The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) has updated its Code of Ethics with the aim of better helping finance professionals deal with ethics and independence challenges in a modern digital business world.

The updated code will come into effect 1 January 2020. Key changes to the code include:

  • A revised conceptual framework to help finance professionals identify, assess and address ethical threats, and ensure that they remain independent and objective when exercising professional judgement.
  • New material emphasising the importance of capturing and understanding relevant facts and circumstances when exercising professional judgment.
  • Strengthened provisions relating to the preparation and presentation of information to ensure effective governance, and a new section relating to pressure to breach the profession’s core principles.
  • Revised provisions relating to offering and accepting of inducements, including gifts, hospitality and entertainment, to ensure finance professionals exhibit the highest standards of ethical behaviour at all times.
  • Greater transparency for CIMA members about when CIMA will take action to enforce breaches.
  •  A new structure and format based on the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants’ (IESBA) revised and restructured code.

CIMA chief executive of management accounting Andrew Harding said: “At a time where new and emerging technologies are having a profound impact on the way we do business, public trust in business is eroding faster than ever. With the growing strategic importance of the finance function, it is essential that our profession continues to uphold the highest ethical standards and guide their organisations to do business responsibly.

“As trusted strategic advisors, management accountants use their skills and competencies to combine financial and non-financial data, translate this information into meaningful and actionable business insights that enable business leaders to make better decisions. This includes a responsibility to act ethically, foster ethical management processes and a duty to act in the public interest. The introduction of the updated Code reinforces those values and supports all members to face the professional challenges of our digital world.”