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Understanding PCP Certification: 3 Things You Should Know Before You Start Your Career in Accounting

February 13, 2019

accounting and payroll diploma

If you are considering a career in payroll, you should know the benefits of Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) certification. PCP certification can unlock doors in your career. In fact, for many in the payroll sector, PCP certification is the foundation of their success.

Below is a look at three things you should know about PCP certification and how it can help you launch your payroll career.

1. PCP Certification Begins with Completing Certain Educational Requirements

To become certified you will need to complete three core courses—Payroll Compliance Legislation, Payroll Fundamentals 1, and Payroll Fundamentals 2—along with a CPA-approved Introduction to Accounting course. These courses will teach you the foundational knowledge you’ll need to work in payroll, such as compliance requirements, calculating different types of pay, and documentation. When comparing different schools that offer an accounting and payroll diploma, be sure that they offer these essential courses.

PCP certification includes an education requirement

PCP certification includes an education requirement

2. Meet the Necessary Work Requirement to Start Your Career in Accounting and Payroll

Another step involved in becoming PCP certified is completing the one-year work experience requirement. You must complete this requirement within five years prior to or five years after the start date of your Payroll Compliance Legislation course. Be aware that the work experience requirement is weighted. What this means is that only time spent doing payroll work will actually count towards meeting your one-year requirement. After completing your work experience and education requirements, you submit a Certification Declaration in order to receive your PCP certification.

PCP certification also requires one year of weighted work experience

PCP certification also requires one year of weighted work experience

3. PCP Certification Will Help You Stand Out to Employers

PCP certification can help you stand out as you begin your career. This is because PCP certification helps demonstrate to employers that you are qualified and ready for the responsibilities of the role.

This can be very important for many employers, especially because payroll departments tend to be very small. According to the CPA, 32 per cent of payroll departments consist of just one person and a further 43 per cent have only 2-3 employees. Additionally, there are more than 200 regulatory requirements that payroll departments must meet and companies face significant penalties for violating those requirements.

This means that most payroll professionals have a large amount of responsibility in their daily job duties. Employers want to make sure that payroll workers are ready to handle that responsibility when hired. The payroll and accounting training needed to receive the PCP certificate assures employers that you are serious about advancing your skills as a payroll professional and that you understand the regulations and requirements involved.

Are you ready to start a fulfilling career in accounting and payroll?

Contact the National Academy of Health and Business to learn about our programs and how to get started!

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