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Accounts Officer


Description

Many individuals come to a point in their lives when in order to purchase an expensive item, such as a house or pay university tuition fees, they need to apply for some form of credit or a loan. The same applies to businesses that are about to launch and need extra funding. This is where an accounts officer is needed.

Accounts officers understand and analyze financial information about loan applications and business account conditions, and approve or reject credit applications. They develop credit structuring alternatives for large account transactions and assist credit officers in the management of these accounts. Accounts officers must ensure that those who want to borrow money are a safe financial risk to the organization. If a potential borrower is deemed unsuitable or unable to pay back a loan in due time by the credit officer, they will be rejected.

So how does an accounts officer determine the creditworthiness of a business applying for credit or a loan? They must spend their days obtaining information from banks, credit institutions, and employers, going over a company's credit history, seeing if they have paid back loans in the past. Accounts officers will interview applicants for business loans going over all these financial questions. After gathering and synthesizing all applicable financial information, they make a final decision regarding the loan. Once and if the loan is approved, the accounts officer must follow the client's financial status in order to protect the bank's best interest.

Accounts officers are also in charge of selling bank services and products, like retirement savings plans, securities and corporate credit cards. Those who work in small branches sometimes supervise banking procedures directly and process loan applications. However, the job has changed in recent years to focus more on the sale of financial products and services, such as investment funds. In larger branches, some officers may deal with personal accounts while other work in the commercial sector. Therefore, some may promote credit cards, collect outstanding debts, while others might work with higher level accounts.

Accounts officers must keep up to date with legislation and new governmental changes that affect the financial industry. Some accounts officers specialize in a specific commercial sector such as real estate, forestry, agriculture and finance. These days, it is helpful to have an accounts officer that has knowledge in a specialized area so that when it comes to assessing loan applications, they will have better judgment due to their knowledge of the industry. Also, this potentially lessens the risk of numerous unpaid loans for a financial institution.
 
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Sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2002, http://www.bls.gov/oes/2002/oes_nat.htm

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