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ACCA P5 TUITION & EXAM SUPPORT NOTES

Mahmood Reza
FRSA, MCMI, ATT, FCCA, DMS, PGCE, BSc (Hons)

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ACCA P5 EXAM SUPPORT NOTES: CONTENTS PAGE


Page Number
3

Introduction

ACCA P5 exam pass rates

Examiners guidance, approach, syllabus change& exam

Exam structure

Strategic planning and control

Purpose of strategy and types

Overview of planning

Mission

11

Aims and Objectives

12

SWOT

14

Product portfolios

14

BCG Matrix

15

Ansoff Matrix

16

Stakeholder analysis

17

Benchmarking

18

Government intervention and regulation

19

Risk and uncertainty

21

PESTLE

21

Porter: industry analysis - the five forces

22

Budgeting

27

ABC, ABB,

32

BPR

34

Responsibility Accounting Systems

32

Human resource management

33

Vrooms Expectancy Theory

Agency theory

Financial performance indicators

35

Net present value

38

Internal rate of return

38

EPS

39

Divisionalisation and transfer pricing

44

Performance measures
o

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Return on investment (ROI)

45
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Residual income

46

Economic value added

49

Activity one: risk

32

Pricing

21

Corporate Failure

52

Establishing a performance Management System

55

Criteria for designing performance indicators

57

Types of performance measures

58

Performance models

60

Performance Pyramid, Lynch and Cross (1991)

60

Balanced scorecard

62
Table of potential scorecard measures

64

Performance Prism

65

Fitzgerald & Moon Building Block

66

Target costing

70

Total Quality Management (TQM)

72

Activity three: performance measures

39

Performance management & evaluation

42

LIST OF RELEVANT ACCA ARTICLES

74

Activity one: solution

75

Activity two: solution

76

Activity three: solution

78

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INTRODUCTION
These ACCA P5 exam support notes are based on my experience, not only in respect of
teaching ACCA P5 since its introduction, but over 30 years of teaching business and
management. These notes are not meant to be a comprehensive overview of the syllabus but
focus on selected parts
The notes are provided to supplement existing texts and focus on areas that, in my experience,
students find more challenging. Any feedback regarding the notes (positive or negative) would
be greatly welcomed.
ACCA P5, in common with the other option papers does not enjoy significantly high pass rates.
However, people do pass the exam; a structured and focused approach to studying is highly
recommended, as well reading around the subject.
It is worth remembering that are an abundant level of support resources available to assist
you in passing your exams. However, unless you have a photographic memory you will need
to apply conventional techniques to passing your exams, e.g. question practice, question
practice, question practice you get the picture.
These notes are to aid and assist your study programme and to reflect student requirements,
any suggestions for future improvements are greatly welcomed.
The strategic planning process was examined in detail in the P3 paper. InP5 the focus is more
on the performance management aspects of strategic planning and the role of strategic
management accounting.

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EXAMINER'S GUIDANCE AND REPORTS


There was a change of examiner for the exam diet in December 2010; the examiner has
written a number of articles in Student Accountant explaining his approach, and with the slight
change in exam format for the June 2013 exam an updated article was published.
This article is available, with many other useful resources on the ACCA website, link being
http://www.accaglobal.com/gb/en/student/acca-qual-student-journey/qual-resource/accaqualification.html
The examiner felt that it would be helpful to try to give candidates a consolidated article on his
approach to the exam, the style of questions and the skills that will be tested in Paper
P5, Advanced Performance Management. The new exam format was illustrated with a new
Pilot Paper to give students a feel for what to expect. Older questions are still relevant as the
syllabus topics are not altering materially.
The article considered the syllabus and overall aims of the paper, how it relates to previous
papers and the format of the exam. It then summarised his advice about his approach to the
paper using suitable example questions from recent exams to illustrate points.
The current ACCA Qualification syllabus was first examined in December 2007; a review of
the pass rates since the new examiner is shown below.
Dec 10
35

Jun 11
35

Dec 11
29

Jun 12
35

Dec 12
33

Jun 13
31

Dec 13
30

Jun 14
29

Dec 14
?

The ACCA Professional syllabuses were updated with effect from June 2011, these notes are
based on that syllabus and study guide for the June 2011 exam diet.

STRUCTURE OF THE EXAM PAPER


The exam comprises two sections. Section A includes one compulsory question worth 50
marks in total. As Section A is compulsory, candidates must not only attempt it in the exam,
but must also allocate an appropriate amount of time.
Section B contains three optional questions worth 25 marks each; candidates are required to
answer two of these questions.

EXAMINERS COMMENTS
This provides a useful insight into the general problems that students encounter and extracts
have been reproduced below. The original reports are freely available on ACCAs website.

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STRATEGIC PLANNING AND CONTROL


Johnson and Scholes 3 stage model of strategic planning is a useful framework for seeing
the bigger picture of performance management & strategic management accounting issues.
The term strategic management accounting refers to the full range of management
accounting practices used to provide a guide to the strategic direction of an organisation.

