Management accountants increasingly confident in the job market


By Samantha White

In the annual Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) salary survey, management accountants show high levels of satisfaction with their salaries, with 75% of them reporting that they were satisfied or extremely satisfied with their current salary.

Furthermore, 90% expect a pay increase over the next year. The majority (53%) expected the award would be between 1% and 3.9%

In the UK, the average salary, including bonuses, for CIMA members is £67,960 ($107,027), representing a 1.9% increase over the 2013 figure.

The results of the survey can be explored in more detail using the salary calculator available here. Average finance salaries can be viewed according to country, industry, job role, and level.

The survey of approximately 6,200 CIMA members from 24 countries also provides insights into the interests and aspirations of management accountants around the world. Here are some key findings:  

  • What motivates employees. Not surprisingly, financial reward was a primary motivator in their current job for 48% of respondents. However, a wide range of non-financial factors play a key role in keeping employees happy. Flexibility and work/life balance was amongst the top three priorities for 46%, followed by a good working environment (43%). The scope of the role and a challenging workload were also important, cited by 38% and 37% of respondents, respectively.  
  • Why people look for a new role. The survey also indicates increasing confidence in the job market amongst CIMA members, with 54% of respondents planning to find a new role over the next two years. Financial reward was the most important reason for moving for 61%, while the scope of the role on offer ranked highly for 44%, and prospects for promotion for 33%. A challenging workload was an enticement for 29%. 
  • Australia and the US are preferred destinations. A move abroad is in the cards for 9% of members. Top destinations for respondents looking to relocate from the UK were Australia (44%), the US (38%), and Canada (18%). Australia was also the most popular destination amongst those working outside the UK, followed by the UK, US, and Singapore. The primary motivations for those considering relocation include improved quality of life, cited by 54% of respondents, experiencing a different culture (50%), and for friends and family reasons (31%).
  • Developing soft skills is a priority. Sixty-nine per cent of members said they were planning to learn new skills in the coming year. Leadership came atop the to-do list, with 39% of members seeking to develop that skillset. Strategic planning and implementation was a priority for 34% of those surveyed, followed by persuading and influencing (29%). Building skills for developing others (26%) and project management (22%) were also popular goals.

   2013  2014 
 Australia  AUD $145,971  AUD $155,368 ($184,542)
 Ireland  €89,132  €90,610 ($112,690)
 Malaysia  RM199,240  RM208,003 ($59,485)
 Sri Lanka  Rs240,123*  Rs248,563* ($1,894)
 South Africa  R906,943  R910,919 ($67,735)
 UK  £66,710  £67,960 ($106,269)
 USA  $193,465  $224,541
* Amounts are monthly.

Source: CIMA.

Samantha White (swhite@aicpa.org) is a CGMA Magazine senior editor.