he power of the spreadsheet sometimes escapes small business owners. It is understandable. Modern accounting can be perplexing even for people with unusually high intelligence and drive to succeed. The principles of basic accounting, however, are not all that difficult to understand provided enough time is taken to practice the art of getting all the right numbers into all the right accounts. Understanding which accounts do what also helps quite a bit.
While Excel and other spreadsheet software can’t help with this kind of knowledge directly, it can perform many of the tasks required for double-entry accounting, for example, if it is set up properly and every transaction is recorded in the right place. If you plan to use spreadsheet software for your accounts, here are some things to consider.
The key thing to remember is office programs like Excel were designed to support functions like preparing balance sheets and other necessary financial documents. There is a high likelihood you will find both templates and working documents that help you perform all the basics of small business accounting without having to re-invent the wheel. Start by looking for tutorials, as they will often have a long list of resources available to anyone with compatible versions of office software like Excel.
Functions vs. Scripting
All spreadsheets have both basic and advanced formula functions. These are the automatic arithmetic and calculation shorthand features most people who have used spreadsheets are familiar with. What many people likely haven’t used as much are the scripting languages built in to spreadsheets like Excel.
A scripting language allows a developer to embed business logic into their documents, allowing the calculation and display engines to be updated based on arbitrary conditions outside the document itself. This is a key area of knowledge for anyone interested in budgeting in particular, as it allows developers to establish thresholds and trigger logic based on them.
Excel in particular ships with a wide variety of standardized document types, including cash-flow, profit and loss and various kinds of budgets from personal to business and many types in between. These work alongside the basic charting functions which allow a rudimentary type of reporting based on both raw data and calculated data on each document type.
A comprehensive reference would be more than a little daunting, even for an advanced user, but it is quite possible for a beginner in Excel and a novice accountant to be up to speed on the software quite rapidly, and then work methodically to make progress from there.
The application has already generated plenty attention from business owners with an interest in the services provided. One reason may be the cloud solution that BlackLine provides, currently available in more than a hundred countries. This means data can be addressed by any subsidiary in almost any country and all that’s needed is a device and an internet connection. For this reason, companies with a worldwide reach and multiple subsidiaries can reap the most benefits from using BlackLine.
If you are an accountant you may be wondering what the benefits of working for the Big Four are. There are many reasons to consider working for either Deloitte, EY, KPMG, or PwC. Here is a list of the top five as cited by staff who actually work there
Most employees who work for one of the Big Four work a lot of hours and this is recognized and appreciated by the management. In order to keep the staff from burnout, especially during the busy tax season, an average of five weeks fo vacation time is given to accountants to keep them well rested. This is a huge perk and is well above the national average of vacation time given to entry-level corporate workers.
Remote Work Opportunities
Working remotely is coming into more prominence in the 21st century and the Big Four are shifting to meet this trend. They offer flexible hours in which their accountants can work from home in order to meet their obligations. This is appreciated greatly by the staff, especially by those who have previous family commitments.
Casual Dress Policy
Not having to wear a suit and tie every day is an important perk for those accountants working for the Big Four. The management emphasizes that they want people to be comfortable when they are putting in their long day at work. Having more relaxed standards of dress helps ease the stress of accountants for these firms.
When saving for retirement all accountants know the benefits of compound interest. It doesn’t take a math whiz to realize that when the company is going to give you free money to match all of your contributions to your retirement account then you can reach your retirement goals a lot faster. This is a true benefit that helps the employees of Big Four firms to build real wealth that they will depend on for a lifetime.
Maternity and Paternity Leave
Having children is a huge milestone in your life and Big Four firms understand the need for bonding and family time that comes when there is a new addition to the family. They offer some of the most generous maternity and paternity leave plans in the country.
With these five benefits, working for a Big Four company is an enticing way to increase your benefits and career satisfaction at the same time.
About Kewho Min
Kewho Min is a diligent, knowledgable and highly motivated professional who is determined to challenge the status quo of the accounting industry. Kewho has shown his adept skill in accounting through his successful management of billion dollar inter-company balances and integration of new acquisitions of up to $3 billion in domestic and international net assets. Kewho Min has also proven his financial expertise by restructuring multi-billion dollar balances without affecting potential tax exposure or impact.
Throughout Kewho Min’s storied career, he has prepared and reviewed several U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) documents and consolidated overall financial statements for numerous multinational corporations and investment funds. Prior to his current position, Kewho served as Corporate Controller and Vice President of Jefferies Group, LLC in Los Angeles, California. Before that, he was the vice president of Global Consolidations and General Ledger at NASDAQ (National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations), the second-largest exchange in the world by market capitalization, for nearly five years.
