The CIMA® Charter

The Charter from the CIMA® Institute, United States is the world’s most distinctive designation, embedding the double-edge of two powerful super-specializations in one qualification! An unmatched twin-qualification in the advanced areas of investment & management accounting, CIMA® is the most reliable proof of technical competence and acumen for complex analysis, strategic evaluation and reporting of opportunities and challenges, and modeling of investment and business management solutions. CIMA® prepares charter-holders for diverse and varied careers across industries and sectors. CIMA® charter-holders form a global community of specialists, whose craft and expertise extend much beyond traditional management accounting, auditing, cost accounting, financial accounting or financial analytics. The CIMA® Charter is a qualification for top professionals geared for performing in fluid and dynamic environment accentuated by diversity and multiplicity of markets, operating currencies and regulatory-regimes.

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For Careers in Global Organizations

CIMA® is for you if you want to get the power of twin specializations, and prepare for careers in global conglomerates, investment banks, top asset and wealth management firms and accounting KPOs among others. The unmatched CIMA® from United States equips you for driving up enterprise value, accelerating growth, strengthening competitiveness, managing business risks, and optimizing corporate governance.

CIMA® opens up top career opportunities in the most high-demand and advanced areas of Investment & management accounting in global organizations. Internationally, management accountants and specialists who manage investment accounts rub shoulders with CEOs and top managements. CIMA® charter-holders make finest career starts and find fastest and clearest tracks for roles such as Investment Heads, Portfolio Heads; Fund Managers; CFO, Treasury Chief and Finance Controller among others. For senior accounting and finance professionals planning for leadership roles, CIMA® is an essential qualification to have.

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Hunt in Pairs!

The Power of Two Specializations in One Qualification

Specializing in the investment & management accounting combination takes accounting professionals much beyond conventional financial accounting and auditing. The combination powers your professional attractiveness for boards and CXOs of organizations that seek to address challenges and opportunities impacting value for customers, investors and stakeholders at the same time. While the management accounting specialization equips you for directly impacting growth, profits and competitiveness of organizations; the investment accounting specialization puts you in a rarified league of professionals – with expertise in monitoring, tracking, analyzing and accounting the performance of investments made by organizations in a complex mesh of multiple national markets, regulatory environments and tax regimes.

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Chartered Investment & Management Accountant

No Accountant is Complete Without CIMA®

Unbeatably powerful in its coverage of investment & management accounting, CIMA® is truly exclusive as a qualification. CIMA® charter-holders are trusted worldwide for their promise and potential for teaming up with top management in driving up enterprise value, accelerating growth, strengthening competitiveness, managing business risks, and optimizing corporate governance in global conglomerates, investment banks, top asset and wealth management firms and accounting KPOs among others.

The CIMA® charter transforms you into a critical financial and strategic intellect for organizations that need well-informed and insightful financial and accounting expertise to drive business success and optimize value of their investments. Dunked deep into waves of internationalism and digital technologies, organizations cannot remain blind-sighted to the influence of accurate accounting information on their financial and strategic wisdom.

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CIMA qualification

Meet CIMA Charter-Holders

The Difference an Advanced Accounting Qualification Makes…

  • Manish Satnaliwala
  • Ted Elliott
  • Sasha
  • Blake Ryan
  • What is the CIMA® Charter?

    The CIMA® Charter is many things. It is a resolution that the CIMA Institute inspires accounting and finance professionals around the world to make to themselves to develop the right base of knowledge, skills and competencies in investment & management accounting.

    The CIMA® Charter is also a resolve of the CIMA Institute to continue carving out super-specialization areas from within Accounting.

    And finally, the CIMA® charter is the qualification, credential and designation that individuals earn after ensuring and proving that they meet the knowledge and competence pre-requisites of management accountants as well investment accountants - as enunciated in the CIMA® body of knowledge on investment & management accounting.

  • Who can Hold a CIMA® Charter?

