Designing Strategic Cost Systems: How to Unleash the Power by Lianabel Oliver

By Lianabel Oliver

Delivering a multidisciplinary roadmap for the layout, improvement, and implementation of a strategic price process, this publication indicates how you can layout a value approach to develop into a more suitable decision-making software and a resource of aggressive virtue for the association. It describes tips on how to constitution a value structures layout venture and speak about the problems that are supposed to be addressed in advance from a administration, operations, and costing viewpoint.

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Key Attribute 2: Cost Systems Should Be User Friendly My best analogy for this attribute is Windows versus MS-DOS computer operating systems. For those of you old enough to remember a world 26 What Constitutes a Strategic Cost System? before Windows, you will recall that MS-DOS was cumbersome and required the user to invest an enormous amount of time in learning the commands to make the system perform to the user’s expectations. Apple Computer’s Macintosh and, later, Microsoft’s Windows revolutionized the personal computer industry by providing a user interface that was easy to understand and use.

An effective cost system requires that all six elements work in an integrated fashion to provide information that is relevant, timely, and accurate. 1 that people are at the center of all six elements. Although I have not included people as an element of a strategic 24 What Constitutes a Strategic Cost System? cost system, it is the people who design, operate, and use the system on a day-to-day basis who determine how well it works as a strategic decisionmaking tool. These people are found in all areas of the organization, from the accountants who record and analyze financial data to the frontline employees who are entering detailed production or customer transactions.

The review process should be done at least once a year. It does not have to be a major undertaking. However, it should be sufficiently thorough to ensure that the cost system is accurately capturing the costs of your operations, encouraging the desired employee behavior, and meeting the needs of its users. SUMMARY The redesign of a cost system is a major undertaking that requires a significant amount of time and resources. Before embarking on a project of this magnitude, you should evaluate the information needs of the organization and where the current cost system is failing.

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