The only other exchange platform that is bigger than NASDAQ is the New York Stock Exchange. The platform known as NASDAQ is owned by Nasdaq, Inc., which also owns the OMX stock market network and several other US stock and options exchanges. As the Vice President of GL and Consolidation Kewho Min managed eight accounting professionals and was responsible for the preparation and overall consolidation of the Income Statement, Balance Sheet, Cash Flows and Statement of Shareholders’ Equity on a monthly basis. Kewho Min’s executive role involved reviewing the Company’s 10-K and 10-Q as well as other compliance related submissions. Furthermore, Kewho assisted in the preparation and review of the Company’s 10-K and 10-Q as well as other compliance related submissions. One of Kewho’s major contributions in this role was leading the successful re-engineering of the monthly closing process, reducing the close period down from 20 days to 6 days. Always paying attention to detail, Kewho created a comprehensive model to streamline and calculate diluted share count on a quarterly basis. He also integrated new acquisitions ranging from $10 million to $3 billion in net assets, both domestic and international, while ensuring compliance and ease for reporting in US GAAP and international compliance.
Prior to his role at NASDAQ, Kewho Min served as a Vice President in Accounting and Finance at ICON Investments, a New York City-based alternative investment firm that provides innovative investment solutions to individual and institutional investors. As a Vice President, Kewho managed four accounting professionals and was responsible for the overall consolidation of the Income Statement, Balance Sheet, Cash Flows and Statement of Shareholders’ Equity for Corporate group as well as seven investment funds along with the applicable SEC filings. Ensured that Broker Dealer filings were done in accordance with various regulations.
At ICON, Kewho demonstrated leadership ability by re-engineering the quarterly closing process, ensuring that the 10-K and 10-Q for the seven investment funds were completed on a timely basis. He also redrafted each of the quarterly and annual filing for the 7 investment leasing funds to ensure that they were in compliance with USGAAP disclosure requirements. Additionally, Kewho Min worked closely with senior management and the acquisition team in determining the best utilization of the capital resources collected from the investors for the managed funds. Together with the company’s CFO, Kewho aggressively streamlined the procurement process to maximize the services provided by ICON’s vendors while minimizing the company’s cost exposure.
BACKGROUND ABOUT KEWHO MIN:
Kewho Min’s career trajectory wasn’t always so straightforward; as a student at Montclair State University back in January 1993, he had hardly narrowed his focus down past business administration. It wasn’t until January 1995 when he took his first accounting class with an incredible professor that he felt a spark of interest– and this spark would end up guiding the course of his career.
Kewho Min was recruited by the major public accounting firms in college, and his first position out of college was as an Associate/Auditor at Arthur Andersen, LLP. Over the next four years he worked his way up to higher-level positions at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, The New York Times Company, and Take 2 Interactive Software.
By the time he was hired as an Associate Manager of Financial Reporting at Nielsen, Kewho had honed his expertise in external reporting and consolidation.
In his third year at Nielsen Kewho was offered a position overseas in Haarlem, the Netherlands, which he gladly accepted. Kewho served as the lead with the international consolidation business groups to ensure consistency and accuracy in financial reporting. Furthermore, he was an integral member of the conversion of the Dutch GAAP Financial Statements to US GAAP and IFRS in preparation for a potential US and European listing. In 2006, Nielsen was acquired by a consortium of private equity firms, which required him to the preparer of the guarantor / non guarantor financial statements. Following this, Kewho joined the team at ICON Investments as Vice President of Finance and reported directly to the CFO.
At ICON Investments Kewho took on both proactive and retroactive roles. One of his major retroactive accomplishments was overhauling seven active funds that had been in arrears with SEC for nearly two years. Kewho analyzed the funds, identified their issues, and revised all problems so that within just one year both funds were made current filers. He also served as the primary technical accountant of the firm, responsible for the accounting of derivative and hedges, leases and many other technical accounting concepts.
Kewho Min continues to have an active career in finance and accounting. His managerial skills and interdepartmental tact make him an exceptional and trusted professional in the field.
CONTACT KEWHO MIN:
Kewho Min is an executive-level accountant who currently serves as the director of global accounting at Walmart. If you are interested in contacting Kewho, please fill out the form below and he will reach out to you as soon as possible.