Career and Education Opportunities for Clerks in Portland, Maine
Many educational and employment opportunities exist for clerks in the Portland, Maine area. The national trend for clerks sees this job pool growing by about 15.3% over the next eight years. Clerks generally compile data, compute fees and charges, and prepare invoices for billing purposes.
The income of a clerk is about $13 per hour or $28,250 annually on average in Maine. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $14 hourly or $30,950 per year on average. Incomes for clerks are better than in the overall category of Billing and Bookkeeping in Maine, and better than the overall Billing and Bookkeeping category nationally.
There are twenty-three schools of higher education in the Portland area, including one within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can get a degree to start your career as a clerk. Clerks usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a clerk if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Clerk
In general, clerks compile data, compute fees and charges, and prepare invoices for billing purposes. They also duties include computing costs and calculating rates for goods, services, and shipment of goods; posting data; and keeping other relevant records.
Clerks verify precision of billing data and revise any errors. They also operate typing and billing machines. Equally important, clerks have to contact customers so as to obtain or relay account data. They are often called upon to perform bookkeeping work, including posting data and keeping other archives concerning costs of goods and services and the shipment of goods. Finally, clerks ready itemized statements or invoices; and record amounts due for items purchased or services rendered.
Every day, clerks are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.
It is important for clerks to resolve discrepancies in accounting reports. They are often called upon to type billing documents and credit forms, using typewriters or computers. They also keep archives of invoices and support documents. They are sometimes expected to inspect documents such as purchase orders or hospital archives so as to compute fees and charges due. Somewhat less frequently, clerks are also expected to consult sources such as rate books and insurance company representatives in order to establish specific charges and data such as rules and government tax and tariff data.
Clerks sometimes are asked to compile reports of cost factors, such as labor and equipment. They also have to be able to inspect compiled data on operating costs and revenues so as to set rates And finally, they sometimes have to operate typing and billing machines.
Like many other jobs, clerks must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:
- Accounts Receivable Specialist. Locate and notify customers of delinquent accounts by mail, telephone, or personal visit to solicit payment. Duties include receiving payment and posting amount to customer's account; preparing statements to credit department if customer fails to respond; initiating repossession proceedings or service disconnection; keeping records of collection and status of accounts.
- Bank Teller. Receive and pay out money. Keep records of money and negotiable instruments involved in a financial institution's various transactions.
- Bookkeeper. Compute, classify, and record numerical data to keep financial records complete. Perform any combination of routine calculating, posting, and verifying duties to obtain primary financial data for use in maintaining accounting records. May also check the accuracy of figures, calculations, and postings pertaining to business transactions recorded by other workers.
- Broker Assistant. Perform clerical duties involving the purchase or sale of securities. Duties include writing orders for stock purchases and sales, computing transfer taxes, verifying stock transactions, accepting and delivering securities, tracking stock price fluctuations, computing equity, and keeping records of daily transactions and holdings.
- Gaming Cashier. Conduct financial transactions for patrons in gaming establishments. May reconcile daily summaries of transactions to balance books. Accept patron's credit application and verify credit references to provide check-cashing authorization or to establish house credit accounts. May sell gambling chips, tokens, or tickets to patrons, or to other workers for resale to patrons. May convert gaming chips, tokens, or tickets to currency upon patron's request. May use a cash register or computer to record transaction.
- Loan Inspector. Interview loan applicants to elicit information; investigate applicants' backgrounds and verify references; prepare loan request papers; and forward findings, reports, and documents to appraisal department. Review loan papers to ensure completeness, and complete transactions between loan establishment, borrowers, and sellers upon approval of loan.
- Payroll Machine Operator. Operate machines that automatically perform mathematical processes, such as addition, subtraction, and division, to calculate and record billing, accounting, and other numerical data. Duties include operating special billing machines to prepare statements, bills, and invoices, and operating bookkeeping machines to copy and post data, make computations, and compile records of transactions.
- Secretary. Perform routine clerical and administrative functions such as drafting correspondence, scheduling appointments, organizing and maintaining paper and electronic files, or providing information to callers.
- Statement Clerk. Prepare and distribute bank statements to customers, answer inquiries, and reconcile discrepancies in records and accounts.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Clerk Training
Central Maine Community College - Auburn, ME
Central Maine Community College, 1250 Turner Street, Auburn, ME 04210-6498. Central Maine Community College is a small college located in Auburn, Maine. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,426 students. Central Maine Community College has an associate's degree program in Accounting Technology/Technician and Bookkeeping which graduated nineteen students in 2008.
Certified Medical Coder: Experienced medical office professionals with exceptional coding skills are eligible to sit for the Certified Medical Coder (CMC) exam.
For more information, see the Practice Management Institute website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Portland, Maine
Portland is situated in Cumberland County, Maine. It has a population of over 62,561, which has shrunk by 2.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 102, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $164,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were built in Portland, down from thirty-two the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 19 minutes. More than 36.4% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.0%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Portland is 6.3%, which is less than Maine's average of 7.6%. About 14.1% of Portland's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.
The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.4%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Mariners Church, Swedenborgian Church and Stroudwater Christian Church are among the churches located in Portland. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church.
Portland is home to the Cumberland Wharf and the Browns Wharf as well as Longfellow Square and Hadlock Field. Shopping centers in the area include Mill Creek Shopping Center, Monument Square Shopping Center and Portland East Shopping Center. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Fairfield Inn Portland Airport and Ramada Limited Portland for temporary stays in the area.