Certified management accountants (CMAs) make $102,500 annually on average. This is $30,000 higher than the average salary for an accountant, as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor.
The CMA certification is more valuable than ever, and the sooner you decide to get it, the sooner you can begin earning more. Let’s look at what exactly makes it a desirable designation.
Certified Management Accountants specialize in managerial accounting. They provide the “why” behind the numbers, manage project proposals, and advise on the potential for future profits.
Want to learn more about becoming a Certified Management Accountant?
The Gleim CMA Exam Guide explains everything you need to know about the CMA Exam and how to get started with it today.
Becoming a CMA advances your career by opening up new, upper-level positions. After all, making cost-minded decisions is a valuable asset in any industry.
Each year, the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) conducts a global salary survey to discover trends in compensation and other useful information for members. IMA is the largest management accounting association in the world, and its certification branch, the Institute of Certified Management Accountants (ICMA), is responsible for the development, administration, and grading of the CMA exam.
We’ve combed through the 2019 survey results and compiled the most important data for you to know.
Data from the IMA 2019 Global Salary Survey shows that the average Certified Management Accountant (CMA) base salary in the Americas is $102,500 (compared to $65,000 globally). Among non-CMAs, median base salary is $80,000 in the Americas and $30,000 globally. All said, the average base CMA salary in the Americas is ~28% greater than that of a non-CMA, and the average CMA salary, globally, is ~117% greater than that of a non-CMA.
Only 37% of respondents this year hold the CMA, down 19% from last year, and the pool of respondents is much younger on average than in past surveys. This explains the slight drop in numbers across the board (CMAs and more experienced accountants earn higher salaries). Even if those figures are slightly suppressed by less experienced accountants, they are great news for anyone interested in the profession. Earning the CMA remains one of the best professional development options available to accountants, and the benefits extend beyond just a higher salary.
CMA salary in the Americas
The median base salary for CMAs in the Americas is $102,500, and the median for non-CMAs is $80,000. This region continues to maintain the highest salaries overall by a large margin, but it did experience a 10% decrease since last year. Median total compensation for CMAs in the Americas is as high as $115,000.
CMA salary in Asia
The median base salary for CMAs in Asia is $28,710, and the median for non-CMAs is $20,000. Asia has experienced relatively little change in compensation (a 5% decrease).
CMA salary in Europe
The median base salary for CMAs in Europe is $70,000, and the median for non-CMAs is $50,000. Of every region, Europe saw the largest increase (17.4%) in survey respondents age 20-29 this year.
CMA salary in the Middle East and Africa
The median base salary for CMAs in the Middle East and Africa is $30,000, and the median for non-CMAs is $12,250. The Middle East and Africa region saw the greatest decline in median earnings going into 2019, at 30%.
Compensation for CMAs has fluctuated over the past several years. Globally, average compensation has recently decreased, but it is important to remember a few things when looking at these numbers, including:
The numbers reflect large regions, not necessarily individual countries.
The countries within these regions may not see the same changes as the regions as a whole. A good example is China, whose numbers did hold despite a decrease in Asia’s overall compensation.
Large numbers of younger CMAs have an impact on reported figures.
Younger CMAs are responding to the Global Salary Survey in greater numbers—almost 70% of respondents to the 2019 IMA Global Salary Survey were under 40 years old, which significantly impacts the calculation of average salaries. Younger professionals typically make less due to being in the early stages of their careers.
Median compensation decreased roughly twice as much for non-CMAs than for CMAs, which goes to show that the value of the CMA designation remains high despite fluctuations in pay.
Regardless of fluctuations, CMAs make more than non-CMAs at all levels of management.
IMA’s 2018 and 2019 Global Salary Surveys have shown that, across the board, the gap in compensation is getting bigger every year.
Globally, the gap between women’s and men’s compensation is virtually nonexistent, which is especially significant since women’s salaries were only 90% of men’s during the previous year.
About 60% of all CMAs report having received a raise within the last year. In the Americas, this percentage was highest, at 67%, and it was lowest in the Middle East and Africa, at about 49%. Globally, the median annual raise for CMAs has increased.
CMAs worldwide received about 84% of their total compensation via their base salary. The remainder of their compensation came in the form of bonuses, profit sharing, overtime, and other benefits.
Are you ready to see why Gleim is the most widely used CMA Review?
Try our Premium CMA Review System for free by visiting our CMA Demo.
You’ll get unlimited access to an entire study unit for free!
Becoming a CMA not only offers great salary benefits, it also improves other aspects of your life and career. Do not underestimate these factors—your career is more than just how much you make.
The smartest route to earning your CMA, of course, is to use the best CMA review! Gleim CMA has been helping candidates pass for nearly 40 years, and our course has trained more CMAs than any other. When you get Gleim, you get everything you need to pass on the first try with confidence. Before you begin, though, you’ll want to know everything about the CMA exam, and you can find it all in our comprehensive (and free!) CMA Exam Guide.