What Are Typical Accounting Department Functions?

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Accounting department duties vary from one firm to the next, but generally include tracking income and expenditures, attending to payrolls, reporting and setting financial controls. Accounting departments help to manage and monitor outgoing monetary expenses by making payments and lowering the price of bills to be paid. They regulate and watch income by tracking sales and processing incoming payments and ensure that all employees are paid according to salaries listed on the company payroll.

Within accounting departments, these responsibilities are shared among a group of employees with backgrounds and expertise in finance. Regardless of size, most firms have accounting departments with accounts payable and accounts receivable capacities. Employees tasked with overseeing accounts payable manage and oversee outgoing funds, or company expenses. They also play critical roles in maintaining good relationships with clients by ensuring they are paid on time: those tasked with accounts receivable lend a helping hand by creating and tracking invoices as they come in. Payroll management and generating financial statements are also critical department functions; they ensure employees are paid and gather critical data to set budgets and goals. Lastly, controls set up proper procedures to thwart theft and ensure smooth accounting processes.