Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Building a Career in Strategic Management - Accounting

Strategic management accounting is a field of accounting that is concerned with developing and implementing strategies to increase the profitability of a business. This is an advanced field that combines advanced accounting, financial management and strategic management expertise. It is different from other areas of accounting as it focuses mainly on studying external business situations and non-financial information and analyzing how it can improve a company’s operations.

Strategic management in accounting
is a specialized subject and goes far beyond routine accounting functions, such as cost allocation, breakeven analysis or budgeting. It includes implementation of total quality management, six sigma and other tools and techniques to improve a company’s profitability. This is why companies prefer to employ professionals who are qualified and experienced in strategic management accounting and cost leadership strategies.

Competencies Required for Working as a Strategic Management Accounting Professional

Strategic management accounting professionals must be competent in
  • Developing appropriate strategies to improve a company’s profitability
  • Executing strategic decisions effectively
  • Working on the latest technology applications in the areas of management information systems, such as ERP
  • Accomplishing the three strategic objectives of cost, time and quality
  • Analyzing the financial implications of business strategies
  • Making use of non-financial information which is crucial for company’s profitability
  • Assisting top management in entering new markets
  • Determining the need to drop specific business lines to improve profitability
  • Identifying and cutting wasteful business operations
In addition, they must be able to challenge the traditional mindset of a company and assist them in developing new processes for their accounting function.

Becoming Strategic Management Accounting Professional

Becoming a strategic management accounting professional requires much more than just basic accounting understanding. It is a highly specialized field; and thus, professionals are expected to have undergone an advanced course in strategic accounting and possess relevant work experience.

Numerous colleges in Canada offer graduate-level strategic management programs in accounting. However, students need to be very careful while choosing their college.  A program is worth considering if it
  • Covers all key areas of management and accounting
  • Focuses on developing managerial and leadership skills
  • Offers hands-on the latest technology applications
  • Is delivered by a faculty with solid academic and professional backgrounds
  • Provides graduates with CGA transfer (level 4)
  • Offers good employment prospects
Centennial College’s strategic management program fulfills all these criteria and prepares graduates for successful careers in today’s complex business environment.

Program Content

The one-year program runs through two semesters and covers a wide range of subjects, including Advanced Managerial Accounting, Accounting Theory and Policy, Advanced Taxation, Information Systems for Business Management, Operations Management for Products and Services, Advanced Auditing, Advanced Financial Management, Crafting and Executing Strategy, Ethics and Stakeholder Management and Contemporary Organizational Behavior.

Who Can Apply for this Program?

This program is open for all the candidates who have completed a three-year college diploma or university degree in any discipline. Individuals with two-year college diploma or a partial university degree may also be eligible to apply. However, they must have a minimum two years of work experience relevant to this program. All applicants are required to submit a proof of English proficiency.

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