Catch-Up Day- A Day in the Life of an Accountant

By PRETTY BOOKS ON November 12, 2020
DAY IN THE LIFE is a snapshot of the life of an accountant, taken one day at a time. If you ask an accountant what they do, they will probably tell you “it depends on the day.” Because an accountant’s scope of responsibilities is vast and integrated into the decision making and operations of a business, it frequently shifts depending on the time of month, day of the year, and the needs of their clients. While you can’t pinpoint a typical day for an accountant, there are some days that pay out similarly throughout the year.

Today is Catch-Up Day. These are days where the high tide of work accountants usually face is out, leaving them with time to clean up the beach and finish projects they are usually too busy to take care of. Accountants use this time to file paperwork, catch up on their to-do lists, research, and regroup with their team without the threat of a looming deadline.

9:00 AM: Arrive at the office. Chit chat with one of my coworkers while we make coffee. It’s catch-up day for both of us. There’s nothing planned but tying up loose ends and a quick meeting with my senior accountant to go over some questions.

9:10 AM: Head to my desk and open my email. I answer one, forward another. Nothing too much going on, so I look at my agenda for today. First up is double-checking some files.

9:15 AM: I pull up my month-end close folder. In the wild tsunami of month-end close, ran out of time to organize my client folders. All the documents were there, but I needed to rearrange them into sub folders. Now that the weather is calm and the flood has dried up, I can move these around. Easy peasy.

9:48 AM: Wow, there really are a lot of files in here. I didn’t realize how many I actually go through during a close. ****

10:25 AM: Finish polishing my schedules and documents. Now it’s time to prepare for a one-on-one with my senior accountant. In the first two weeks of the month, there isn’t enough time to regroup with her to go over my work, ask questions, and receive feedback. Today I actually have time to have a full conversation with her. I pull up a questionnaire I filled out yesterday and start to go through it to make sure I covered everything I’d like feedback on.

10:26 AM:

Month-end close questions ✅

Context for those questions so she knows what I’m talking about ✅

Goals for next month ✅

Feedback and questions about improving my work in the future ✅

10:55 AM: Top off my coffee with some oat milk, cinnamon, and a little sugar. My coworker gave me her recipe for a “quick latte” a few weeks ago, but I only had time to try it today. It’s nice to have time to do things on my terms. I head into the conference room to meet with my senior.

12:00 PM: Wow, what a great meeting. We have lots of time to sit down and catch up. I thank my senior for her mentorship and head back to my desk. I got a lot of valuable feedback I can implement into my work this coming month.

12:05 PM: Start researching some tax laws. A client is thinking about selling in another state, so I’m researching whether or not they have to pay taxes there.

1:05 PM: They do.

1:06 PM: Lunch time! It’s sunny and beautiful out. I’m going to take a quick walk during my break.

1:37 PM: Start working on a reconstruction project for a new client. They haven’t done their accounting for YEARS. This is going to be so much fun!

2:37 PM: Made it to 2018 on this client’s clean up! So close to 2020!

3:10 PM: Done. I have just enough time to get my notes together and do a quick refresh before my meeting with a teammate. We’re working on a project together and really just want to put our heads together and brainstorm some ideas. I’ll start by reading the agenda she gave me yesterday.

3:30 PM: Meeting time! I need to remember to ask her about the timeline for another client while we’re together.

4:30 PM: Finish up the day with some bookkeeping work.

5:00 PM: Wow, time to go home already? Today went by fast! I love a good catch-up day after the hectic month-end close.

5:30 PM: Get home and put on my favorite show. Today was exhausting in that way that easy days are. I am glad to have a catch up day after two weeks of stress, but I’m glad that every day isn’t this easy. I’m starting to miss a challenge.

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The information provided in this post is for general informational and educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. Consult your financial, business, or tax advisor with respect to matters referenced in this post. Pretty Books assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon this information.
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