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IMA Opens Public Comment Period on Essential Management Accounting Competencies


Montvale, N.J., October 19, 2021IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants), the global association of accountants and financial professionals in business, has opened a public comment period on its exposure draft, “Essential Management Accounting Competencies for All Entry-Level Accountants,” which identifies the key management accounting skills needed by entry-level accountants in a changing world. The exposure draft was developed by the IMA Management Accounting Competency Task Force in response to new and emerging technologies, the increased importance of data analytics, and the changing role of the professional accountant. The draft identifies the necessary competencies and learning outcomes for entry-level accountants in the realm of management accounting and suggests course topics encompassing the essential competencies.

“The management accountant’s role is going through immense change, due to both technological advancements that are rapidly eliminating routine tasks and rising volumes of data combined with more sophisticated analytics,” said Raef Lawson, PhD, CMA, CPA, IMA Research Foundation Committee Chair and Chair of the Task Force that compiled the draft. “Changes to the accounting curriculum at colleges and universities should reflect these developments, regardless of whether students are planning on entering public accounting, industry, or some other field of accounting. It’s crucial that they develop competencies in the areas of strategic management accounting and analysis; revenue, cost, and profitability management; technology, analytics and data management; and professional ethics.”

This draft was prepared by a core team with extensive experience in developing competency and implementation guidance for both universities and accounting associations (including IMA, the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA), Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada), and the International Accounting Education Standards Board (IAESB)). The initial recommendations developed by the Task Force, a group of IMA volunteer leaders, were reviewed by academic and practice review panels, and their feedback was incorporated in the recommendations contained within the draft.

The public comment period on the exposure draft will conclude on November 12, 2021. To read the full report and submit a comment, please visit IMA’s website. 

About IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants)

IMA® is one of the largest and most respected associations focused exclusively on advancing the management accounting profession. Globally, IMA supports the profession through research, the CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) and CSCA® (Certified in Strategy and Competitive Analysis) programs, continuing education, networking, and advocacy of the highest ethical business practices. Twice named Professional Body of the Year by The Accountant/International Accounting Bulletin, IMA has a global network of about 140,000 members in 150 countries and 350 professional and student chapters. Headquartered in Montvale, N.J., USA, IMA provides localized services through its four global regions: The Americas, Asia/Pacific, Europe and Middle East/India. For more information about IMA, please visit