CIMA Ireland is offering a discount for the CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting to Engineers Ireland members. Here, engineer Mick O’Callaghan outlines how the course helped him in the running of his business
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Author: Mick O’Callaghan FCMA, CGMA, BE Electrical Engineering, MTech in Advanced Manufacturing Technology, director, Value Added Consulting

New PictureMick O’Callaghan’s first postgraduate roles were as an engineer based on Shell Oil Refinery in Holland, as well as working on a large gas-fired power station in Saudi Arabia. After 10 years working in these technical roles, his career had progressed through working across the globe on multi-million investment projects to becoming engineering and quality assurance manager at a publicly quoted US multinational. In 1998, O’Callaghan established Value Added Consulting, a specialist training and consulting business.

O’Callaghan has also used his unique combination of training skills and business experience to deliver training to CIMA students on behalf of a variety of CIMA providers.

Why did you choose to study CIMA?

In my role as engineering and quality assurance manager, I became involved in strategic planning. Although I could contribute technically to strategic discussions, I found that I lacked the skills in finance and strategic planning, and therefore my career could only go so far. It was apparent that I needed to extend my knowledge and skills base in order to bring a financial and strategic perspective to the business and add value to my offering.

I looked at the options and after some consideration chose to study management accounting with CIMA. The advantage CIMA offered was that it was not exclusively financially focused, but rather offered an insight in finance, strategy and other areas of management so it was more business oriented rather than concentrating on one particular aspect. As an engineer, the numeracy elements of CIMA naturally appealed to me

How did your studies help with your work?

Studying CIMA and applying the learning in real-time situations gave me the confidence and the knowledge to set up my own business, Value Added Consulting. One lesson that CIMA really emphasises is that there isn’t just one solution to a problem. Every situation is different and, therefore, every solution must relate to the particular issues of the context. This is at the core of my business offering, which provides training and consulting solutions to a range of different companies in a wide variety of sectors. I come across new issues and situations almost every day and my CIMA foundation provides me with a knowledge framework to relate to all of these different contexts in a coherent and strategic way.

How important is CPD?

In a sector as competitive as the training and consulting sector, where the business environment is constantly evolving, CPD plays a key role. CIMA places great emphasis on CPD and it is, in my view, essential for anybody who is focussed on their business. New technologies, economic conditions and new investment initiatives provide both opportunities and challenges to our business and being equipped and aware of those determine your ability to react and understand the potential for you and your clients.

How has being CIMA qualified benefitted your career?

Being a CIMA qualified management accountant is an important asset which is globally recognised by businesses. It immediately sets the individual apart as a high calibre executive who can add value to a business. I have the dual ability to identify and execute the strategic initiatives that are most likely to ensure the long term sustainability of both my business and my clients businesses. CIMA membership also has the advantage of providing access to a network of professionals and provides a forum to source and exchange advice on range of management and strategic business issues.

Would you encourage others to study CIMA?

In one word: ‘Yes.’

Finance for engineers – 25% discount for Engineers Ireland members

CIMA Ireland has aligned for the delivery of the CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting to Engineers Ireland members. The CIMA Business Accounting course is ideal for those new to the world of finance, providing an understanding of the uses of accounting information in planning, controlling and decision making. All Engineers Ireland members are exempt from one of the five modules – business mathematics (C03). Members with additional relevant qualifications may also be eligible for more exemptions.

Phone: 01 6430400.
Email: cima.ireland@cimaglobal.com
Web: www.cimaglobal.com/engineersireland

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  Author: Mick O’Callaghan FCMA, CGMA, BE Electrical Engineering, MTech in Advanced Manufacturing Technology, director, Value Added Consulting Mick O’Callaghan’s first postgraduate roles were as an engineer based on Shell Oil Refinery in Holland, as well as working on a large gas-fired power station in Saudi Arabia. After 10 years working...