From Novice to Leader: My Path to Becoming an In-Charge Accountant

Nick Ashmore, an In-Charge Accountant at Cray Kaiser talks about his path to becoming an in-charge accountant. He shares about the culture at CK along with everything he learned during his journey.


My name is Nick Ashmore. My current position at Cray Kaiser is an in-charge accountant and I am a hybrid between the accounting services and the tax departments.

So on the accounting side, I am handling a lot of quarterly payroll, quarterly financial statement compilations. I am assisting with accounting consulting, sporadically as clients need assistance with journal entries or purchases they’re making and how to record things. I assist with a lot of tax returns, mainly during tax season and the tax extension filing deadlines. I do sales tax. I am currently learning depreciation, the ins and outs and becoming the go-to person for the accounting services department. I do a lot of different things.

Cray Kaiser has met every single expectation, want and need that I anticipated when I first started. I was looking for a firm with resources for me and them. I was looking for the collaborative almost tight-knit community vibe from the firm which I did get as well. I’ve made some great friends or great co-workers. You know, you’re here nine to five every single day five days a week for years, you don’t always want to just be work, work, work, got to have a little bit of play involved, a little bit of that relationship aspect on what’s going on with people’s lives, so to say. So like, you know, we have meetings every Monday where we go over what we’re working on, what we need help on, the basics and accounting, but you know, it’s also, what’d you do this weekend? You went shopping, what’d you get?

My first year here, I think I learned more than my previous three years in accounting from two different firms combined and that was exactly what I was looking for in my next position and why I ultimately chose to come on board with Cray Kaiser. They had the resources and the staff to kind of train and tailor my skillset to what was needed.

My first year at Cray Kaiser, I had never done a financial statement compilation, whether it’s an annual, quarterly or monthly. It’s just something I haven’t had experience with. So there was a learning curve there, but eventually I got the basics down, was able to apply my accounting knowledge to it once I learned the processes and the ins and outs of the client. So I’d say that was a big achievement for me and it was something that I’ve used ever since. So it was a good skill to learn and knowledge to have.

They had a great onboarding process. For the first couple months even though I had a couple years of experience, it was essentially a lot of training, learning the ins and outs of the firm, the softwares that you use, the processes they have in place. They were more up-to-date. I was looking for someone up-to-date technology wise, you know, and paper files are going away. We want everything on our computer, digitally, at the tips of our fingers. They have all that, which helps you increase efficiency and productivity. There are challenges out there. I went through trainings, I asked questions, and I learned a lot.

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