skilled in problem-solving
  • Excellent communicators

How to become an accountant in NZ

To begin a career in accounting, you must have one of the following qualifications via accounting courses in NZ:

Study accounting online

Online accounting courses are the perfect study method for those who are looking to gain a qualification, however cannot fit full-time classroom study into their busy schedules. With the convenience and flexibility of online education, updating your skillset has been made simple.

It is predicted that the Accounting industry will have moderate growth in upcoming years, to keep up with growing demand for accounting services and financial advice.

Accounting careers

Accounting qualifications can lead to a variety of career paths. Once you’ve finished your studies, you could end up as a:

  • Accounts Administrator
  • Accounts Clerk
  • Accounts Officer
  • Analyst
  • Auditor
  • Payroll Officer
  • Bookkeeper
  • Economist
  • Finance Manager
  • Financial Broker
  • Financial Controller
  • Payroll Clerk

By becoming a qualified accountant, these roles and prospects can sustain you for a lifelong career. Along with this, there is plenty of opportunity within the accounting industry to progress your career and grow your skillset.

Accounting industry snapshot

The Accounting industry is considered to be in the ‘mature phase of its life cycle’, as the industry itself has experienced an extensive change over the last 10 years. This is a result of various factors – one of the largest motivated by technological advancements that are responsible for the shift in industry processes.

With the introduction of cloud-based accounting softwares such as Xero NZ, a vital change within the industry was required in order to adapt to these evolved processes.

To compete with these softwares, accounting firms and others in the accounting field have now become increasingly focused on providing higher quality services that were never required previously, along with the traditional accounting functions that have since become automated. In essence, the playing field has become level, and accountants must now consider other add-on services that can’t be provided by cloud-based services to avoid becoming lost in this technology.

As a result of this, client relationships have also become increasingly important within the accounting landscape. With technological advancement, it is easy for emotion to become lost amongst emails and other digital communication platforms. Particularly as the client is entrusting their accountant with their sensitive financial information, the accountant must actively make an effort to upkeep these relationships.

“The accounting industry has gone through massive changes due to advancements and improvements in technology, however accountants tend to rely more on technology at the cost of talking to clients over the phone or meeting with them face to face. To build client relationships you need to communicate with them via discussions and meetings. Communicating by email alone doesn’t build or strengthen client relationships.”

Roland Blazevic, Senior Accountant & Financial Planner at SFG Financial Services

Cloud-based software

Back then, these cloud-based softwares were considered to be a game changer. Now, programs such as Xero accounting software are the foundation of the accounting industry. Automation can help accountants to thrive as these refined softwares are able to offer progressively more essential management processes for every organisation. As a result of this, accountants now have more time to diversify their services and in turn, the industry has transformed to adjust to this changing face.

With these developments in accounting software, it is more crucial than ever that accountants and bookkeepers have the knowledge to effectively employ these programs in day-to-day processes, especially as it gives them more time to expand into further specialised and strategic processes.

Both Xero training and MYOB offer immediate access to your data – all you have to do it log into your cloud-based software. However, they are both very different software.


of accountants believe understanding technology is just as important to their job as understanding accountancy.

Xero vs MYOB


  • Is 100% browser-based
  • Connects to more add on software compared to any other accounting software package, which means you can add functionality that may not be available to Xero
  • Software does not have to be installed as it is accessed via internet browser
  • Xero Accounting Advanced Certificate
  • Ability to use foreign currency
  • Contains an ‘Asset Register’ which means you can track and depreciate assets and print an asset schedule


  • Is a hybrid model – the software is installed on your computer, but the data is stored in the cloud which means that is can be accessed both on and offline
  • Has telephone support
  • Has a over 140 reports which means that you don’t need add-on software to manipulate data
  • Point in time backups – you can restore a backup if something occurs and you need to restore a previous version of your work

Start a career in accounting

A career in accounting can provide you with a high demand career, that combines a high degree of job stability and plenty of room for growth.

short accounting course is a suitable option for those who are taking their first steps into the professional accounting landscape, those who are looking to re-enter the workforce after taking a career break or even for those who are looking to make a complete career change.

Accounting careers for the most part are very structured and dependable, with a consistent working routine that continues methodically depending on the timing of differing financial procedures.

If you are considering developing your skills in accounting, feel free to browse our Accounting courses currently on offer – from a refresher course to a diploma qualification, there is plenty of opportunity to build your accounting skillset and enter this fruitful industry.

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