With a diverse economy encompassing banking, insurance, technology, manufacturing, and research and development, Ohio is a center of industry and commerce in the Midwest, with a $625.7 billion GDP that ranks seventh in the nation. Manufacturing accounts for the largest portion of the state's economy, and this sizeable industry has helped the Ohio recover from the recession, leading to a recovery growth rate higher than the national average. Twenty-five Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in Ohio, including Kroger, Proctor & Gamble, Nationwide, and Macy's, and all the “Big Four” international CPA firms have offices in the state. Growth for accounting jobs is expected to be slightly lower than average through 2026, but a strong economy that employs almost 55,000 accountants and auditors makes Ohio a desirable state for CPAs and other financial professionals.

Ohio at a glance

Population 11,658,609
Per Capita Income $26,937
Unemployment Rate 4.6%
Fortune 500 Companies 24
Licensed CPA Firms 1,831

Accounting Programs in Ohio

Search our comprehensive school directory to explore the accounting programs in Ohio, including campus-based, online and hybrid programs.

Accounting Salaries and Employment

Accountants and auditors in the state of Ohio can expect to see a 8% increase in employment opportunities by 2022, that's compared to an average national growth rate of just over 13%. Potential employers include SS&G which grossed $90.00 million in 2014, and Clark, Schaefer, Hackett & Co. which generated $52.33 million in revenue last year.

Ohio firms will employ close to 44,000 additional accountants over the next seven years. Ohioans can expect to earn anywhere between $37,250 and $113,810 working in various accounting services in the state, with wages contingent upon education level, licensure status and area of speciality.

Projected Job Growth for Accountants

44,500 Employees2016
49,960 Employees2026
Ohio 10.9% increase
1,397,700 Employees2016
1,537,600 Employees2026
United States 9.1% increase
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics OES - State Employment Survey

Accounting Salaries by Specialty

Ohio Avg. Annual Wage United States Avg. Annual Wage

Associate Degree Recommended

Bookkeeping and Auditing Clerks

\ $39,000

Payroll Clerks

\ $42,380

Credit Counselors

\ $49,640

Bachelor's Degree Recommended

Cost Estimators

\ $63,350

Tax Examiners and Collectors

\ $64,910

Master's Degree Recommended

Accountants and Auditors

\ $72,350

Budget Analysts

\ $75,000

Personal Financial Advisors

\ $109,640

Financial Managers

\ $132,360
Source: BLS OES - Industry Profile

Top-paying cities for accountants

  1. Dayton
  2. Cleveland-Elyria
  3. Columbus
  4. Akron
  5. Toledo
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics OES - State Employment Survey

Major firms headquartered in Ohio

Count Firm Location 2014 Revenue (in millions)
1 Clark, Schaefer, Hackett & Co. Cincinnati, OH $63
2 Hill, Barth & King Boardma, OH $60
3 Skoda Minotti & Co. Mayfield Village, OH $50
4 Cohen & Co. Cleveland, OH $47
5 Rea & Associates New New Philadelphia, OH $35

Accounting Today named these firms among the highest performing in a multi-state region. Rankings as based upon reported net revenues from 2014. Source: Accounting Today, "Top 100 Firms and Regional Leaders"

Becoming a certified public accountant (CPA) in Ohio

Potential CPAs of Ohio sit for the uniform CPA exam administered by NASBA and must meet the eligibility requirements listed below. Various colleges and universities in the state have accounting programs with top passing rates. The schools ranked by CPA passing rates below include both first time testers and candidates returning to attempt the exam again, as is common for many students.

Ohio recognizes CPA mobility legislation as well as obtaining a license by transfer.

Eligibility for CPA Licensure in Ohio

In order to be eligible to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam in Ohio, candidates must fulfill the qualifications below:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be a resident of the state of Ohio
  • Fulfill the 150 hour educational requirement
  • Participate in international programs
  • Complete 30 semester hours in accounting
  • Complete 24 semester hours in business
  • Complete 1 year of experience working in accounting
  • Complete the Ohio Board of Accountancy course on basic professional standards and responsibilities
Age Requirement 18
Citizenship Requirement No
Residency Requirement Yes
Social Security # Requirement Yes
Education Requirement for Licensure Bachelor's degree (150 hours)
Participates in International Programs Yes
Hours in Accounting 30 semester hours
Exam Sitting Requirements 150 hours
Experience Requirements 1 year of accounting experience
Ethics Exam State board course

A tutorial covering the computer-based CPA exam may be found on the AICPA CPA Exam website.

Source: The American Institute of CPAs

CPA exam fees in Ohio

  • Application Fee $170
  • Auditing & Attestation $208
  • Financial Accounting & Reporting $208
  • Regulation $208
  • Business Environment & Concepts $208

Special Fees: A registration fee applies in addition to the application fee, and varies depending on the number of sections an individual is taking. The registration fee for all four sections is $130, for three sections is $110, for two sections is $90, for one section is $70.

Certifying and Professional Organizations

The Accountancy Board of Ohio regulates licensure, CPA firm peer reviews and continuing professional education requirements. It also handles complaints and cooperates with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy, which administers the uniform CPA exam for candidates in Ohio.

The Ohio Society of CPAs is an organization dedicated to the interests of current and future Ohio CPAs by providing continuing education programs, advocacy, discounts on services and by promoting student interest in the field and promoting CPA credentials.

Accountancy Board of Ohio


77 South High Street 18th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215

Phone Number

(614) 995-0192

Ohio Society of CPAs


535 Metro Place South
Dublin, OH 43017

Phone Number

(614) 764-2727