Management Accounting Career
Considering a career as a Management Accountant? Find out all you need to know to decide whether this career is right for you.
- What does a Management Accountant do?
- How to become a Management Accountant?
- What is a Management Accountant's Salary?
- How does the future look for a Management Accountant?
What does a Management Accountant do?
A Management Accountant's role in a company is a large combination of management and accounting tasks. A quality Management Accountant will start out with a comprehensive understanding of an industry's fundamental business conepts. Secondly, a Management Accountant should be familiar with all financial functions of a company that leads to its success (e.g. Business Analysis, Management Accounting & Reporting, Strategic Management and Business Applications).
Successful Management Accountants are masters in deciding how to collect pertinent data and accurately analyze internal controls and financial statements. Misunderstandings in data and financial reporting relevance can lead to dire circumstances.
The Management Accountant's ability to evaluate and assess current and future programs and policies is what typically sets them part from other accountants. Management Accountants are often part of executive teams who are involved with strategic planning. The indepth industry knowledge of a Management Accountant aids executive teams in creating much more efficient and cost effective business plans.
Top Management Accountants are also champions in developing interpersonal skills and communication techniques. A Management Accountant is an expeditor of financial and business information. They will often be in charge of coordinating the goals of various teams while also explaining complex business accounting concepts and ideas to less financial savvy upper management.
Many high level Management Accountants prove their devotion to the occupation and demonstrate their expertise by earning the distinction of a Certified Management Accountant (CMA). Such a designation typically results in a more effective Management Accountant with much more opportunity for upward career mobility.
Management Accounting is a time-consuming and difficult career. However, the financial and personal benefits attract many motivated individuals.
How to Become a Management Accountant?
Educational requirements may vary slightly depending on the company, the area you wish to work and your previous work experience.
For most Management Accounting careers, the minimum educational requirement is the completion of a Bachelor's degree. However, there are many organizations who are now requiring MBA degrees with an emphasis in Accounting or Finance.
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Beyond a quality education and the development of skills necessary to succeed as a Management Accountant, you will need to learn where to gain experience by finding career opportunities.
You will find some career opportunities on portals such as The Institute of Management Accountants; however, you will probably have quicker results if you contact a local recruiter or begin contacting hiring firms directly. You may find Management Accounting openings under newspaper or online classifieds (Craigslist or Monster.com).
You may also earn your Certified Management Accounting designation through the Institute of Management Accountants organization. The link is posted above.
What is a Management Accountant's Salary?
As a Management Accountant, your salary can vary significantly depending on your level of experience, your level of acquired education and size of the company you work for.
The median salary* for an Accountant is $54,600.
The top 10% of Accountants are pulling in an average of $94,100.
For highly educated Management Accountants (designated as Financial Managers), the median salary* is $91,000 and the top 10% of Financial Managers are pulling in over $150,000.
In order to boost yourself to this level of success, you will need to perform highly, develop years of experience at a respectable company and lastly, earn yourself an advanced degree.
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* Source: The Bureau of Labor and Statistics for 2006
How does the future look for a Management Accountant?
From 2004 to 2014, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics forecasts job growth in the Accounting profession will be around 22%. This is far above the average growth rate of U.S. based professions.
For Management Accountants, this number may in fact be higher. With industries constantly evolving and battling increasing competition, individuals with Management Accounting knowledge are invaluable. Coordination of financial information and company strategy is vitally important when competition increases and margins slim.
The future looks bright for the Management Accountants profession, so go ahead and get started!
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