Accountant salary

An Accountant salary is primarily based on a combination of breadth of experience, personal skills and qualifications. However, the industry and size of the company can also have an impact on remuneration. As technology increasingly automates many aspects of the accounting process, familiarity with the latest software and data management techniques will play a role to determine an appropriate Accountant salary that a candidate can expect to earn.

Percentiles of an Accountant salary

In the Robert Half Salary Guide, salaries are broken down by percentiles. This allows you to see how different skills, experience and qualifications – along with different roles, can shape an Accountant salary.

25th percentile

An Accountant in this percentile is typically less experienced, and may be a recent graduate with a tertiary qualification such as a Bachelor of Commerce, Business or Economics. Accountants in this salary percentile may be assigned basic responsibilities such as account reconciliations, managing the fixed assets register, and contributing to regular reports under the supervision of a department head. Work opportunities may be found in smaller, less complex organisations, or in departments of larger organisations where tasks will be undertaken as part of a broader team.

50th percentile

In this Accountant salary percentile, candidates will have acquired a few years of experience and be well-versed in the basic functions of accounting. The role itself is likely to be of average complexity, and may include general ledger reconciliations, preparing month-end reports, assisting in the preparation of statutory financial accounts and supervising less experienced members of the finance team. This salary percentile may be ideally suited to accountants who have recently qualified as a Chartered Accountant (CA) or Certified Practising Accountant (CPA).

75th percentile

In this percentile, an Accountant is expected to have more than typical experience backed by a strong skill set including forecasting and budgeting, plus the ability to communicate complex accounting concepts to management and company executives. Holding either the CA or CPA certification is essential to fit this Accountant salary range as the role will be complex, often involving collaboration with external auditors as well as ensuring the company is meeting its statutory obligations. An awareness of how ongoing changes in technology can be used to streamline the accounting function is essential. This salary band may also apply in industries where there is reasonable level of competition between employers for suitably qualified accounting talent.

95th percentile

This Accountant salary percentile is exclusive to highly tenured accountants with a vast level of experience, qualifications and skills that are directly relevant to the role or industry. Accountants will be responsible for highly complex tasks, that are more likely to be more strategic in nature, rather than hands-on. Along with a proven skill set and a high level of expertise, candidates in this salary percentile are expected to be able to add real value by advising management on the financial impact of new initiatives or projects, thereby helping the organisation enjoy a competitive edge.

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