    Any individual holding at least a Bachelor's degree from any nationally/ globally recognized institution or university can apply for obtaining the CIMA® charter. It is not compulsory for individuals to be working or have work-experience when they are applying for the CIMA® program.

    However, individuals having a professional certification in accounting or related areas from national or global certification bodies, or from professional membership associations can register via the fast track CIMA® Professional Pathway.

    Similarly, individuals with MBA or Master's level qualification in accounting or finance or related disciplines from nationally or globally recognized universities and business schools can register via the fast track CIMA® Master's pathway .

  • What Does the CIMA® Charter Mean for Professionals?

    The CIMA® journey develops professionals, managers and leaders into exemplars of practice in investment & management accounting. Holding the CIMA® charter implies obtaining the prestigious CIMA® designation and credential after qualifying the prescribed CIMA® exams. It's an assurance to the industry of a proven flair, readiness, and potential for excelling across diverse roles. CIMA® charter-holders directly impact enterprise performance, success, growth, expansion, competitiveness and value. CIMA® is a proof of readiness for the challenges of diverse markets; complex investment climates; globalized supply chains; conflicting tax-regimes and fluctuating currencies.

  • What Does the CIMA® Charter Mean for Business?

    For globalized industries and enterprises, the CIMA® Charter is a regimen for developing professional and leadership competencies in managing their present and future through insightful deployment of business, market, financial and industry data and information. The CIMA® body of knowledge guides organizations on how to develop investment & management accounting as an internal force to change the way their leaders take decisions, and embrace it as an essential strategic skill for managers. CIMA® charter-holders promise global organizations a significant improvement in decision-making quality, speed and impact.


    Becoming a CIMA® charter-holder implies earning the CIMA® qualification by meeting the prescribed candidacy requirements and passing the prescribed CIMA® exams. If you have a Master’s or specialized accounting or finance qualification, you can register for the CIMA® program through the Professional or Master’s Pathway track in which you just take one, unified CIMA® pathway exam. If your last degree is a Bachelor’s, you can register through the Standard route, in which you take two exams for each of the two CIMA® levels. Around 80% of CIMA® program registrants manage to complete their program within 6-9 months.

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Count on CIMA®

  • 70,000+ New Positions

    For investment & management accountants open in global companies

  • US$ 140,000

    Average annual compensation for MBAs with Management accounting qualification

  • 160,000+ New Jobs

    In Managerial Accounting will be created by 2024

  • US$ 102,000

    The median annual salary for managerial accountants in international companies in 2020

  • Up to 35%

    More compensation is earned by certified management accountants than their non-certified peers

  • 23%

    Worldwide growth in demand for investment & management accounting jobs by 2028

  • US$ 135,000

    Average annual compensation for accounting professionals qualified in investment & management accounting

  • US$ 4.25 billion

    Worldwide Cloud Accounting Services market by 2028

Disclaimer: Analysis of leading national and global surveys and research studies on accounting jobs, salaries and markets by the CIMA Institute. Includes the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS); Morgan Stanley, Robert Walter’s Group and PayScale among others.

Through Your Career

Valid for Life

Your CIMA® Stays With You Through Your Career

The CIMA® designation never expires, and just needs to be refreshed. Your CIMA® designation stays in good standing during the first three years after the award. The fourth year onward, CIMA® designation holders need to attend an online CIMA® Review Webinar and pay a nominal maintenance fee of US$ 150.00 every year (or pay US$ 650.00 for life-time maintenance). The Review Webinar is a single-session program featuring expert-talks and presentations on the latest on regulations, trends, best practices, and emerging techniques in various dimensions of investment & management accounting.

CIMA program

20 Knowledge Themes

Complete Investment & Management Accounting

The two-level CIMA® program establishes investment & management accounting as a unique twin-specialization - distinct and far advanced than traditional management accounting. Besides business strategy, valuation, international business and enterprise performance management, the CIMA® program also accords attention to data science, artificial intelligence and blockchain uses in accounting. Divided into 20 themes, the core of CIMA® includes concepts, frameworks and techniques in addition to themes on critical investment and managerial decision areas.


