How to become an accountant in Germany

accountant germanyThe profession of accountant in Germany is very interesting and responsible, and most importantly, the chances of employment look very good, because every company in Germany must have an accountant. In addition, working as an accountant in Germany isn't so complicated, because an accountant in Germany is only responsible for calculating the balance sheet at the company and should not be understood by law.

Many young people ask how to get such a profession. Unfortunately, the profession of accountant in Germany cannot be obtained within the framework of classical university education either at the Fachhochschule (a specialized higher education institution such as a technical school) or also at the Berufsschule (an educational institution such as a vocational school). The way to the profession of accountant in Germany is not easy, because this profession is not part of one profession, but provides different opportunities for how a person can become an accountant in Germany.

  • The first opportunity to become an accountant in Germany is that you should first start the german Ausbildung. After some time you get the opportunity to pass the exam in the Chamber of Commerce (dt. IHK Prüfung). After passing this exam, you receive the status of "Geprüfter Bilanzbuchhalter". But you can also pass this exam without having to make the german Ausbildung as a trade sprecialist (dt. Kaufmann), but with, for example, a university degree in economics and relevant work experience. 
  • The second opportunity to become an "accountant" is to complete a short course for "Bilanzbuchhalter" (balance accountant, as in Germany is called the profession of ordinary accountant), which can last from 6 to 12 months and can be part-time and full-time. Such courses cost an average of 2,000 euros. After the graduation, you will receive a certificate of education as an accountant and can take the IHK Prüfung (the exam of german Chamber of Commerce). The basis of the IHK Prüfung or state exam for accountant is the Ausbildung as a specialist in trade (dt. Kaufmann) or education as the economist at the University or Fachhochschhule. For example, the Ausbildung of Einzelhandelskaufmann (specialist in retail) creates a good basis to become later a Bilanzbuchhaltung (balance sheet accounting). Also for those who want to become an accountant, exists another good possibility to do the Ausbildung of Bürokaufmann (office manager). It ist very suitable, as in the process of this Ausbildung you will be able to gain the necessary knowledge in the field of accounting. To do this, you need to warn your employer from the beginning of Ausbildung that you want to become an accountant, and then he will simply load you with work in this field.
  • The third opportunity to become an "accountant" is to complete a special IHK Ausbildung for an accountant at the German Chamber of Commerce. This Ausbildung can be started provided that you have 3 years of experience and 1.5 of them in the field of accounting.
  • The fourth opportunity to become an "accountant" in Germany is to obtain any higher education at the university or Fachhochschule in business administration (Betriebswirtschaftslehre) or national economics (Volkswirtschaftslehre) with or without a bias in the field of Rechnungswesen (report and reporting) then pass the IHK exam..