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Chartered Management Accountant Profile


This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as a Chartered Management Accountant. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as a Chartered Management Accountant
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Chartered Management Accountant Work Information

Finding Suitable Work

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Working Duties Expected

Chartered management accountants provide the financial information necessary for the planning and control of organisations and commercial companies. They establish and maintain financial policies and management information systems, as well as liaise with management colleagues on all aspects of finance.

Management accountants look to the future (rather than the past, as in auditing accounts and tax returns). They can analyse the performance of a business and advise on how it can develop. They can be found working in:

• industry;
• commerce;
• not-for-profit organisations;
• public sector organisations.

They may work in a finance function or within specialist departments providing financial advice and insight to other professionals.

What does the role encounter?

A Chartered Management Accountants work includes:

• creating, implementing and monitoring processes and procedures around the creation of monthly forecasts;
• preparing periodic financial statements including profit and loss accounts, budgets, cashflows, variance analysis and commentaries;
• investigating and developing systems of internal control and conducting internal audits;
• managing income and expenditure, sales, payroll and stocks;
• negotiating for major projects loans and grants;
• offering professional judgement on financial matters and advising on ways of improving business performance;
• giving input into strategic planning;
• liaising with other function managers to put the finance view in context;
• completing projects within agreed turn-around times;
• maintaining evidence of continuing professional development (CPD).

Roles may vary depending on the management structure, eg there may be some openings in large firms in a business advisory role. Roles can also vary depending on the nature of the organisation and, with larger organisations, the department or departments that the individual is based in or supports.

What level of salary and benefits are there?

These figures are purely for guidance only. Salaries may vary for the area the job is situated in, age, experience along with a host of other factors:

• Typical starting salaries: £14,000 - £25,000.
• Typical salaries for newly qualified chartered management accountants: £25,000 - £40,000.
• Typical salaries at senior levels: £55,000 - £100,000 plus.
• Starting salaries vary enormously according to the size of the organisation, its location and sector. The highest salaries tend to be found in London and the Thames Valley regions. Latest survey details for UK regions and Ireland can be found on the website of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA). Salaries increase substantially on passing the examinations. CIMA report that 9% of their membership earn more than £100,000 per annum.
• Some companies offer excellent packages to cover the cost of studying, including tuition fees and paid study leave.

What type of hours will I have to work?

• Working hours typically include regular extra hours but not weekends or shifts.
• The work is office based but not desk bound.
• After gaining several years of experience, self-employment or freelance work in financial or management consultancy is possible.
• Project work is sometimes available through agencies but this is more common between jobs than as a career itself. Part-time work is more likely with large employers and temporary project working is possible.
• Women make up an increasing proportion of the new intake. New registrations with CIMA indicate around 40% are female. Women are also beginning to take the more senior positions.
• Jobs can be found nationally.
• Chartered management accountants work for a wide variety of employers in the private and public sectors.
• High levels of study whilst working requires significant personal time and determination. The post-qualification workload can be heavy with tight deadlines and high quality demands.
• Travel within a working day, absence from home at night and overseas travel are all occasionally needed.

What type of skills will I need?

You will need to have some or all of the following type of skills to carry out this job:

• be comfortable with figures;
• have excellent oral and written communication skills;
• offer IT proficiency;
• possess an aptitude and liking for team work;
• have the confidence to know where your expertise ends and another team member's begins;
• demonstrate a lively and enquiring mind together with analytical and problem solving skills;
• have the stamina and motivation to juggle the demands of examinations and career, as well as a willingness to work long hours.

What type of training will I receive?

The training is a combination of examinations and practical experience. The examinations of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) are arranged in three stages; foundation, intermediate and advanced. To achieve Chartered Management Accountant (ACMA) status, you must complete all three levels, and gain three years of relevant practical experience. This must cover three areas: Basic, Core and Supplementary. At least 18 months of the practical experience must be gained in the Core area. CIMA requires that practical experience is recorded in a 'Career Profile' consisting of personal information, a summary of full employment history and an enhanced CV including details of all relevant practical experience.

Many employers offering CIMA training to graduates will have a structured programme that combines the practical experience required with opportunities to study for the examinations. Those who have relevant degrees may qualify for exemptions from certain examinations. Study methods vary but could be block study with a tutor, evening classes or distance learning, or a combination of these.

Career Progression:

Career progression is dependent on sucessfully completing Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) qualifications. Post-qualification promotion will depend on experience and skills developed, such as management and transferable skills like communication and team work.

Experience of working on specific projects may be used to gain specialised expertise or to enable a move to a more strategic role in general management.

Mobility will aid advancement - it may be necessary to look outside a company to gain promotion (if opportunities are limited within). Some larger employers will encourage transfers as professional development. They may also require frequent moves to different locations while training, in order to gain maximum exposure to the business.

The skills acquired from studying the CIMA examinations, combined with related experience, can open up other career options. CIMA members also work in management consulting, business analysis and project management, for example. Progression can be to senior positions such as finance director and possibly chief executive.

What Sort Of Industries Have A Requirement For This Type Of Job?

• manufacturing;
• utilities;
• retail;
• local and central government. 

Any Related Types Of Jobs?

Yes. This list is not exhaustive but here are some similar and associated types of role:

• Chartered accountant
• Chartered certified accountant
• Chartered public finance accountant
• Company secretary
• Corporate treasurer
• Financial manager.

What trade magazines or publications are available for this industry?

All of the following magazines and journals can be purchased from any good bookstore:

Accountancy Age.
TARGET City and Finance.
Hobson's Finance Casebook.

Where can I find further information?

Further information can be found by visiting any of the following bodies and organisations the addresses and their respective websites are:

Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
26 Chapter St, London SW1P 4NP
Tel: 020 78849 2251

Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (Republic of Ireland Division)
44 Upper Mount Street, Dublin 2
Tel: +353 (0)1 676 1721

Financial Training Company (FTC)
7-13 Melior Street, London SE1 3QP
Tel: 020 7407 5000

Other Useful Chartered Management Accountant Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Chartered Management Accountant job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Chartered Management Accountant Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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