Insights into Cost and Management Accountant (CMA) as Profession
- As the name suggests, Cost and Management Accountant (CMA) assists the management of a company in effective resource management and cost savings.
- With the globalization of economic activity, all companies have recognized the potential of Cost and Management Accounting profession. Therefore, this career is on high growth.
- Unlike (CA) Chartered Accountancy, articleship is not necessary for CMA.
- Cost and Management Accountant can start earning at a very early age. On acquiring the qualification, the student has to enrol as an Associate in CMA institute Kolkata and can start their own practice without waiting for job opportunities.
- Cost of education is fairly negligible in comparison to several other educations.
- On proving yourself, CMA can earn on each cost audit nearly INR 50,000/-. It purely depends on how best you are maintaining your clientele and how best you are giving audit reports in fixed timelines.
Name – Rajashree Dabke
Profession – Cost and Management Accountant at Port Trust of India
Age – 51
Gender – Female
City – Visakhapatnam
Industry – Port and Shipping
Where have you been born and raised?
I was born in Nagpur and completed my Graduation in Commerce from Nagpur University with 10th Ranking in the University.
My family is a nuclear and patriotic family, which believes in the value system and Live and Let Live concept.
Who all had the most influence on you and how?
My parents had the most influence on me while growing up. They imbibed the virtues of honesty, hard-work, self-belief as well as insisted on following the path of Dharma without fear.
Please give us a summary of your career.
I have work experience of almost 27 years in Port Sector. In last 27 years, I have worked in various positions in several major Ports of India, wherein I dealt in Financial matters of the Port Sector. I largely dealt in policy decisions/matters.
Presently, I am Deputy Chief Accounts Officer in Visakhapatnam Port Trust, a Major Port of India under the administrative control of Ministry of Shipping, Govt. of India.
Which institutes are best for the education/training of this profession?
There is only one institute that awards CMA (Cost and Management Accountant) in India and that is Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICAI).
ICAI is a premier professional body of Management Accountants in the country. It is a statutory body under the administrative jurisdiction of Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India. It is also a member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), The Confederation of Asian and Pacific Accountants (CAPA) as well as The South Asian Federation of Accountants (SAFA).
What are the costs associated with the education/training of Cost and Management Accountant?
It cost very less to study for CMA as the approximately cost in total is INR 41,000/- only. This is besides the cost of tuitions or coaching institutes you enrol yourself to study for the exams. It also doesn’t include the living expenses.
How does one enter in this profession?
To get a CMA certificate, there are essentially three main steps.
- Prelim – Students, as early as in their 12th class, can appear for CMA Prelim. Once selected, you have to clear CMA Inter.
- CMA Inter – you have 2 groups of 4 subjects each, a total of 8 subjects that you have to clear. Students, who are confident, can attempt both the groups at the same time after obtaining coaching completion certificate. Pass mark in each paper is 40 and qualifying aggregate for each group should be more than 200 marks.
- CMA Final – After completing CMA Inter, students have to clear 2 groups each containing 4 papers. Like in Inter, students can either attempt each group separately or both at a time.
Also students who are in graduation can directly appear for CMA Inter without appearing for Prelims.
What is the range of remuneration one can expect when starting out in your line of career & industry?
The following table depicts the appropriate payout structure per month.
5 years of experience – 50,000 INR per month
10 years of experience – 1.2 Lakhs INR per month
15 years of experience – 2–3 Lakhs INR per month
20 years of experience – 3–5 Lakhs INR per month
Please describe your work.
I assist management in taking the financial decisions. This includes handling all the finance related matters such as Planning and Costing Systems, Budgeting, Accounting, Tariff fixation, Investment decisions, Portfolio management, Tendering, Taxation, Audit, Financial Reporting, Information and Control Systems, Fund Management, Pricing Planning, et. al.
What are some of the positives, which would encourage someone to consider this career/job?
- Not many professions allow you to pursue education so early in life. For CMA, one can start preparing in 11th/12th itself. The students can also pursue it along with their commerce graduation.
- Unlike Chartered Accountancy, articleship is not necessary for CMA.
- CMA can start working and earning at a very early age. On acquiring the qualification, the student has to enrol as an Associate in CMA institute Kolkata and can start their own practice without waiting for job opportunities.
- On proving yourselves, Cost and Management Accountant can earn on each cost audit nearly INR 50,000/-. Though it purely depends on how best you are maintaining your clientele and how best you are giving audit reports in fixed timelines.
What are some of the challenges that you would want someone to be aware of when considering this career/job?
This profession requires constant upgradation of knowledge and Government policies as changes happen very frequently. Therefore, one needs to have analytical ability, financial prudence and quest for knowledge to do well in this profession.
Even a small mistake can’t be made, because many decisions of the company are largely dependent on the work of Cost and Management Accountants. Interpreting information and data related to business activities and translating them to guide the core management into taking the right decisions is a challenge.
What are the relevant trends/skills/technologies that are currently commanding premium in your job profile?
Trends: Channel and customer profitability reporting, integration of enterprise performance with management methods, financial forecasts, applying analytics. Shift of the Finance function from beyond financial reporting to dealing with and reporting non-financial information.
Specialized knowledge on business strategy and value creation and dealing volatility and complexity of the business.
Skill: Business and Financial Acumen, Commercial Mind set, Predictive Analytical ability with Strong Problem-Solving capacity, Perseverance, Fluency in written and verbal communication etc.
Technologies: The latest software available for Security Analysis, Portfolio Management, Financial Management, Financial Management, Accounting models like SAP/ERP, knowledge of Excel are required to be learned and kept pace with.
What kind of person would be happy in your career?
People who enjoy taking calculated risk in decision making in the volatile environment. One who enjoys Economy, Finance, Share market etc. One, who has an analytical ability to study the economic trends, and market conditions; who are quantitative and number crunchers will enjoy this career.
Given another choice, what would you do differently as far as your professional selections are concerned?
If I am given a choice, I would want to try for IAS (Union Public Service Commission).
What would be your advice to students or professionals who are just starting their journey on a path similar to yours?
Students of CMA should have awareness of economy, statutes which are impacting the economy. Also they should read newspaper on daily basis and be proficient in technology and related software. They should also improve their communication skills.
Contributing Writer – Vivek Daddala