An introduction to Management Accounting: Budgeting
This unit is about the use of budgeting for planning, coordinating and authorising the activities of an organisation and for controlling costs. The unit provides skills and knowledge to improve the performance of an organisation by setting targets, constructing achievable plans and monitoring results.
Students will develop a range of skills within the context of planning and control. These include management accounting, statistical analysis, written communication and variance analysis. The application of standard costing and its links to budgeting is also included, although the topic is covered in detail in the Management Accounting: Decision and Control unit.
Students will also develop their business awareness as part of this unit. In particular, they will gain an elementary understanding of production planning (efficiency, adjusting for changing inventory levels, material control, staff planning, plant scheduling) and aspects of marketing (competition, promotion, product life cycle and so on). In this context, performance measures are used to set targets and monitor performance. These are not high-level financial indicators such as return on net assets, as learned in other units, but detailed measures relevant to specific budgets. As an example, average hourly labour rate would be relevant to the control of a direct labour cost budget.
Budgeting could be described as the art of the possible. Budgets are constructed from forecasts and plans. Forecasts relate to external factors, over which management may have very little influence, while plans relate to the organisation’s activities and must be managed.
This is a mandatory unit. Its content has links with Management Accounting: Decision and Control, but the application here is specifically to budgeting.
Learning outcomes for Management Accounting: Budgeting
1. Prepare forecasts of income and expenditure
2. Prepare budgets
3. Demonstrate how budgeting can improve organisational performance
4. Report budgetary information to management in a clear and appropriate format
For more information about the specific details of Management Accounting: Budgeting, please click here.
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