My Life as a Virtual Accountant

My Life as a Virtual Accountant

Accountant stereotypes are a dime a dozen — boring, dull, desk ridden, passive, and the list goes on. These stereotypes make many believe they know what a typical day of an accountant is like — but how does that change when you put “virtual” in front of the word “accountant”?

A virtual accountant is an accountant that works for a distributed model company, meaning their office is on their computer screen and their computer can go almost anywhere. I have worked as a virtual accountant for Summit CPA Group for over a year, and my days are nothing like they were when I worked for a brick and mortar company. For example, I am writing this article in front of a waterfall in South Carolina while my hometown is back in Michigan.

Waterfall from Spartanburg, SC

Just as a virtual accountant’s day can be much different from that of a brick and mortar accountant, the day-to-day activities of virtual accountants vary a great deal from one another as well. It’s due to the flexibility a virtual workspace provides — flexibility in scheduling work hours, flexibility in work location, and flexibility on how you use the extra hours of commute time you save each week. Some virtual accountants use their flexibility to travel around the country, others use it to live a healthier lifestyle, while others use it to spend more time with their families. When becoming a part of a virtual workplace you become less defined by your job title and more defined by your personal interests.

My life has changed dramatically for the better since joining a distributed team. The flexibility that comes with a virtual position has allowed me to be a much more involved and present parent in my six-year-old daughter’s life. This has become the biggest perk — more than the salary, and more than the benefits. A typical day includes me getting my daughter on and off the bus each day, and even scheduling time to volunteer at many of my daughter’s school functions. Some of these functions include bake sales, class parties, field trips, and the guest reader program.

Vacationing and traveling have become increasingly easier during my employment with a distributed company. As mentioned above, I am writing this blog entry in front of a waterfall. This would have never been possible at any of my previous jobs. Traveling is now more achievable because I can take my work with me wherever I go — all I need is my laptop and a hotspot. However, this does not mean my entire vacation needs to be consumed with work. The flexibility offered allows me to check in with work whenever I feel the need, or if it is necessary to complete a task that could not be pushed off until later. This reduces stress on myself and my coworkers while allowing me to share new cultural experiences with my daughter — experiences and memories we will remember for the rest of our lives.

My overall time and availability have been opened. I can work late into the evening or on weekends if necessary. The typical 9–5 work schedule is not necessarily required. The reduction of stress this provides is invaluable to me.

Working virtually has also allowed me to take steps to further my career. I began studying for the CPA exams at the beginning of 2018. These exams are tough and only 30% of test takers pass all four tests on their first attempt. The hours put into preparing for these tests are immense. Working virtually provides the flexibility for this type of studying to be possible. Without a daily commute, I have crucial hours added back to my day, hours I can use for studying and preparation.

Working virtually has also given me the opportunity to rescue three German Shepherd dogs. The biggest concerns many pet owners have before getting a pet is whether they will be home enough for the pet. Working from home eliminates that fear. All three of my dogs have come from troubled homes, and it involves a lot of time and work to get them adjusted to a new home. Working virtually allows me to gain their trust through constant presence and an established routine. Working virtually at home also allows me to provide them with frequent outside breaks, and for me to give them constant direction throughout the day. Bettering the lives of these dogs has been a fulfilling experience I would not have been able to have if it was not for my virtual position.
 Working virtually has opened doors to me that I never knew were available. The opportunities to be a career woman, a mother, and enjoy my life to the fullest are some of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

Source: Medium:Remote Working
My Life as a Virtual Accountant

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