Your November coverage of the Chartered Global Management Accountant accreditation, in addition to your, "AICPA, CIMA Plan Push for New Management Credential," (AccoutingToday.com, October 18) sheds light on the critical role management accountants play in today's competitive global marketplace. What this article fails to share is that there are, in fact, gaps with regard to the testing, assessment and measurement of critical skills during the first three years of this venture.

While we support efforts by the AICPA and CIMA to reinforce the importance of management accounting, the absence of proper testing and assessment during the three-year grandfathering period - in which CPAs who meet certain criteria will be granted access to the program without any assessment at all (including a "free," six-month auto enrollment period) - is troubling. Could those who are given the CGMA designation without management accounting testing truly be called "trusted financial navigators" for companies?

In contrast, IMA believes the most credible means for certifying competency in management accounting is by studying and passing a rigorous testing program. To date, the Institute of Certified Management Accountants (ICMA), the certification affiliate of IMA, has issued more than 35,000 CMA certificates to professionals who have earned their credential by passing a rigorous multi-part exam.

IMA continues to support the growing field of management accounting and hopes that all accounting associations keep sight of the ultimate mission, which is to responsibly serve individuals, the profession and society by assuring the skills of management accountants are verified and fully aligned with the needs of today's businesses.

Sincerely,

Jeffrey C. Thomson, CMA

President & CEO IMA

Montvale, N.J.

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