Strategic management accounting gives a financial dimension to strategic


management and control, providing information on the financial aspects of strategic
plans and planning financial aspects of their implementation.
It supports managers throughout the organisation in the task of managing the
organisation in the interests of all its stakeholders.
Strategic management accounting places an emphasis on using information from a
wide variety of internal and external sources in order to evaluate performance appraise
proposed projects and make decisions.
It focuses on the external environment, such as suppliers, customers, competitors and
the economy in general as much as on the organisation itself.
Strategic management accounting monitors performance in line with the organisations
strategic objectives in both financial and nonfinancial terms

OBJECTIVE OF STRATEGY
Primary objectives of profit seeking organisations
Maximising shareholder wealth
The traditional argument is that shareholders are the legal owners of a company and so their
interests should be prioritised. The objective of profit- seeking companies should thus be to
maximise shareholder wealth.
Theoretically shareholder value is best improved by increasing the present value of future long
term cash flows. In practice many companies translate this into a short term focus on profit.
Shareholders are generally concerned with the following:
Current earnings
Future earnings
Dividend policy
Relative risk of their investment.
All of these are concerned with financial performance.
The objective of wealth maximisation is normally broken down into three primary objectives:
To continue in existence (survival)
To maintain growth and development
To make a profit
Survival is the ultimate measure of success of a business. In order to survive in the long-term
a business must be financially successful. Without survival then obviously there will be no
fulfilment of other objectives.
Growth is generally seen as a sign of success, provided it is profitable, and usually results in
improvements in financial performance.
Profits and shareholder value
Rather than focusing on achieving higher profit levels, companies are under increasing
pressure to look at the long term value of the business. This is due to the following factors.
Research has suggested a poor correlation between shareholder return and profits.
Investors are increasingly looking at long term value.
Reported profits may not be comparable between companies.
While these issues have been known for some time, they have come into sharp focus due to
the performance of new technology/communications companies.

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Strategy
An effective competitive strategy takes offensive or defensive action in order to create a
defendable position against the myriad of forces. There are a number of possible approaches:

Positioning the firm so that its capabilities provide the best defence against the existing
array of competitive forces.

Influencing the balance of forces through strategic moves so as to improve the firms
relative position

If factors underlying the forces are going to change, selecting a strategy appropriate to
the new circumstances before rivals recognise the situation.

Generic Competitive Strategies


Porter identified three generic competitive strategies:
1. Overall Cost leadership
2. Differentiation
3. Focus
Cost Leader
You must be the cost leader. Being a cost leader is not enough.
You must achieve proximity in the bases of differentiation.
Differentiation
To be unique along some dimensions that are widely valued by buyers.
Price premium > Costs of differentiation
There can be more than one successful differentiation strategy in an industry
Focus
There must be a difference between the focus target market segment and the market.
The segment must be structurally attractive.
Three main strategies
i. Focus on short runs by investing in technology or methods that give
cheaper or quicker turnaround.
ii. Cost focus because the broadly targeted differentiator may be overperforming I.e. costs are too high.
iii. Differentiate focus because the broadly targeted competitors may not
be meeting the needs of the segment.
Generic Strategy & Value Drivers
The value drivers of shareholder value consist of six drivers. They are:
1. Sales Growth
2. Pretax profit margin
3. Tax rate
4. Incremental investment in working capital
5. Incremental investment in fixed assets

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6. The firms cost of capital


The three related to operations and their implementations in the business are as follows:
The two drivers not, in the first place, related to operations are:
Value Driver
Sales Growth

Operating Profit Margin

Cost Leadership Strategy

Differentiation Strategy

Competitive pricing

Premium pricing

Expand market share

Segment markets and grow


share

Achieve cost of scale for all


activities

Activities chosen to create


most cost-effective
differentiation

Improve rate of learning

Eliminate costs that do not


contribute to customer needs

JIT supply chain


Cut non-value adding costs
Working Capital investment

Minimise cash balance

Minimise cash balances

Minimise A/R

Link working capital policies


to differentiation

Minimise inventory

Making Choices
Having chosen a generic strategy it is vital to stick to it:

Failing to choose between generic strategies - getting stuck in the middle.

Cost reduction is not the same as cost advantage. Following a differentiation strategy
does not mean maintaining non-value-added costs.

Being both the cost leader and following a differentiation is possible if:
i.

Competition is stuck in the middle.

ii.

The firm has pioneered an important innovation

iii.

Cost leadership is heavily affected by market share.

Competitive Advantage
A competitive advantage is the ability of an organisation to be better at some action, or have
some asset, necessary for being more successful than the other participants in a market place.

Low unit cost.

Branded products.

Scale of Investment

Technology

Patents

Economies of scale.

Licence protection

Great knowledge, experience and competence.

Legal constraints.

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A strategic asset such as the ownership of a majority of the landing rights at a major hub
airport.

Rates of innovation greater than the competition.

Having one or other of these attributes does not turn it into a competitive advantage unless it
is used to create better value for the customer than the competition can produce.
Moreover these advantages have a habit of disappearing unless they are tended. Patents
have a fixed life and unless money is allocated to R & D to create new ones the advantage
will disappear. Low cost products may be superseded by technology and so on. For this
reason the strategic information provided must be forward looking rather than back ward
looking.
Competitive advantage then results from how successfully the firm implements its chosen
generic strategy and how, as a result, it creates value for its buyers. Value is what buyers are
willing to pay and superior value stems from offering lower prices than competitors for
equivalent benefits or for offering unique benefits that more than offset the higher price.
The fundamental basis of above-average performance in the long-run is sustainable
competitive advantage.
Anthony Levels of Control & Hierarchy

Overview of planning
Planning is to a large extent a continual activity; it should not be confused with the end
document(s) produced such as a strategic or business plan, budget or cash flow, these
documents are merely capturing in words and numbers the results of some clear thinking and
likely outcomes of an organisations business journey.
One of the primary purposes of planning is to demonstrate that we have considered and have
tried to understand the risks involved in our organisational journey, and that we have
considered how we may deal with those risks all with the primary objective of realising and
ultimately achieving our aspirations.

