Accounting Basics: The Accounting Process

May 19th, 2015
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San Jose State University
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As implied earlier, today's electronic accounting systems tend to obscure the traditional forms of the accounting cycle. Nevertheless, the same basic process that bookkeepers and accountants used to perform by hand are present in today's accounting software.

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Accounting, oraccountancy, is the measurement, processing and communication of financial information abouteconomic entities.[1][2]Accounting, which has been called the "language of business",[3]measures the results of an organization's economic activities and conveys this information to a variety of users includinginvestors,creditors,management, andregulators.[4]Practitioners of accounting are known asaccountants.Accounting can be divided into several fields includingfinancial accounting,management accounting,auditing, andtax accounting.[5][6]Financial accounting focuses on the reporting of an organization's financial information, including the preparation offinancial statements, to external users of the information, such asinvestors,regulatorsandsuppliers;[7]and management accounting focuses on the measurement, analysis and reporting of information for internal use by management.[1][7]The recording of financial transactions, so that summaries of the financials may be presented in financial reports, is known asbookkeeping, of whichdouble-entry bookkeepingis the most common system.[8]Accounting is facilitated byaccounting organizationssuch as standard-setters,accounting firmsandprofessional bodies.Financial statementsare usually audited byaccounting firms,[9]and are prepared in accordance withgenerally accepted accounting principles(GAAP).[7]GAAP is set by various standard-setting organizations su

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