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How to become a Management Accountant

A man working at a desk

If you’re great with numbers, ambitious, and have excellent communication skills, then Management Accounting might be the role for you. Here’s a quick guide to the role and what you need to qualify.

What does a Management Accountant do?

A Management Accountant is in charge of a company’s finances. They take overall responsibility for the accounts and look for ways to improve profitability.

They work for one company, rather than other accountants that can work for numerous companies. And they head up a team of other financial professionals.

So if you were a Management Accountant, your daily tasks could be:

  • Analysing performance
  • Identifying and managing risk
  • Tracking spending and setting budgets
  • Preparing accounts
  • Financial forecasting
  • Formulating business strategies

Why choose this career path?

This role can truly open doors for you. As a management accountant you are in demand, across the world.

And as someone who is helping to make serious business and financial decisions for a company, you can truly make a difference. It’s a job where your input counts, and you get a detailed look at a company’s inner workings.

The role can also be seen as a stepping stone. Many management accountants move on to become a finance director, management consultant or even CEO*.

What qualifications do I need?

It’s not essential to have a degree, but you will need to have a professional qualification such as ACA or ACCA. Even AAT can pave the way to a career as a Management Accountant.

To become a Chartered Management Accountant you will need to take the CIMA qualification.

What skills do I need?

You will need to have a high level of numeracy amongst other vital skills, such as:

  • Commercial awareness and an interest in business
  • Excellent oral communication skills to explain complex financial information in a clear manner
  • Excellent written communication skills for reporting and analysis
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work as, and lead, a team
  • Logical thinking, as well as analytical and problem solving skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and to very tight deadlines

This list isn’t exhaustive but gives you a good idea of what you need to be able to do to become a successful Management Accountant.

What could I earn as a Management Accountant?

Starting out you could earn around £28,000**, rising to around £33,000 after passing professional exams. The average salary in the UK is around £40-£45,000 but this can change depending on location, size of the company, experience and qualifications. As a senior Management Accountant you could be earning around £65,000.


Check out our CIMA page for information about becoming a Chartered Management Accountant, and what you’ll need to do to become qualified.