Accountants and Financial Auditors

(NOC 1111)

in All Business, Finance, and Administration

Accountants plan, organize and administer accounting systems for individuals and organizations. Articling students in accounting firms are included in this group. Financial auditors examine and analyze the accounting and financial records of individuals and organizations to make sure they are accurate and comply with established accounting standards and procedures. Accountants and financial auditors work for auditing and accounting firms throughout the private and public sectors, or they may be self-employed.

Job Outlook

Good

Read more

  • Estimate Moderate growth employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 635 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate Low rate of unemployment in 2022

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

  • Estimate 3555 employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 9370 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “good”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is better than average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow significantly over the next few years, which will provide additional opportunities for employment. With a moderate percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to contribute somewhat to employment opportunities over the coming years. Accountants and Financial Auditors most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions.

The Halifax area provides more opportunities within this occupational category, with its strong government presence and a high number of national, regional, and local firms. Areas outside the city may have fewer opportunities, especially with larger firms, but that is likely balanced by a lower supply of experienced workers. Having a recognized credential, such as a CPA, is important to employers, as well as having strong interpersonal skills and prior work experience, particularly with large, international corporations. Non-designated accountants may have greater difficulty advancing their career into management roles. While hiring can be sporadic throughout the year and depend on budgets and major projects, opportunities do occur regularly and have been expanding. Public accounting is an area that seems to have trouble finding talent, particularly those skilled in assurance.

Hourly Pay

$20.67

Minimum

$33.33

Median

$57.69

Maximum

Annual Pay

$10,340

Minimum

$40,057

Median

$93,890

Maximum

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

Hourly Pay

$15.00

Minimum

$23.00

Median

$38.50

Maximum

Annual Pay

$6,754

Minimum

$36,515

Median

$70,271

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Accountants plan, organize and administer accounting systems for individuals and organizations. Articling students in accounting firms are included in this group. Financial auditors examine and analyze the accounting and financial records of individuals and organizations to make sure they are accurate and comply with established accounting standards and procedures. Accountants and financial auditors work for auditing and accounting firms throughout the private and public sectors, or they may be self-employed.

Job duties

Financial auditors:

  • Analyze accounting and financial records like journal and ledger entries, bank statements, inventories, expenses, and tax returns to confirm accuracy and compliance with accounting standards, procedures and internal controls.
  • Prepare detailed reports on audit findings and make recommendations to improve individual or organization's accounting and management practices.
  • Perform field audits of businesses to make sure they comply with provisions of the Income Tax Act, Canadian Business Corporations Act or other legal requirements.
  • May supervise other auditors or professionals in charge of accounting within client's organization.

Accountants:

  • Oversee accounting systems and prepare financial information for individuals, departments within organizations, businesses and other organizations.
  • Look at accounting records and prepare financial statements and reports.
  • Develop and maintain cost finding, reporting and internal control procedures.
  • Look at financial accounts and records and prepare income tax returns from accounting records.
  • Analyze financial statements and reports and provide financial, business and tax advice.
  • May act as a trustee in bankruptcy proceedings.
  • May supervise and train articling students, other accountants or administrative technicians.

Sample job titles

  • accountant
  • auditor
  • bankruptcy trustee
  • certified general accountant (CGA)
  • certified management accountant (CMA)
  • chartered accountant (CA)
  • chartered professional accountant (CPA)
  • financial control officer
  • income tax specialist
  • public accountant

Skills

  • You should have excellent organizational, analytical, and spoken and written communication skills. Good judgment, integrity, and persistence are important. You must have an interest in mathematics and be capable of detailed and precise work. Business skills are essential. Knowledge of business and financial software is required.

Job requirements

  • Chartered professional accountants need a university degree and completion of the CPA Professional Education Program.
  • Auditors need a university degree, completion of the CPA Professional Education Program and some experience as an accountant.
  • Auditors may require recognition by the Institute of Internal Auditors.
  • Auditors and accountants must hold a licence as a trustee in bankruptcy to act as a trustee in bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Licensing by the provincial or territorial governing body is usually required for accountants and auditors practicing public accounting.

Other considerations

  • Movement to auditing or accounting management positions is possible with experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

6,055

employed in 2016

85.2%

employed full-time

10.5%

self employed

69.0%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
31%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
44.6

median age

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

63,775

employed in 2016

78.4%

employed full-time

6.6%

self employed

73.4%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
26.6%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
47.9

median age

Where will I likely work?

51.6%

Halifax

$45,332 median annual income
16.7%

North Shore

$38,420 median annual income
12.3%

Cape Breton

$38,432 median annual income
10.3%

Southern

$37,198 median annual income
9.2%

Annapolis Valley

$34,821 median annual income

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

35.5%

Health care and social assistance

27.4%

Professional, scientific and technical services

9.1%

Public administration

4.5%

Finance and insurance

4.2%

Retail trade

What is the age of Employment?

25.0%

25-34

24.0%

45-54

22.0%

35-44

19.0%

55-64

5.0%

65+

4.0%

15-24

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

26.3%

45-54

22.6%

55-64

19.4%

35-44

16.7%

25-34

7.5%

65+

Top levels of education

37.9%

Bachelor

$51,138 median annual income
32.9%

College Diploma

$36,518 median annual income
7.3%

Trade Certification

$36,214 median annual income
6.4%

Diploma Above Bachelor

$59,292 median annual income
6.2%

High school

$36,812 median annual income

Compared to: All Business, Finance, and Administration

33.8%

College Diploma

$36,304 median annual income
23.8%

High school

$32,903 median annual income
22.8%

Bachelor

$41,755 median annual income
5.8%

Trade Certification

$34,807 median annual income
4.9%

Less than high school

$23,174 median annual income

Education & training

Accounting

University Program

These programs prepare students to practice the profession of accounting and to perform related business functions. They include courses in accounting principles and theory, financial accounting, managerial accounting, cost accounting, budget control, tax accounting, legal aspects of accounting, auditing, reporting procedures, statement analysis, planning and consulting, business information systems, accounting research methods, professional standards and ethics, and applications to specific for-profit, public, and non-profit organizations.

Institutions providing this program

CPA Atlantic School of Business Association

Halifax, NS

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

Nova Scotia Community College

Various, NS

Business/Commerce

College, Trades, or University Program

These programs focus on the general study of business, including the processes of interchanging goods and services (buying, selling and producing), business organization, and accounting as used in profit-making and non-profit public and private institutions and agencies. They prepare students to apply business principles and techniques in various occupational settings.

Institutions providing this program

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Finance

College or University Program

These programs prepare students to plan, manage, and analyse the financial and monetary aspects and performance of business enterprises, banking institutions, or other organizations. They include courses in principles of accounting, financial instruments, capital planning, funds acquisition, asset and debt management, budgeting, financial analysis, and investments and portfolio management.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

Nova Scotia Community College

Various, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

Chartered Professional Accountant

Right to Title: This job is regulated in Nova Scotia. The job title is protected, and you may not use it without a professional designation. Professional designation shows that the holder has met provincial standards for the job. Employers may require professional designation, but professional designation is not necessary to do this work.

Regulating body:
Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia
Halifax, NS
Public Accountants

Right to Title and Practice: This job is regulated. The job title is protected, and you may not use it without a professional licence. A licence shows that the holder has met provincial requirements and is required to legally do this work.

Regulating body:
Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia
Halifax, NS

Contacts

Institute of Internal Auditors Canada - Maritime Chapter
Nova Scotia, Canada
CPA Atlantic School of Business
Halifax, NS

Additional resources