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Planning has to be based on solid foundations, solidity starts with our mission statement,
which helps our raison dtre, our calling card to the outside world. The mission statement
tells the world what are our aspirations are, how we hope to achieve them, and who will be
benefit from this. A mission statement is not a bland promotional tool; it needs to be simple,
concise and memorable. Shared mission, value & vision are the bedrock of arts organisations,
work/business cultures create the environment in which behaviour dysfunctional or
otherwise is created. Organisations are just another example of the family that we see &
experience in our personal lives
Mission statements help generate critical success factors (CSFs), CSFs are the cause of our
success, those areas in which we need to perform best if we are to achieve overall success
and ultimately achieve our objectives. For example, CSFs for a theatre company would
typically be audience numbers, audience satisfaction, effective marketing to attract audiences
and cost control. CSFs help us generate measures to monitor and manage the achievement
of those CSFs; these measures are also referred to as Key Performance Indicators
(KPIs). KPIs should normally be a blend of numbers (quantitative) and non-numbers
(qualitative). Targets can be set for these KPIs, and progress measured against these targets,
any variations against these targets prompts investigation and ultimately action taken to rectify
the situation.
There is a general rule of management that you cannot manage what you cannot measure;
we need clues/milestones to identify if we are progressing on our journey. Take the example
of an individual who decides that their aspiration (mission) is to lead a healthier life style; one
identified objective is to reduce their blood pressure to a certain level; a CSF is change of diet;
a KPI to monitor this is blood pressure. If we measure blood pressure against a pre-set target
and required blood pressure is not achieved then we can have a closer look at (say) life style
and then hopefully put this right.
In the example of the retailer quoted above, appropriate KPIs may be levels of occupancy,
ticket sales, customer feedback, repeat visits and spend against budget.
Within the planning process we need to consider the resources, both physical (tangible) and
non-physical (intangible). The ability of any business to perform effectively is determined by
the adequacy and suitability of those resources, whether those resources are physical,
intangible, financial or intellectual. A resource analysis needs to consider how resources are
managed, deployed and used. For example, the impact of an organisation having a good
reputation is minimised if it lacks the skills and expertise to exploit them effectively.
The primary aim of the SWOT analysis is to identify the extent to which the current strengths
and weaknesses are relevant to and capable of dealing with the changes taking place in the
business environment. If the strategic capability of an organisation is to be understood the
SWOT analysis is only considered useful if it is comparative, and not absolute to its
competitors or other organisations, i.e. examining strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and
threats relative to competitors.
The expressions Vision and Mission are used to describe aspects of organisational purpose.
They serve to explain the concept of organisational purpose in order that managers may better
understand and be able to apply it.
MISSION
A mission statement is a statement of the overriding direction and purpose of an organisation.
It is the foundation for any strategic plan and expresses its reason for being. A mission
statement is the foundation for the entire strategic planning process. It sets the standard to

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which the organisation aspires, now and in the future, and forces the Board members and staff
to align themselves around a specific agenda.
VISION
A statement of what the organisation will be, or be perceived to be. It often includes references
to products and services, customers, markets, employees, new technology and social
responsibility.
The term vision statement is used by some organisations instead as mission statement, vision
and/or value statements may also be developed alongside the mission statement.
AIMS
These normally flow from the mission statement and are subsequently used to develop
suitable organisational objectives. Organisational and strategic aims represent the link
between mission and objectives and act as a statement of intention. They tend to be positive
in nature and unquantifiable, unlike objectives.
OBJECTIVES
Objectives are statements of specific outcomes that are to be achieved, from the strategic to
operational levels. Objectives are developed and extended from an organisations mission
statement and goals; they can be stated in financial and non-financial terms. Conventional
wisdom is that unless objectives are SMART (Specific Measurable Attainable Relevant Time
Bound) then they are not helpful, however, some organisational objectives are important but
difficult to quantify or convert into measurable terms, such as to be the leader in ones field.
Milestones and indicators of achievements are essential to monitor progress of all objectives.
Rewards
What we can expect as a result of our efforts. Rewards can be either financial or non-financial.
In most instances a mix of both and non-financial rewards will be expected.
Values
Those things that we believe to be important, and if they were not met, or respected, would
cause us to be unhappy.
The Strategic Triangle

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Mission statement
A mission statement is a statement of the overriding direction and purpose of an organisation.
It is the foundation for any strategic plan and expresses its reason for being. A mission
statement is the foundation for the entire strategic planning process. It sets the standard to
which the organisation aspires, now and in the future, and forces the Board members and staff
to align them around a specific agenda.
The term vision statements are used by some organisations instead as mission statements,
vision and/or value statements may also be developed alongside the mission statement.
Aims
These normally flow from the mission statement and are subsequently used to develop
suitable organisational objectives. Organisational and strategic aims represent the link
between mission and objectives and act as a statement of intention. They tend to be positive
in nature and unquantifiable, unlike objectives.
Objectives
Objectives underpin all planning and strategic activities, and serve as the basis for
creating business policy and performance evaluation.
Organisations have objectives for the following reasons:
1. Objectives provide a direction for members of the organisation. Employees should know
what their organisation is aiming for so that their efforts can be in line with it.
2. Objectives provide a standard for performance. People know what is expected of them
and what standards they need to achieve in their own work.
3. Objectives provide a basis for planning and control for managers. Managers cannot make
any plans without objectives. If the organisation is not going anywhere in particular then there
is no need to control the activities of the employees. The organisation will become more of a
community and drop-in centre than a company which provides a product or services.
4. Objectives reduce uncertainty in decision making. It is very difficult for managers to take
decisions if they are not sure where the organisation is heading. If they understand that costs
are to be kept low as part of a short term goal, this will help them to decide on such matters
as how to respond to a supplier increasing their prices.
5.
Objectives help to develop commitment among employees to the activities of the
organisation. Employees often do not fully understand what is happening in their organisation
or why it is happening. Making the organisation objectives clear to all employees helps them
feel part of the organisation.
6. Objectives provide a basis from which to monitor achievements. When an organisation
has objectives, the members of the organisation have a direction to head for and they can
measure whether they have arrived, or how far yet they have to go.

