A Senior Cost Accountant is an experienced professional responsible for managing an organization’s financial resources and for evaluating its cost structure. They are responsible for ensuring the accuracy and integrity of financial data used in company decisions and in the execution of cost controls. As part of a team of cost-oriented professionals, senior cost accountants are tasked with monitoring, analyzing and reporting on the costs associated with a wide range of projects and operations.
The average salary of a Senior Cost Accountant varies depending on experience, education and location. The average annual salary reported in 2019 by PayScale was $62,052, with an average hourly wage of $23.88.
An experienced Senior Cost Accountant may earn an additional 5-10% for their experience. Some employers offer further incentives in the form of performance bonuses and stock options.
Individuals interested in a career as a Senior Cost Accountant should pursue a college degree in accounting, finance, economics, or business administration. Successful applicants should demonstrate strong problem-solving skills and be able to think critically and analytically. They also need strong communication and interpersonal skills to effectively interact with colleagues, vendors and clients.
The job outlook for cost accountants is positive. Companies across a variety of industries are in need of cost accountants who can accurately identify and control internal costs, effectively negotiate with external vendors and understand industry-specific financial regulations. Senior Cost Accountants should have no problem finding a job in a professional, secure work environment.
Senior Cost Accountant Salary
A senior cost accountant is an experienced professional responsible for effectively analyzing the cost of production and services. They are responsible for overseeing the daily operations of cost accounting, managing budgets and forecasting financial performance in order to optimize profits and reduce expenses.
A senior cost accountant typically earns an average salary ranging from about $68,000 to over $96,000 per year. Experience, industry, location and employer all have an effect on an individual’s salary.
The average salary for a senior cost accountant in the United States is around $80,000 per year. This is slightly higher than the average salary of a cost accountant, which is around $60,000 annually.
Pay by Industry
The industry that a senior cost accountant works in can play a significant role in determining the overall salary they earn. Generally, those employed in the Manufacturing industry can expect to earn a higher salary than those in the Financial Services industry.
- Manufacturing: Around $85,000 per year
- Medical and Health Care: About $81,000 annually
- Financial Services: Approximately $76,000 annually
Pay by Location
Location can also affect the salary of a senior cost accountant. Generally, those located in larger cities such as New York or Los Angeles will earn more than those in smaller cities such as Fargo or Omaha.
- New York, NY: Approximately $87,000 annually
- Los Angeles, CA: Around $86,000 per year
- Chicago, IL: About $81,000 per year
- Houston, TX: Approximately $78,000 per year
- Fargo, ND: Around $71,000 annually
A senior cost accountant typically earns an average salary ranging from around $68,000 to over $96,000. These salaries depend on the experience, industry, location and employer of the individual. With the right education and experience, a senior cost accountant can find great success and opportunity within the profession.
What qualifications do you need to become a senior cost accountant?
To become a senior cost accountant, you typically need at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Additionally, it’s often beneficial to have a few years of experience in cost accounting. In order to advance to higher-level positions, you may also need to obtain certifications like a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or a Certified Management Accountant (CMA). Depending on the organization, you may also need to complete more advanced industry-specific certifications or training.
What kind of experience is necessary to be a senior cost accountant?
Senior cost accountants are generally expected to have at least five years of experience in financial accounting and cost analysis. They should be well-versed in cost methodology, cost-volume analysis, pricing, profitability and variance analysis. Additionally, they should have strong technical, problem-solving, analytical, communication and organizational skills. A bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance or business-related field is typically necessary to become a senior cost accountant.