What are the responsibilities of an accounting technician? Although not a member of a professional order, unlike Certified Professional Accountants (CPA), accounting technicians are still subject to a number of responsibilities. Not taking them into account or being negligent can have sometimes serious consequences.
Beware of the appearance of fraud
“When we talk about jobs in accounting, regardless of the position, it involves being conscientious and applied,” says Julien Archambault, professor and coordinator for the Department of Management Science and Technology at the Cégep du Vieux-Montréal. “It’s the same for an accounting technician.” For example, “an accounting technician who makes repeated mistakes or several types of blunder could cause a false financial picture for the company, mistakes that could be considered fraud,” explains the professor.
Also, even though the accounting technician profession is not regulated, the fact remains that depending on the workplace, there may be rules or standards that apply. Among other things, it’s not uncommon for accounting technicians employed in large firms – just like the rest of the employees, regardless of their department – to have to respect a code of ethics set up by the employer. Although this practice is not a standard applicable to all accounting technicians, it is nevertheless widespread. In addition, non-compliance with this type of internal rule can lead to disciplinary measures up to and including termination of the offending person.
Limited level of responsibilities
Thus, although some responsibilities of an accounting technician can seem to have more serious consequences, the body of all of them remains limited. As Mr. Archambault indicates, “The accounting technician is made to work in a team.” Because of this, certain tasks entrusted to him are often subject to approval by a CPA or superior. In addition, a number of accounting actions area are reserved solely for Certified Professional Accountants, which reduces the risk of errors that could be attributed to them.
Nevertheless, like for all their colleagues in the accounting field, rigour and thoroughness remain essential in performing the work of an accounting technician.