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SMART objectives

Many writers have argued that objectives are not worthwhile unless they are capable of being
measured and achieved. This is the thinking behind the development of the SMART acronym
which argues that an objective is only genuine if it is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic
and Time-bounded.
To enable an organisation to fulfil its mission, the mission must be translated into long-term,
medium-term and detailed short-term objectives. Ultimately each individual or department
needs to know what is expected of him or it in the coming days and weeks ahead. Such
medium- and shorter-term targets need to be smart.
Groups and teams within organisations should have clearly defined and well communicated
objectives. Plans should be developed for the achievement of the objectives and the work
should be monitored to ascertain how far the objectives have been achieved. When changes
need to be made, all the team should be informed of the reasons and the nature of the change.
The objectives of every group or team in the organisation should be very clearly linked to the
organisation's mission. Once long and short term objectives have been decided upon, plans
will be drawn up for achieving them. These plans will include all functions or departments in
the organisation and the groups within them. For example:
Short term organisational goal to increase attendance by 5 per cent in 2014

Marketing team's goal to devise advertisements and sales promotions for each
production to create greater awareness

Production team's goal to show 3 new productions each year

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Other departments and teams will follow similar patterns of activity to enable them to meet the
short term goal. If one department or group does not pursue their goal, the organisational goal
will fail. The production department may not wish to work more hours which will be needed if
the new shows are to be successful, all the sales promotions and advertising campaigns will
have been a waste of money and effort.
Resource analysis
Strategic capability is the ability, or otherwise, of the organisation to pursue its chosen
strategy. The are a range of models and techniques used, all of which involve an examination
of the resources and internal features of the organisation.
The first technique used is a Resource Audit. It involves analysing the resources of the
organisation in the following categories:

Physical Assets - buildings, plant and equipment, vehicles

Financial Resources - funds available to the organisation

Human Resources - number of staff available

Intangibles - skills, know-how, relationships, reputation

Value Chain analysis


The next stage is to examine how effectively these resources are being used. This involves
using another analytical model developed by Porter, the Value Chain. The Value Chain
identifies how the activities of the organisation are co-ordinated to support its chosen basis for
competitive advantage. Value Chain Analysis consists of breaking the activities of
organisation down into the following categories:

Value Chain Analysis also forms the basis for identifying Core Competences. From the
activities identified above, management can determine what the organisation does better than
other organisations.
The issues raised by these analyses are carried forward to the SWOT analysis.

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SWOT
This is a strategic planning tool which summarises the key issues from the business
environment and the strategic capability of an organisation most likely to impact on strategy
development. This can be used as a basis against which to generate strategic options and
assess future courses of action.

STRENGTHS: What we are good at


WEAKNESSES: What we are not so good at
OPPORTUNITIES: Favourable events trends
THREATS: Unfavourable events trends

The primary aim is to identify the extent to which the current strengths and weaknesses are
relevant to and capable of dealing with the changes taking place in the business
environment. If the strategic capability of an organisation is to be understood the SWOT
analysis is only considered useful if it is comparative, and not absolute to its competitors or
other organisations, i.e. examining strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats relative
to competitors.
A SWOT analysis should help focus discussion on future choices and the extent to which an
organisation is capable of supporting these strategies. An effective SWOT should be limited
to four to five factors, focus on major and not marginal areas, be open and honest and have a
priority and emphasis
RATIONALE AND APPLICATION:
This is a strategic planning tool which summarises the key issues from the business
environment and the strategic capability of an organisation most likely to impact on strategy
development. This can be used as a basis against which to generate strategic options and
assess future courses of action.
The primary aim is to identify the extent to which the current strengths and weaknesses are
relevant to and capable of dealing with the changes taking place in the business environment.
If the strategic capability of an organisation is to be understood the SWOT analysis is only
considered useful if it is comparative, and not absolute to its competitors or other
organisations, i.e. examining strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats relative to
competitors.
A SWOT analysis should help focus discussion on future choices and the extent to which an
organisation is capable of supporting these strategies.
LIMITATIONS AND ERRORS OF APPLICATION
Beginning SWOT without defining a desired objective
Generating long lists of factors rather than considering what is necessary in achieving
Objectives
Confusing opportunities (external) with strengths (internal)
Confusing SWOT with potential strategies. SWOT describes conditions, strategies
define actions
Lack of prioritisation, focus and critical appraisal
Generalisation
EXAMPLES
Strengths and weaknesses
Resources: Physical and intangible
Customer care
Staff

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Quality
Brand strength
Range of cultural excellence music, theatre, heritage, crafts, etc
Good facilities

