CGMA Compass taking Management Accounting to the next level

I have been privileged to have been working with CGMA and taking part in the Global Management Accounting Principles:

1. Self-assessment Tool Pilot Community

2: Pioneer Advocates

CGMA Compass followed on from the worlds first management accounting standard.

BSI, the business standards company, has published PAS 1919:2016 Guide to management accounting principles. The guide which was sponsored by CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) also saw collaborative input from such organizations as Environment Agency, Fujitsu, NHS and Siemens.

Designed as a best-practice guide to management accounting, defining what “good” looks like, PAS 1919 provides organizations with a framework to support their decision making and contribute to overall improved performance and sustained success.

The finance function is key to unlocking value across the organisation to drive performance and success.  Yet business leaders are under increasing pressure. Quality decision making is essential but impulse often takes the place of insight.

As your finance function transforms itself to deal with challenges and harness opportunities, how do you measure success?

Underpinned by the Global Management Accounting Principles©, the CGMA Compass is an online self-assessment diagnostic that enables organisations to gain a 360 degree view of the strengths and weaknesses of the finance function to drive effectiveness.

This is achieved by assessing performance against the 14 management accounting practice areas outlined in the Principles:

  • Cost transformation and management
  • External reporting
  • Financial strategy
  • Internal audit
  • Internal control
  • Investment appraisal
  • Pricing, discount and product decision
  • Project management
  • Regulatory adherence and compliance
  • Resource management
  • Risk management
  • Strategic tax management
  • Treasure and tax management
  • Management and budgetary control

Analysis is provided in the form of heat maps – presenting rich data in an easy to read format which highlights aspects of high performance alongside those where improvements can be made.

With all of this insight you will:

  • Build confidence and trust by increasing business resilience, preserving value.
  • Join the dots and understand how things are being done in practice.
  • Shape the conversations which drive good decisions.
  • Put finance at the heart of business decision-making.
  • Build a shared understanding of levers for value creation, transform information into insight.
  • Better manage risk and capitalise on new opportunities

Don’t miss Samantha Louis, Association of International Certified Professional Accountants presenting the CGMA Compass Webinar on 30th October at 12.30!

Webinar sign-up:

CGMA Compass web information:

You can also get further details from

I fully endorse and recommend CGMA Compass, its a first class management tool

You need to read – Business Accountant Magazine!


This is a fantastic free online magazine packed with useful advice for accountants and business owners.

It’s the second edition published by the Association of UK Accountants

It’s been written in jargon free way to help you get a better understanding of accounting and tax rules, this issue is 30 pages.

The articles are written by CIMA CGMA Accountants in Practice.

Take a look and see what you think


Why your SME needs a CGMA CFO!

Flying Superhero

Many businesses require the skills of professionals to oversee and direct financial operations. These professionals are referred to CFOs, chief financial officers, or financial directors (FD).

So what should your Chief Financial Officer be doing for your business…..

1. The CFO should be able to look into to future to see what the future financial needs of the business will be
2. He/She should negotiate funding facilities to ensure the business can manage its cash flow needs
3. The CFO should be able to foresee the future tax consequences and risks of decisions
4. He/She should help the business to achieve the best possible credit scores
5. Identify ways to reduce costs and improve profitability
6. Understand the business owners objective and focus the business on achieving those objectives
7. Ensure financial and regulatory compliance
8. Ensure accurate and timely reporting of management information
9. Evaluate growth opportunities
10. Apply corporate governance

What key questions should you regularly ask your CFO…..

1. What is our cash cycle and how can we improve it – Cash Cycle Blog
2. What Key Performance Indicators should we use and what are they telling us – KPI Blog
3. How can we improve profitability – 15 ways to improve profitability Blog
4. What is our Business Plan and is it the right plan – How can you create a Business Plan
5. Can we reduce Overheads – 10 creative ways to reduce overheads Blog

Many smaller businesses and SME’s can’t afford a Full Time (or even in some cases a Part Time CFO or FD) but they need help with:
• Business Plans
• Budgeting and Forecasting
• Cash Flow Management
• Buy or Rent decisions
• Capital Investment Appraisal
• Accounting Procedures and Systems
• Business Strategy
• Busines Funding and Investment
• KPI’s

Expert Advice Fotolia

Virtual FD’s fill this gap because:
1. You only pay for what you need
2. There is no employment contract
3. It provides access to higher level of expertise (in theory)

But be careful who you choose. There is no law preventing anyone from calling themselves an accountant, and as a result small businesses are unknowingly paying someone without the necessary skills to handle their finances and help their business grow.

So what experience does your accountant have to show that they have the skills to be your Virtual FD?

I am sure that in theory they have the technical skills but is that enough?
With the exception of CGMA (CIMA) accountants many accountants in practice have never worked in business let alone been a Finance Director!

I happen to think that time served experience as a CFO does make a difference because it greatly improves your insight and skills.

Would you get on a plane with a Pilot who in theory knew how to fly but had never actually piloted a plane before?

When you choose a Virtual FD you are trusting them with the success of your business. Choose wisely!

CIMA operates a Masters degree standard scheme of qualifying examinations for prospective members. It is active in promoting local education, training and management development operations, the promotion of new techniques through its research foundation and the dissemination of management accounting practices through publications and other media related activities. WIKIPEDIA

Chartered Global Management Accountant™ (CGMA®) is the global designation for management accountants. It’s powered by the resources and expertise of AICPA and CIMA, two of the world’s leading accounting organisations.