Individuals obtaining the CIMA® Charter become professional members. The CIMA® program fee covers the CIMA® membership for up to 10 years from the date of award of the CIMA® designation. Institutions and organizations formally associated with CIMA Institute, or those on the elite CIMA® Ace and CIMA® Accord lists get the opportunity of becoming institutional members without charge. Member institutions get special CIMA® privileges for their students and member-professionals including registration in fast track Master’s and Professional pathways. CIMA® professional membership benefits include a myCIMA dashboard account for life; complimentary entry to the CIMA Institute networking events; subscriptions to exclusive, member-only publications, and special fee for professionals referred by CIMA® members.

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CIMA Membership Card

Earn the CIMA® Charter Faster!

If your academic or professional background has pre-oriented you to accounting, financial management and business, you take only one, unified CIMA® pathway exam, and get exam-exemptions in up to 9 of the 20 standard CIMA® knowledge themes - speeding up your CIMA® program journey.

If you Hold a Professional Certification in Accounting or Finance…

… or management accounting, cost accounting; risk management or company secretaryship, you can apply for the CIMA® program along the Professional Pathway on a special fee that is lower than the standard CIMA® program fee. You get exam-exemptions in 9 of the 20 standard modules, reducing your study effort! Not to be missed, a special CIMA® professional pathway facility is open until October 30, 2021 for individuals from certain countries who have not been able to complete their certification program because of delayed exams due to the Covid outbreak. The Special professional pathway is open for Brazil, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Ghana, Guyana, Hongkong, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Namibia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Uganda, Rwanda, Vietnam and Zambia.

If you hold an MBA or a Master’s in Finance or Accounting

... from an accredited institution, or you are pursuing a Master’s qualification like MBA/ MS/ M.Sc. in a finance or accounting from an institution on the CIMA® Ace list, you can apply for the CIMA® charter along the Master’s Pathway on a special fee. Institutions on the CIMA® Ace list are nationally or globally acclaimed universities and b-school accredited by AACSB or EQUIS or by any other international accreditation body. If approved for Master’s Pathway, you get to qualify CIMA® program in one, single exam instead of the standard two, and get exam-exemptions in 8 of the 20 standard CIMA® modules, making it possible for you to complete the CIMA® program within six months or even earlier! Alumni of institutions on the CIMA® Institutional Educator Network can also register through the Master’s Pathway.


“While evaluating top-up courses and programs for our students of Master’s programs in accounting and finance, I realized that the globalization impacts on company performance and value still do not find enough attention in traditional finance, business and accounting curricula. CIMA® program journey corrects this oversight, and creates a new agenda for learning for future professionals of business accounting and finance. I believe, obtaining the CIMA® charter is a must for all students majoring in business, accounting or finance.”

Dr. Donald S. White  Dean, College of Business and Accounting, Grambling State University

  • Candidate Guide

    CIMA® Candidate Guide

    Meant exclusively for individuals registered for the CIMA® program. The CIMA® Candidate Guide contains detailed information on all the processes, policies and guidelines in force that candidates and members must necessarily know. The Candidate Guide informs on CIMA® exams, study planning, CIMA® Charter continuation and CIMA® membership, besides tables and notes on coverage, learning-topics and knowledge specifications.

  • CIMA® Body of Knowledge

    The CIMA® Body of Knowledge is an exclusive resource for registered CIMA® program candidates and CIMA® members. The first ever resource on standards of knowledge and skills in investment & management accounting, the CIMA® BoK defines specifically the areas and topics of international management are required to develop knowledge and skills, and prescribes the knowledge levels in each of these areas.