Opportunities and threats


Funding opportunities for participatory arts from Arts Council, Heritage Council
Market trends
Reputation declining
Promote, export and import excellence in culture
Celebration of minority cultures (travellers, asylum seekers, etc)
No National Cultural Strategy or Task Force
Local government and the public sector may not take up the new opportunities to
promote/advance culture in the county
Decline in volunteers
Focus of funding will remain on bricks and mortar rather than on the use of facilities
Lifestyle changes
Technology
Duplication of provision and competitor actions
PRODUCT PORTFOLIOS
Because of the inevitability of the eventual decline of all products and services, businesses
seek to reduce their exposure to the risk of a product decline by maintaining a portfolio of
products.
A balanced portfolio will contain products at various stages of the product life cycle.
Conglomerates will seek to minimise the risks found in individual industries by holding
investments in a range of industries.
There are various tools and techniques for analysing a product or Business Unit investment,
portfolio. The most widely used of these is the Boston Consulting Group Matrix, often referred
to either as the Boston Box or the BCG Matrix. This framework allows the product portfolio to
be identified in terms of market share and market growth. Products/ services are placed in
the matrix and identified as question marks, stars, cash cows and dogs.

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BCG MATRIX
High
Stars

Question
Marks

Cash Cows

Dogs

Market
Growth

Low

High

Low
Market Share
(Relative to biggest competitor)

ANSOFF PRODUCT MATRIX


Apart from competitive advantage and entry barriers the company strategy will also include its
decisions on which products to sell in which markets- the so-called product/market decision.
This decision is often illustrated by the Ansoff matrix, called after Igor Ansoff who originated it
in the 1960s. The matrix plots markets against products giving in each cell the type of strategic
decision.

Existing Markets
Existing Products

New Products

New Markets

Market
Penetration

Existing product
led strategy

Exisiting
customer strategy

Diversification

A market penetration strategy is one where the company strategy is to increase its market
share in an existing market with current products. This is particularly successful at developing
super-profits when the market is growing strongly. The key strategic information required is
that on the market, its volumes and prices, by customer segment.
A market development strategy is one where the company seeks to increase its profitability
by selling its existing products to new customers (markets) it has never sold in before. This is
most successful when it is based on the most profitable existing products. The strategic
information required here is the direct profit contribution by unit and an investment strategy
based on incremental/opportunity costing based on future outcomes.
A product development strategy is based on selling new products to existing customers.
Clearly the strategy is most successful when the customers who are approached are those

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that are the most profitable to the firm. This will require a soundly based customer profitability
information system.
The diversification strategy requires the company to sell new products to new customers. Here
the management accounting system must be able to clearly identify the competitive advantage
by which the company is going to create its super-profit. Sadly the evidence is that this is not
only the most risky strategy but also one which is frequently fails.
STAKEHOLDER ANALYSIS
Stakeholders are normally seen as individuals or groups that are affected by organisations
activities, these consisting of providers of finance, managers, employees, competitors,
government, clients and suppliers.
It is important to conduct a Stakeholder Analysis, as the most powerful stakeholders are the
ones who ultimately determine the purpose and direction of the organisation. It may be easy
to assume that the owners of an organisation as the most powerful stakeholders, however,
this is often not the case and so the leader in an organisation should have a clear view of
where the most powerful influences are likely to come from.
Stakeholder Analysis is a process that involves the following stages:

Identify - who are the stakeholders?


Assess and rank - which stakeholders have the most power or influence over the
organisation?
Decide criteria - what are the stakeholders expectations?
Decide actions - are we meeting the stakeholders expectations? If not, what should
we do?
Assess performance - are our actions on generating the appropriate outcomes, or
should we change?

There is often a conflict between differing stakeholder requirements and aspirations; part of
the planning process involves the consideration of stakeholder requirements, power, influence
and ambition. One way to help manage stakeholders is by the use of Mendelows Matrix.
Stakeholder power
A. Minimal effort;
B. Keep informed;

Low

High

Low

High

Probability of exercising
power/level of interest

C. Keep satisfied;
D. Key players.

Mapping of stakeholders emphasises


How each stakeholder group wishes to 'force' their expectations on the organisations goals
and selection of strategies
Whether stakeholders have the power and influence to do so

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LIMITATIONS AND ERRORS OF APPLICATION


Underestimating the level of interest of a stakeholder group, who may frustrate the strategy
Selecting strategies skewed to one stakeholder group
Generic description of stakeholder groups
The concept of power being misunderstood: power is where stakeholder expectations
dominate and/or compromise strategic development
Ideally, a Stakeholder Analysis should be performed regularly or even continuously, since
the relevant stakeholders, their power and relationships may quickly change
The lack of constructive co operation and dialogue with stakeholder
BENCHMARKING
Benchmarking is the practice of measuring an organisations products or services against best
practice; the primary objective is to improve processes or activities. Through benchmarking,
organisations learn about their own practices and procedures, and the best practices of others.
Benchmarking enables them to identify where they fall short of current best practice and
determine action programmes to help then match and surpass it.
Benchmarking originated in the USA in the 1970s, pioneered by Rank Xerox and was
exported to Europe and the UK in the 1980s. A number of commercial, public sector and not
for profit organisations have successfully embraced the technique, and it is a popular and
effective management process.
Any activity that can be measured can also be benchmarked. However this is neither feasible
nor practical. The starting point for any benchmarking exercise is to determine the key
performance areas; those are the areas that are critical to the organisation, operationally and
strategically. They should focus on those areas that (a) tie up most of the resources; (b)
significantly improve the relationship with their client groups; (c) impact on the viability of the
organisation. For example a charitable organisation that relies on grant aid as its main source
of income might benchmark fund raising activities.
Once the key performance areas have been decided upon an organisation must then set the
key standards and variables to measure, these are commonly known as key performance
indicators (KPIs). Having defined the benchmarks the hunt is on for information to establish
the benchmark performance. There are four types of benchmarking
Internal: this is done within an organisation arid generally between closely related
divisions, plants or operations. This is an easy way to start benchmarking, but is limited
to internal criteria only
Functional: this is a comparison of performance and procedures between similar
functions, but in different organisations and industries. It is more likely than internal
benchmarking to generate benefits to the specific function, but it is unlikely to give wide
benefits throughout the organisation
Competitive: thisfocuses on direct competitors within the same industry and with
specific comparable business operations, or on indirect competitors in related
industries with complementary business operations. There can be practical difficulties
in achieving this.
Generic: thisis undertaken with external companies in different industries that
represent the "best-in-class" for particular aspects of the selected business operations.
Organisations then need to specify programmes and actions to close the gap. Having
measured ones actual performance and compared it with some form of target, benchmarking
moves from simple measurement through to performance improvements. Many organisations
forget this stage and therefore miss the real benefit of benchmarking. It is essential that
programmes and actions are implemented and that ongoing performance is monitored.

