After a tiring day at work, slogging almost ten hours for five days a week, most professionals tend to ask themselves, “What am I doing this for? Do I even like what I am doing and am I making enough to compensate for the efforts I’m put in?” If either of these questions draws up the answer as ‘no’, then it’s time for a career introspection. For accounts and finance professionals, there’s a way to turn the answer of ‘no’ to these insightful questions to ‘yes’, through a CMA certification.
What is a CMA? Shortly put, it is an add on certification which will accelerate your career at a global level. For anyone who is in the field of management, business or finance, CMA is your passport to worldwide recognition and acknowledgment as a financial expert, which adds positively to your CV and ultimately to the money you draw in as a professional.
Deeper Understanding of CMA
That was the long and short of it, but now let’s get to understand this certification on a deeper level. Corporate Finance and Management Accounting are two major areas an accounting professional at any level deals with. That’s where the major USP of CMA comes in; because it is a globally recognized credential certification in financial accounting and strategic management focusing on corporate finance and management accounting.
The certification is offered by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). For those in this field, this name would not be an unknown one. A division within the IMA, Institute of Certified Management Accountants (ICMA), awards the CMA certification. With a reach in over 140 countries, IMA was founded 100 years ago in New York. As per their website, this is what makes them the best.
IMA is the only institute offering CMA. Having been around for over forty years now, the CMA certification has claimed a global benchmark for management accounting professions.
Divided into two parts, the CMA Exams are undertaken three times a year.
What kind of employment opportunities does a CMA have?
Being practical thinkers, any financial and accounting expert would think of the ROI before taking any major decision. Hence it is understandable they will approach CMA with the same thought. So, what kind of professional opportunities does CMA certification open up?
Because finance is a core part of any business, the need for CMAs is equal in private as well as public organizations, and even in government agencies. The most common industries where a CMA can be employed include:
– Educational services
– Insurance and real estate
– Medical and health services
– Communications and utility services
Their skills and expertise can fetch them positions such as:
– Cost accountants
– Managerial accountants
– Industrial accountants
– Private accountants
– Corporate accountants
What are the roles and responsibilities of a CMA?
Though CMAs are in demand in a wide variety of industries, a few common jobs for all CMAs across every industry include:
– Cost management
– Performance management
– Profitability analysis
– Investment decisions
– Internal controls
– Financial reporting
– Planning and budgeting
Under these roles, their everyday tasks and duties may comprise of:
• Identifying prospects for investment management
• Acting as a counselor and managing lower-level accountants
• Preparing financial statements like income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements
• Making presentations to senior management
• Creating strategies to improve and manage various internal and external risks
• Arranging funds and probable options for financing
• Monitoring and controlling compliance
What value does a CMA hold?
Having a CMA certification opens up countless opportunities in the management accounting and financial management sectors, across various industries. This is not only because of the global recognition that the certification holds, but also because it enables the pursuant to connect accounting concepts to their practical applications in finance.
The honing of skills in accounting and financial data analysis will the CMA certified professionals in making strategic business decisions.
Here are a few core features and advantages of the CMA certification:
Hence, for a moderate cost of about $2200 (approx. 1.6 lakh INR) and around 300 hours of study time to clear the CMA exam, getting this coveted certification is definitely a steal deal to make way for a six-figure salary. Not to mention the global recognition and a competitive edge that it brings along.