Financial accountancy is an art and science that involves recording transactions in a particular manner. This activity can be traced back to the times of barter exchange when pottery and charcoal was used to keep a record of such contracts and transactions. The idea of accounting is simple - record the transactions as briefly and honestly as possible.
Luca Pacioli, a 15th century mathematician and philosopher introduced the double entry book-keeping rules and terms (the system had been used before on smaller scales), which further advanced the art of accountancy. Today, there are countless purposes for which books of accounts are prepared.
Why is Accounting Important?
- From a layman's view, accountancy is keeping records of transactions. Thus, most basic and simple motive of such an activity is to keep a record for further use.
- This recorded data helps the person to determine the earnings and expenditures that have taken place.
- In addition, such records are also proof that such a transaction has taken place. The last basic intention is to determine fields where the income can be increased and expenditure can be decreased.
- Personal accounts are simple to maintain, but the double entry system accounts are quite difficult and complex. However, the double entry system is a preferred method, as this system is used to record and analyze money or money worth that gets transacted.
Importance in Business
- In the world of business, the accounts and finance departments are engrossed in a daily activity of recording and analyzing transactions.
- The basic task is to first analyze the proposed transaction, and then sanction it and record it.
- The business world functions upon such daily routine juggling of transactional data.
- The further process involves making statements and presenting it to the management for further analysis and strategy planning.
- From the statuary compliance point of view, the process of accountancy must be done with the help of accounting standards prescribed by law.
- These standards provide the accounting department with a framework that has to be respected and lawfully followed.
- Another process that is a very important branch of accountancy is costing. The process of costing involves mathematically calculating the value of a particular transaction even before it takes place.
- Cost sheets which contain such information are also included in statements that are put before the management.
Importance of Data and Information
- Accounting data or information is used by a number of people, such as government officials, investors, and creditors.
- It is customary, and by law, compulsory for companies to present an annual report before the public that carries accounting information of the previous year.
- Such a report is often used as a conclusive evidence while calculating the tax liability of a business or a company.
- Apart from that, creditors extend their credit on the basis of such information. In addition, investors conduct balance sheet analysis on the basis of that information.
On the whole, the importance of accounting can be summed up with one epic statement from the movie Jerry Maguire, 'Show me the money'. Books of accounts indeed show us the money and its worth. More than that, such books shout aloud the areas where we are wasting it and the areas where we are earning it.
Today, as a result of advances in computing technology we have convenient accounting software that helps individual's carry out accounting tasks easily.