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Successful and effective benchmarking requires commitment and support from the board and
senior management. Managers need to be as specific as possible when identifying areas to
benchmark. For example, a company that wishes to benchmark customer service needs to
decide what specific aspect of customer service needs to be examined. Customer service
encompasses a diverse range of activities, such as dealing with enquiries, handling
disappointed customers, issuing refunds and taking payments. Each of these activities is
different, each with its own thought processes, techniques and controls.
Once the best practices have been identified, the benchmarking team collects the data,
analyses it, and then plots their performance against best practice to help identify improvement
opportunities.
Finally the team decides what is needed to adapt the best practices to suit their own particular
circumstances, this will a re-evaluation and re-design of existing procedures and approaches.
A cost-benefit exercise will usually be carried out and an implementation timetable with
priorities is established.
Government intervention and regulation
Introduction
The government can also take specific measures to regulate businesses through competition
policies, ecological policies and business assistance policies.
Competition Policies
Competition policies ensure that market failures are avoided. Government particularly seek to
regulate private markets. Competition policies are introduced to:

Reduce company domination (Monopolies)


Control prices and profits
Investigate mergers (Against the public interest)
Investigate restrictive practices (Prevent development of anti-competitive practices)

Green Policies
Green (Ecological) policies may not directly benefit the organisation but rather the environment
and
society.
They
include
external
environmental
costs
occurring
from production or consumption. The Government policies include:

Polluter pays principle (Tax on environmental damaging practices)


Subsidies (Encourage reducing pollution)
Legislation (Regulation governing waste disposal and emissions)

Business Assistance Policies


The Government also has aid policies to assist businesses in the economy in particular small
businesses. These include:

Grants for depressed areas /official aid schemes


Enterprise initiatives

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RISK AND UNCERTAINTY


Risk management is the process of managing your organisation's exposure to potential
liabilities. It gives managers, staff, clients, the board and other stakeholders the confidence to
pursue their mission without the fear of legal action or harm, and approaches risk in a
structured and calculated manner, rather than being haphazard.
Risk consists of three elements, namely choice, likelihood and consequence. Some choice
is needed in the situation, if there is no choice, a manager does not have a risky situation a
rather a bounded one beyond the manager's control; Likelihood for some level of uncertainty;
and some unwanted consequence must exist in one or more of the choices available to the
manager.
Decisions under uncertainty are effectively where
Outcomes are known
Associated probabilities are unknown
Decisions under risk are effectively where
Outcomes are known
Associated probabilities are known
A number of techniques exist for decision making under uncertainty, the more popular being
contingency tables and its associated interpretation:
Contingency Table
This is used for decisions made under uncertainty; it identifies & records all payoffs where
action affects outcomes.
Maximin
This maximises the smallest pay-off, it is indicative of a pessimistic and Risk-averting
approach
Maximax
This has the highest maximum pay-off, it is indicative of an optimistic approach, albeit with the
risk of loss to low returns
Minimax regret
This minimises the maximum possible regret and limits the potential opportunity loss. Regret
is seen as the pay-off lost v. not pursuing optimal action
Expected Values (EV)
This is used where decisions subject to risk
EV = Total of probabilities of outcome returns
ACTIVITY ONE
A retailer needs to decide how many kilos of fruit he needs to buy from the market and has
assessed the possible daily demand as 60, 100, 125 or 175 kg
He can buy quantities of 50, 100, 150 or 200 kg at a price of $4 per 10 kg. The selling price
is $1 per kg with any unsold apples being scrapped.
Required
a)

Construct a contingency table

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b)

c)

How many kilos should be bought if the following approach were adopted?
v
Maximin
v
Maximax
v
Regret
Calculate expected contribution (EV)

PESTEL
One of the key features that differentiated strategic management accounting from traditional
management accounting is the external focus. By looking at the organisations competitive
position we will be concentrating on this external focus
The business environment can be thought of as comprising the wider macro-environment and
the competitive (operating) environment

Economic

Substitutes
Suppliers
Customers
Political

Your
Organisation

Social
Entrants

Stakeholders
Competitors

Macro
Environment

Technological

Competitive
Environment

PESTEL ANALYSIS (MACRO ENVIRONMENT)


The figure above shows the range of environmental influences. It is useful to identify what
macro environmental factors are affecting an organisation and then to consider which of these
are most important (a) at present, (b) in the future. This is known as a PESTEL analysis, i.e.
an assessment of how Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Ecological and Legal factors
impact, or are likely to impact, on your company.
A mere listing of PESTEL influences has little value, it is important to identify the key
opportunities and threats facing the company (a) at present, (b) in the future and how these
are, in effect drivers for change. A PESTEL analysis should also examine the differential
impact of these macro environmental influences by asking how they affect different companies
differently. Some form of impact analysis and scenario planning is especially useful to explore
different possible futures. This exercise allows what if questions to be explored.

