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Management Accounting Role

In: Business and Management

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The Role of Management Accounting in the Organization
The purpose of management accounting in the organization is to support competitive decision making by collecting, processing, and communicating information that helps management plan, control, and evaluate business processes and company strategy. The interesting thing about management accounting is that it is rare to find an individual within a company with the title of “management accountant.” Often many individuals function as accountants within the organization, but these individuals typically operate as financial accountants, costs accountants, tax accountants, or internal auditors. However, the ability to develop and use good management accounting (which covers a lot more ground than the product costing done by cost accountants) is actually an important ability for many individuals, including finance professionals, operational and marketing managers, top-level executives, and information technologists.

Generally, in a very large company, each division has a top accountant called the controller, and much of the management accounting that is done in these divisions comes under the leadership of the controller. On the other hand, the controller usually reports to the vice president of finance for the division who, in turn, reports to the division’s president and/or overall chief financial officer (CFO). All of these individuals are responsible for the flow of good accounting information that supports the planning, control, and evaluation work that takes place within the organization.

Don’t make the mistake of believing that the career path of an accountant is limited to auditing and tax work. Spend some time at the AICPA Accounting career web site at What are the basic career paths that an accountant can follow? Be sure to review some of the work...

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