ACCA - The global body for professional accountants


General ledger (GL) work involves the recording and processing of a range of financial transactions required for financial reporting. There are a number of analyst roles which can be found within this function:

The GL analysis and Management reporting analyst is responsible for carrying out regular analysis and reporting activities to support internal customers across all business units.

The GL Consolidations / reporting analyst is responsible for performing financial consolidation work.

The GL Inter-company analyst is responsible for inter-company accounting, in line with accounting standards and internal policies, working with the different legal and operating entities within the organisation to ensure the accurate and time treatment of inter-company transactions.

The GL Reconciliations analyst is responsible for performing the day to day and month-end activities necessary for the timely and accurate completion of the GL reconciliations process.

The GL Accruals / prepayments analyst is responsible for performing the accruals / prepayments accounting within the Shared Service Centre (SSC). The analyst maintains records and processes journals within the system to ensure that accurate financial results are produced.

The GL manager has overall responsibility for leading the teams that undertake all GL functions and in assisting the business units and cross-functional teams in their decision-making processes. The GL manager will work closely between the SSC and the finance / business functions within the retained organisation and will support other functions on an ad hoc basis.

Entry and progression

General ledger management is a key SSO function and the entry point is usually at the analyst level, leading to a supervisory level for those with adequate experience and showing team management capability. At entry level the work will focus on the reconciliations function, but job progression and enlargement may include working in other related functions such as Inter-company, accruals / prepayments, consolidations / reporting and reconciliations. Progression and development in this function is usually achieved by gaining experience and competence in the analysis and management reporting function, but often development can include job rotation into other related areas of GL and career progression to General ledger manager, but ultimately an SSO manager can reach the position of SSC Service manager who has overall responsibility for managing the centre and all functions within it. 

As far as suitable learning and qualifications for these roles are concerned, the competencies covered by the analyst and supervisor roles relate most closely to the Foundations level suite of qualifications. These include the Introductory and Intermediate Certificate of Financial and Management Accounting. As employees in the GL function progress from supervisor to SSO manager level, and possibly higher, the competences they need will relate more closely to the Diploma and Advanced Diploma in Accounting and Business offered within the main ACCA Qualification.

Career progression in this function can be supported by learning and demonstrating professional behaviours associated with competence and such behaviours can be demonstrated at different levels of competence as you progress further within your career.  To learn about and reflect on these behaviours please select the behaviours tab in the main menu when searching the competency framework.