An accounts receivable clerk accepts payments and pays invoices on behalf of a company, as well as performing minor bookkeeping duties. A high school diploma is required for becoming an accounts receivable clerk, and some companies prefer to hire clerks with undergraduate college degrees. A clerk must have strong administrative and customer service skills, which can be learned through a variety of training courses or working in other junior administrative positions.
Accounting clerks work for municipal governments, small businesses, and large corporations, and the tasks they perform differ from one employer to the next. A clerk at a small firm may only process a few transactions per day, and many of the people who work in these positions are entry-level or part-time employees. Someone wishing to work as an accounts receivable clerk for a large corporation, on the other hand, may need to complete an undergraduate degree program in accounting, finance, or a related field. Furthermore, some companies only hire people who have passed accountant licensing exams administered regulatory agencies or accounting industry associations.
Clerks must have excellent customer service skills because they interact with clients and vendors on a daily basis. As a result, many employers prefer to hire clerks with prior experience working in retail, banking, or other occupations that require strong customer service skills. Additionally, clerks are frequently required to send communications and invoices to clients, which necessitates good typing skills as well as the ability to use word processing software and email systems for someone wishing to work as an accounts receivable clerk. Some people enroll in short-term community college courses to learn how to use common word processing software and communications equipment. Others learn about these systems through on-the-job training while working in other office settings.
Bookkeeping errors can be costly because vendors who do not receive payments may cancel orders, resulting in service interruptions. Some employers require clerk candidates to pass practical examinations that put their accounting and data entry skills to the test. These tests may require the use of calculators or accounting software, and in many cases, a candidate must achieve a certain score to be considered for an open position. As a result, people who do not have an accounting degree may enroll in college courses where they are taught accounting techniques and shown how to use calculators and other equipment efficiently.