By Evelyn Baker
What is the typical day like for a staff accountant at Weinstein Spira? I am glad you asked! As a staff accountant who rotates between tax and audit, I can speak about my typical day, noting that things vary depending on the season and whether I am working from home or in the office. Currently, Weinstein Spira allows me to have a home office alongside working in the corporate office a few times per week. This blog post is geared more to the tax side, as I am most familiar with this season, having joined Weinstein Spira full-time in September 2021 and started on a tax rotation at that time.
Working from Home as an Accountant
Let’s start with my home office routine, as that is what I follow most of the time. Even though I do not have a commute, I still wake up an hour before starting work to get ready—eating breakfast, taking a walk around my apartment complex, etc. When I sit down at my desk, it is a signal that the workday has begun. The first thing I do is check emails to see if there is anything that needs my immediate attention. Other than that, my daily tasks depend on my current rotation, tax or audit.
For new tax returns, I make sure all the required information has been loaded online (including tax-related documents such as W-2s, 1099s, 1098-Ts, brokerage statements, etc.). I double-check what is there against our firm’s checklist before inputting data into the software tool we use to generate electronic returns.
If I notice anything missing, I let the reviewer know so they can follow up with the client. If there are any new documents required for this year’s tax return, I add that to the client’s checklist as something to look for again next year. Before submitting the return for review and approval by the reviewer, shareholder, and ultimately the client, I ensure correct spelling and numbers (no transposed digits). My job is to make the tax return as accurate as possible for quick and easy reviewing.
If I have questions during this process, I save them up and email the reviewer in bulk. When needed, we meet face-to-face or via teleconference to discuss any technical issues, which may result in a walkthrough to resolve the problem.
I will have to get back to you about my audit rotation. Part two is coming soon!
Afternoon into Evening
My lunch time and what I eat varies from day to day. At home, it consists of something light from the refrigerator, and then maybe a quick coffee break at Starbucks down the street. Afterwards, I continue to work on tax returns, which is an all-day activity during busy season. To combat fatigue or burnout, I switch gears at about 4 or 5 o’clock in the afternoon, and head to a local CrossFit gym where I take some “me” time for a couple of hours. This gets me out of the house or office and refreshes my brain to do more work after dinner, if needed. Weinstein Spira has a flex-time policy that lets me work evenings and weekends to complete my work assignments, as long as I am available during core office hours Monday through Friday to take phone calls and/or attend meetings.
Working in the Office as an Accountant
There are benefits to working from home but there are some cool aspects when I do go into the office. The main differences when going into the office are what I wear, my commute, and getting to see people face-to-face. The social aspect is what adds real value to my day, as it is the only time I go out to lunch. Nothing fancy, but even a short walk to the nearby sandwich shop to grab a bite goes a long way in strengthening connections, building camaraderie and expanding my network—a valuable use of my time, both personally and professionally.
Regardless of where I spend the workday, when I finally log out of my computer, there is still more. Studying for the CPA exam is currently an important part of my daily routine and will be until I pass the exam itself. I also make it a point to get together with friends whenever I can, including participation in a recreational softball league on Friday nights—a wonderful way to end the week and relieve stress!
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I admit I have a lot on my plate! But the flexibility of working at Weinstein Spira helps me to do it all. The ability to work from home is a big plus, enabling me to fit more into a day without becoming overwhelmed. I love my job and the balanced work-life culture!