Management accountants handle record keeping and budget analysis for the businesses that employ them. Usually these professionals are responsible for assembling the annual budget, cost management and in some cases, asset management. This job is a senior position that puts the accountant in an executive team role, helping to develop long range strategy for sales and new product development.
Management accountants provide professional analyses of financial issues that are key points in the executive decision making process. They organize and explain financial factors within the business that often dictate the prudent business decision or option. In companies that produce reports to investors or regulatory agencies the management accountant often prepares the report and develops the documentation to support it.
Some management accountants with a bachelors degree have joined a business as staff accountant and grown with the business into a management role. More often, for senior accounting positions employers would like to see a masters degree in business administration or in accounting or in economics.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics there were about 73,000 management accountants working in 2007. However many smaller business that have a management accountant refer to the job as controller. There is a certification program available through the Institute of Management Accountants.
The projection for increases in this job category is excellent. The number of accounting jobs in general is expected to grow by 18% over the decade 2006 - 2016. The increasing reporting requirements for businesses and financial institutions should help feed the increase in opportunities for management accountants.
2007 Mean Wage $29.73 $61,850
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics