An apparel industry accountant is a trusted financial advisor and business partner who provides industry-specific solutions to apparel companies. They have a keen understanding of their industry by keeping up to date on emerging market trends and issues. Their business insights and personal desires will help them understand what apparel companies need to accomplish to remain profitable and competitive, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
What Do They Do Every Day?
Apparel industry accountants perform regular closing activities related to journal entries, accrual accounting, depreciation schedules and prepaid amortizations. They support the full cycle general ledger process by preparing monthly, quarterly and annual financial statements. They may manage various monthly and quarterly sales tax and international revenue processing. Apparel industry accountants work with external auditors and internal CPAs to ensure timely and accurate tax filing, profit reporting, payroll reviews and cost accounting.
They may establish and maintain accounting policies and documentation procedures across the organization. Apparel industry accountants perform advanced and specialized accounting assignments that involve complex and confidential industry data. The accounting industry is very eclectic and competitive, so apparel industry accountants use their internal insights to help manage sensitive and narrow profit margins. Their strong consulting, problem-solving and conceptual skills will help them work with unorthodox designers.
What Are the Expected Skills and Abilities?
Apparel industry accountants will need to have a Bachelor of Science (BS) in accounting or finance. Almost all apparel companies that sell, source, broker and manufacture clothing will want accountants who have a specialized master’s degree and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designation. These same job candidates will need strong knowledge of the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and the International Accounting Standards (IAS).
Apparel industry accountants should have hands-on expertise and working knowledge of common enterprise software like SAP and Oracle. They must have the ability to write reports, procedural manuals and business correspondence. They must be able to effectively present information and respond to questions from supervisors, customers and outside experts. They must have the ability to perform highly complex statistical analysis and mathematical equations.
The Apparel Industry
The apparel industry is driven by design innovation, ingenious products, intense competition, trademark personalities and well-kept secrets. Apparel industry accountants aren’t average CPAs to deal with regular business and financial transactions. Instead, they deal with narrow profit margins, highly sensitive data and customized products that constantly change. Apparel industry accountants will deal with sales, customers, purchases, inventory and manufacturers.
Apparel industry accountants rely on masterfully integrated software suites that offer the latest technology, scalable databases, cloud architecture and open-source API. Apparel industry accountants must often travel between design offices, customer locations and production facilities, so they are always on-the-go. They tend to favor software solutions that are accessible through the Cloud on any device. Independent entrepreneurs who cannot afford these expensive solutions usually rely on free project management software programs.
Apparel industry accountants are business advisory professionals who help companies with the right financial systems and strategies to improve overall performance.