A chart of accounts (COA) is a financial and organizational tool that provides an index of all the accounts in an accounting system. It is a list of all the accounts you should use to record financial transactions in your general ledger, broken down into categories such as liabilities, cash, and operating income. The chart of accounts is a tool that lists all the financial accounts included in a company's financial statements and helps you keep track of where your money comes from and where it goes. A company has the flexibility to adapt its chart of accounts to better suit its needs, including adding accounts as needed.
Each account in the chart of accounts is assigned a name and a unique number with which it can be identified. Companies use a chart of accounts (COA) to organize their finances and provide stakeholders, such as investors and shareholders, with a clearer view of their financial health. Creating a chart of accounts can provide a useful tool that allows business management to easily record transactions, prepare financial statements, and review income and expenses in detail. The chart of accounts provides the name of each account in the list, a brief description and the identification codes specific to each account.
Setting Up Your Chart of AccountsWhen setting up a chart of accounts, generally, the accounts that are listed will depend on the nature of the business.
To make it easier for readers to locate specific accounts, each chart of accounts usually contains a name, a brief description, and an identification code. In general, when including accounts in the chart of accounts, you should use a numbering system to facilitate identification.