    Body of Knowledge
  • Quarterly

    The CIMA® Monitor

    The CIMA® Monitor is a one-of-its kind update on trends, advances and best practices in investment & management accounting worldwide. Exclusively published for registered CIMA® program candidates and CIMA® members, the Monitor is a 360-degree view of the state of management accounting in the world today, and features essays, articles and cases written by experts from global accounting & finance community.

  • The Global Report

    Published annually, The Global Report is the only journal dedicated to monitoring and analyzing the emerging sciences, tools, techniques and standards in various areas and functions of investment & management accounting. The Global Report is for CIMA® members and registered CIMA® program candidates, and features articles, insights, analysis and studies authored by research scholars, professors, consulting experts and accounting practice leaders.

    Global Report
  • Annual Publication


    Insights is a very special annual publication, exclusively meant for CIMA® members and registered CIMA® program candidates. Featuring insightful stories, examples and cases on best practices in investment & management accounting from different parts of the world, Insights is put together by a high-power team of research scholars, professors, consulting experts and practice leaders from the investment & management accounting community.

The CIMA® List of Academic Institutions with the Potential to Become Benchmarks in Investment & Management Accounting.

CIMA Institute's Ace Listing

For Acclaimed Academic Institutions

The CIMA® Ace program is a CIMA Institute initiative to recognize the potential for academic excellence in investment & management accounting. More than 250 nationally and internationally known institutions including universities, business schools, and specialist finance and accounting colleges are currently recognized as CIMA® Aces today, and the list continues to grow.

Students and alumni of CIMA® Ace institutions are offered exclusive Ace privileges including a special CIMA® fee and the facility to register along the CIMA® Master’s Pathway (students), that speeds up the CIMA® program journey through exam-exemptions in select modules. Institutions included on the CIMA® Ace list get the permission to add the moniker “A CIMA® Accredited Institution/ Department”, and the opportunity to become CIMA Institute's official educators if they wish.

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CIMA® Educator Program

The CIMA® community is establishing investment & management accounting as an elite business function around the world, creating a demand for training and education in the discipline. Leading finance and accounting coaching institutes in various countries are adding to the official CIMA® Educator network. Universities and business schools currently not included in the CIMA® Ace Network can also apply to become CIMA® authorized Educators. They can offer exciting programs in the highly specialized discipline of investment & management accounting and also exam-preparatory training in their geography to professionals registered in the CIMA® program. Internal and external students and alumni of business management, accounting and finance programs of CIMA® Educator institutions get to earn the CIMA® Charter right on the campus at a special CIMA® program fee. Acclaimed institutions that have been recognized under the CIMA® Ace program do not require to apply, as they stand pre-qualified automatically as potential CIMA® Institutional Educators. Their account can be activated upon a simple request.

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CIMA Institutes's Accord Listing

For Professional Bodies and Associations

More than 24 national, regional and global professional associations and bodies in accounting and finance figure in the CIMA® Accord list today. The CIMA® Accord program is a CIMA Institute initiative to recognize potential for promoting investment & management accounting into an independent business function, profession and practice among global organizations.

A special committee selects professional bodies for inclusion in the CIMA® Accord list, with no application required to be made. CIMA® Accord listees are also eligible for a complimentary CIMA® institutional membership, which gives them an opportunity to be more actively involved in promoting professional excellence in investment & management accounting. Members of professional bodies included in the CIMA® Accord list are offered exclusive privileges, including a special CIMA® fee and the facility to register along the CIMA® Professional Pathway, which speeds up the CIMA® program journey through exam exemptions in select modules.

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CIMA® Networking Events 2020-21

Please note that since all events scheduled during 2020 have been rescheduled for 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the original 2021 events calendar may undergo many changes.

Apply for CIMA® qualification now

CIMA® is the world’s only and the most powerful qualification in investment & management accounting today! It takes only a few minutes to apply for the CIMA® program and just a few months to complete it. The program includes an all-inclusive package covering the exam, up to 10-year CIMA Institute's membership, and life-long dashboard access. Earn the pride of belonging to the league of the best!