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PORTER: INDUSTRY ANALYSIS - THE FIVE FORCES


The factors that determine the returns that are possible in an industry are known as the Five
Forces. This approach to analysis was developed by Prof. Michael Porter (Competitive
Strategy, 1980) initially as an investors tool. An industry is a group of firms producing products
that are close substitutes for each other. According to Porter five forces determine industry
structure:
1. Buyer Power
2. Threat of substitutes
3. Supplier Power
4. Rivalry
5. Barriers to Exit and Entry.
Competition in an industry continually works to drive down the rate of return towards the
competitive floor rate of return.

Buyer Power
Buyer power is the ability of the buyer to determine the price at which they will buy irrespective
of the decisions of the firm.
A group of buyers is powerful if for example a buyer purchases large amounts relative
to the sellers total sales.
If the product bought represents a significant portion of the buyers total purchases the
buyer will tend to shop around for lower prices.
If the products are standard and undifferentiated the buyer will have more power over
prices.
If the buyer has few switching costs it will not be locked into a particular seller.
If the buyer has low profitability it will have to press for low prices.
If the product is unimportant to the quality of the buyers products or services.

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If the buyer can exercise significant power over which products its customers purchase
as in large retail stores.

Substitute Products
Firms in one industry are also competing with firms in another that produce substitute
products. Substitutes limit returns in an industry by setting a ceiling on the prices the industry
can charge. The more attractive the price-performance of alternatives the firmer the lid is on
industry pricing.
Substitute products that need to be closely watched are those with improving priceperformance ratios where the industry that produces them is more profitable than yours.
Supplier Power
Profitable suppliers can squeeze profitability out of an industry if that industry cannot recoup
the cost of higher priced supplies in prices of its own products. The conditions making
suppliers powerful are:

It is concentrated with few firms


It does not have to contend with other substitute products for sale to the industry.
The industry is not an important customer.
The suppliers product is an important input to the industry.
The supplier group as built up switching costs

Rivalry
Rivalry takes the form of price competition, advertising battles, product introductions,
increased customer service, improvements to warranties and so on. Price competition can
leave the whole industry worse off while advertising battles may increase demand and hence
wealth of firms. Intense rivalry is the result of a number of factors:
Numerous or equally balanced competitors.
Slow industry growth
High fixed or storage costs. The significant cost here is fixed cost relative to valueadded.
Lack of differentiation or switching costs.
Capacity augmented in large increments
Diverse competitors
High strategic stakes
High barriers to exit. Exit barriers can be economic, strategic and emotional. They
consist of specialised assets, fixed costs of exit, strategic interrelationships,
identification with the business, loyalty to the workforce, fear for ones own career,
government denial or discouragement of exit and so on.
Threats of Entry
New entrants to an industry bring new capacity, the need to gain market share and they can
bring substantial resources. The threat of entry depends on the strength of the barriers to
entry:
Economies of scale. If these are large then the new entrant has to come in on a large
scale. However these economies of scale must be real. If they are not, as Xerox
discovered when Japanese entrants started following the expiry of patents, the new
entrant may enter at a lower price than the incumbents are manufacturing for. Scale
economies can vary by function, such as selling, or by operation. For example there
are large economies of scale in manufacturing television colour tubes but not in cabinet
making or assembly.
Product differentiation leads to brand identities and customer loyalties.
Capital requirements

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Switching costs.
Access to distribution channels which may be difficult if they are controlled by the
industry.
Cost disadvantages to the entrant, not brought about by scale, as a result of proprietary
technology, favourable access to materials, favourable locations, experience curve
effects
Expected retaliations
The entrant will have costs of entry and if the industry price is insufficient to allow him
to recoup these - on other words it is below the Entry Deterring Price - he will not
enter. Where however the industry price is significantly above these then new entrants
will tend to bring the price down to it.

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BUDGETING
Budgets have multiple functions, namely
Planning
Management produce detailed plans for implementation
Coordination
Actions of different parts of organisation are brought together
Communication
Everyone is informed of the plans and policies; top management communicates to
lower level management
Motivation
This influences managerial behaviour, individuals motivated to perform in line with
objectives. This can encourage inefficiency and conflict between managers
Control
Assists managers in controlling activities with managements attention concentrated
on deviations from a pre-set plan
Performance Evaluation
Measuring success of achieving the budget, rewards like bonuses are given in some
companies and is meant to iinfluence human behaviour
Incremental budgeting
Indirect cost and support activities are prepared incrementally, say 5% on last year.
Zero based budgeting
Activities are justified & prioritised before decisions are taken. The approach is that budgeted
expenditure starts from base zero and description of each activity is included in a decision
package, they are evaluated, ranked and resources allocated.
The benefits are that the deficiencies of traditional budgeting are avoided, resources are
allocated by need or benefit; a questioning attitude is created and the focus is on attention on
outputs in relation to value for money
Anthony (1965) categorised control into three main types:
Strategic Control
The setting of corporate strategy and long term objectives for the organisation.
Operational Control
Operational control is ensuring that specific tasks are carried out. This is primarily
concerned with the processing of inputs and raw materials to get outputs.
Management Control
Management control is the coordination of the day to day activities in an organisation
to ensure that inputs and raw materials are used efficiently and effectively towards
achieving long term goals. Management control, therefore, links strategic control and
operational control.
Management control utilises regular feedback reporting systems so that corrective action can
taken where variances from plan are identified. The budget plays an important role here in
providing controls to aid management control.
The systematic comparison of planned inputs to actual results made using the budget,
followed by corrective action where deviations from plan exist, is known as a control system.
The system providing the reports for this control system is known as responsibility
accounting. This will be discussed in more detail later in the notes.

