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  • 1.  Starting an Accountin/Bookkeeping business

    Posted 02-27-2024 02:10 AM

    Hi Community,

    I'm looking to get input from other accountants/CMAs that have been able to start their own accounting business and attract clients. Would you be able to share your experience on how you've reached out and let businesses know about the services you offer? I've seen bookkeepers and CPAs market themselves, but haven't really seen individuals who are CMAs, market themselves as outsourcable subject matter experts, perhaps I've been looking in the wrong places, but this should hopefully be the right spot! 

    Thanks in advance!

    Diane Mabaso CMA
    Portland OR
    United States

  • 2.  RE: Starting an Accountin/Bookkeeping business
    Best Answer

    Posted 02-28-2024 12:26 PM


    I was a CMA for 9 years before I earned my CPA license. My biggest hurdle has been general public knowledge. No one has heard about Certified Management Accountants. I hadn't heard of them when my college advisor suggested I pursue it as my primary designation. Everyone I have talked with as potential clients kept saying "Oh, I think I need a CPA to do my cost analysis/budget/forecast/etc. for me." I explained to them the difference between a CPA and CMA. My latest comparison is going to a general practioner doctor for a heart problem rather than a cardiologist. Both are medical doctors and both know about the heart. One has specialized training and experience regarding just the heart. A CPA is the GP while the CMA is the cardiologist.

    I honestly earned my CPA just so I can tell those clients, "Oh, yes, I'm a CPA also." My signature shows CMA first and CPA second. I've been doing what you have been doing for 15 years now. If you have more questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to me directly. david.belnap@...

    David Belnap, CMA, CSCA, CPA
    Belnap Accounting
    Hollywood FL
    United States

  • 3.  RE: Starting an Accountin/Bookkeeping business

    Posted 03-04-2024 09:20 AM

    Hi David,

    The explanation you've given is excellent and I couldn't have said it better myself! Regards, Ron Hoover

    Ronald Hoover CPA
    Ronald B. Hoover CPA LLC
    Stow OH
    United States

  • 4.  RE: Starting an Accountin/Bookkeeping business

    Posted 03-05-2024 12:48 AM

    I find it amazing that not only the public but often times business people and HR are so uninformed and have no idea what a CMA is. It seems that IMA is doing a lot to increase awareness but little progress is being made. 

    I really like David's comparison. Excellent!

    Gunter Wallner CMA, CIA

  • 5.  RE: Starting an Accountin/Bookkeeping business

    Posted 03-03-2024 10:23 PM

    When in public service, I would recommend the pursuit of CPA, which serves external reporting, thus has broad application & is highly in demand. CMA serves internal customers, does managerial reporting, is in pursuit of operational excellence. To answer your question directly: CMA credentials can be marketed as operational consulting credentials. However, it is less known, understood & this more challenging to market.

    Janina Staniszewski CMA, CPA
    Trirx Pharmaceutical Services
    Overland Park KS
    United States