Hilbert College Global Online Blog

Accounting Clerk: Salary and Job Description

Written by: Hilbert College   •  Mar 18, 2024
An accounting clerk and an accountant look over documents standing in an office.

Accounting Clerk: Salary and Job Description

Accounting clerks implement accounting procedures to maintain the accuracy of an organization’s financial operations. They work in a variety of environments across different sectors. An accounting clerk’s salary can be competitive, and job opportunities are expected to be promising over the next 10 years.

Individuals who are interested in starting on the path to a career in accounting can benefit from learning what the job of an accounting clerk entails, its educational requirements and how to develop the skills necessary to succeed in the role.

What Does an Accounting Clerk Do?

An accounting clerk performs administrative tasks as part of a company’s accounting team. Depending on the industry they work in, their daily duties can range from filing financial records to recording financial transactions.

Commonly performed tasks of accounting clerks include:

  • Collecting and managing invoices
  • Managing business transaction records
  • Overseeing refunds
  • Processing bills
  • Collecting past-due payments

Most accounting clerks work during regular business hours; however, freelance accounting clerks work contracted hours, which might include shift work.

Where Do Accounting Clerks Work?

Accounting clerks work in office settings within often fast-paced accounting departments. They must be able to perform well under pressure, sometimes adhering to tight deadlines, and handle several tasks simultaneously. They also may be required to deliver presentations or perform tasks at multiple locations.

In addition to general accounting departments, accounting clerks work in accounts payable, external or internal auditing, billing and tax departments.

Accounting Clerk Educational and Skill Requirements

Accounting clerks must have a high school diploma—or its equivalent—at a minimum. However, many companies prefer candidates with at least a certificate in accounting or an associate degree.

While having a higher-level degree may not be a requirement for most entry-level positions, some accounting clerks hold a bachelor’s degree in accounting, which can qualify them for a higher salary potential and greater opportunities for advancement. 

A bachelor’s degree in accounting program is designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of financial accounting, business law, accounting principles and taxation. While earning a degree in accounting, students develop hard skills in areas such as deductive reasoning, analysis, financial reporting, and regulatory and policy compliance. They also build the following soft skills that are needed to work as part of an accounting team.

Detail-Oriented Mindset

Accounting clerks are responsible for specialized tasks that involve managing the budgets and finances of large companies. A misplaced decimal or mistyped digit can lead to devastating consequences. For this reason, accounting clerks should possess strong typing skills and the ability to spot irregularities and errors quickly.

Interpersonal Skills

Although some accounting clerks work alone, most work with others. Team members collaborate on budget presentations, financial spreadsheets and proposals. This makes organization, teamwork and communication skills among the most important for accounting clerks.

Time Management Skills

Time management skills are necessary for accounting clerks to be able to perform pressing daily tasks. Working within a specified time frame requires them to prioritize tasks, manage projects and multitask without missing deadlines.

Critical Thinking Skills

The ability to make rational and well-thought-out decisions quickly is key for accounting clerks. They must also be able to brainstorm with other accounting clerks to create solutions that correct errors. To demonstrate their critical thinking skills, accounting clerks should feel confident in their ability to analyze and process information efficiently. 

Accounting Clerk Salary and Job Outlook

Accounting clerks are compensated based on their industry, specialty and location. Accounting clerks had a median annual salary of $45,860 as of May 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The top 10% of earners made over $65,000 annually. 

Accounting clerks entering the finance or insurance industry can expect to earn more on average than those working in wholesale, retail, construction or professional services, according to the BLS.

Despite a slight decline in growth, the job outlook for accounting clerks is promising. The BLS reports that accounting clerks can expect approximately 183,900 open positions to be available each year until 2032.

The shift in employment opportunities is partly due to people leaving the field. Additionally, technological advances are providing organizations with many ways to automate accounting tasks, reducing the need for manual accounting clerks. As a result, accounting clerks entering the industry are expected to take on more analytical roles.

Embark on a Career in Accounting

Hilbert College Global offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accounting degree program that guides individuals on the path to a career in accounting.

This flexible program is career focused and community driven, providing a fully interactive experience for students while they are learning from home. The courses in the program cover critical concepts like accounting ethics and auditing methods while teaching soft skills like critical thinking and problem-solving.

Discover how Hilbert College can help you succeed as an accounting clerk.

Recommended Readings:

Accounting Math: What Skills Do You Need to Be an Accountant?

Green Accounting and Sustainability Reporting

How to Become a Financial Analyst


Indeed, “What Does an Accounting Clerk Do?”

Indeed, Accounting Clerk Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Spherion, How to Become an Accounting Clerk

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks

ZipRecruiter, “What Is an Account Clerk and How to Become One”

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