A Management Accountant's primary role is to provide the senior stakeholders of the business with financial insight and expertise to facilitate high level decision making and define key business strategies.
Management accountants provide the financial information that senior stakeholders need to make business decisions – for example, reports on which business areas have been profitable or not. Whilst the presentation and analysis of financial data is an important part of the Management Accounts role, management accounting is more than just presenting figures. Management Accountants must be able to interpret trends, make business based predictions whilst also considering the non-financial, soft metrics of the business.
From a high level view, Management and Financial Accounting appear to be similar positions, as both are concerned with monitoring a company’s financial position and creating reports. However, Management Accounting differs from Financial Accounting as whereas the latter is concerned with providing external parties with a company's financial performance, Management Accounting is internally facing, providing ‘Heads Of’, C-Suite and board members with information to define strategy and improve performance.
Career progression as a Management Accountant can take you right to the top. Experienced gained in this role often leads to a position as part of the company’s senior management team, and it’s not uncommon to see successful CEOs that have come from a Management Accountant background.
Management Accountants are typically strategic, ambitious and want to get into high levels of management or even run their own business. Typically a Management Accountant would start their career at an employer who sponsors their study and qualification from a professional body. Although each professional body includes an element of company financial management as part of their training, the majority of management accountants prefer to qualify with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).
CIMA training involves two stages, firstly the CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting, which is an entry-level qualification with five exams. Then secondly, the CIMA Professional Qualification, which comprises ten further exams.
Whilst many employers will ask for a university degree, this doesn’t always have to be the case. The CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting is eligible to school leavers with a view to enhancing business and financial knowledge and providing a stepping stone to the Professional CIMA Qualification.
Management Accountant Salary:
A professionally qualified Management Accountant’s salary can range from £50,000 - £70,000. However, if a career progresses to part of the senior management team, a Management Accountant’s salary can easily enter 6 figure sums.
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