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Feedback and Feed-forward Controls


Feedback control - occurs where actual outputs are monitored against desired
outputs and corrective action is taken where there is a variance between the two.
Feed-forward control predictions are made about future outputs and compared to
desired outputs and action is taken where there is a difference between the two.
So, with feed-forward controls any likely errors can be foreseen and actions taken to avoid
them, whereas, with feedback control actual errors against the plan are identified and
corrective actions taken to achieve the remainder of the plan.
The budgeting process is an example of both a feed-forward and feedback control system.
Budgets as feed-forward control
In putting budgets together, and submitting them to the budget committee, they are compared
against the future expectations of the organisation as outlined in the long term plan. If the
budget falls short of these expectations then it may be adjusted and alternatives considered.
This process may continue until a budget is agreed that will meet long term expectations.
Budgets as feedback control
During the budget period actual results are compared to the budget and any deviations from
budget identified. Corrective actions are then taken to ensure that future results are in line with
the budget.

BEYOND BUDGETING
During recent years the business environment has become far more complex,
dynamic, turbulent and uncertain. Shorter product lifecycles coupled with
technological advancement has focused greater attention on innovation as a
determinant of corporate success. Although organisations need to be as adaptive to
change as possible, the rigidity of the budget serves only to stifle innovation and
responsiveness to change. The need to comply with a fixed plan, and to manage with
resources which may have been allocated more than one year earlier, act as
impediments that prevent managers from responding quickly to changes in today's
business environment.
The weaknesses of traditional budgeting processes have been the subject of much
attention and many commentators. Such weaknesses include the following:

Budgets prepared under traditional processes add little value and require far
too much valuable management time which would be better spent elsewhere.
Too heavy a reliance on the 'agreed' budget has an adverse impact on
management behaviour, which can become dysfunctional with regard to the
objectives of the organisation as a whole.
The use of budgeting as a base for communicating corporate goals - setting
objectives, continuous improvement etc. - is seen as contrary to the original
purpose of budgeting as a financial control mechanism.
Most budgets are not based on a rational, causal model of resource
consumption, but are often the result of protracted internal bargaining
processes.
Conformance to budget is not seen as compatible with a drive towards
continuous improvement.
Traditional budgeting processes have insufficient external focus.

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Rolling, or perhaps monthly, budgets focus management attention on current and


likely future realities within the organisational context. This is not seen as managing
change, as this is outside the control of the organisation. Rather it is seen as an
attempt to keep ahead of change or, strictly speaking, to be more in control of the
response to the challenges facing the organisation. This importance may be
emphasised in the knowledge-based economies that have developed in the western
world.
Knowledge-based companies face competition which may seriously undermine any
innovation. This is particularly the case as product lifecycles become shorter.
Invariably, price levels are falling while the demand for increased product/service
quality is rising. Organisations need to be operating at the excellent end of the quality
spectrum if they are to continue to flourish and remain close to their customers. It is
arguable that talented managers who seek freedom, challenge and responsibility are
also in short supply. Such individuals often find traditional time-consuming and
'legalistic' budget processes off-putting. The rapid production of new solutions and
strategies also depends on attracting and retaining such individuals.
In this view of the world, the traditional budget is seen as the fixed plan in accordance
with which all management processes are based and aligned. This determines how
managers behave and the activities and objectives on which they focus. Annual
budgeting is seen as absorbing considerable management time and the monthly
comparisons of actual and budgeted performance are primarily concerned with control
issues. Managers will not exceed their budgets by perhaps spending necessary
resources outside the planned budget cycle to react to events because their bonuses
or
even
their
jobs
may
be
put
in
jeopardy.

A major problem lies in the fact that circumstances will be different when the budget
was set and when subsequent comparisons are made and management decisions
required. An increasingly competitive global arena further accentuates the problem.
Inflexibility is thus seen as the key failing of traditional budgeting, and companies are
being urged to move towards continuous rolling forecasting to enable speedy and
coordinated adaptations to actual and anticipated changes in the business
environment.
Traditional budgets show the costs of functions and departments (eg staff costs and
establishment costs) instead of the costs of those activities that are performed by
people (e.g. receipt of goods, processing and dispatch of orders).
Thus managers have no visibility of the real 'cost drivers' of their business. In addition,
it is probable that a traditional budget contains a significant amount of non-valueadded costs that are not visible to managers.
The annual budget also tends to fix the capacity for the forthcoming budget period,
thereby undermining the potential of activity-based management (ABM) analysis to
determine required capacity from a customer-demand perspective.

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Those experienced in the use of ABM techniques will be familiar with such problems.
However, their tasks would be much easier to perform, and their results more reliable,
if such problems were removed.
THE 'BEYOND BUDGETING' MODEL - PRIVATE SECTOR
In the private sector, managers are forced to consider current and future opportunities
and threats, particularly where rolling monthly forecasts of financial performance
operate together with a focus on other non-financial 'value drivers'.
In essence, the 'beyond budgeting' model entails devolved managerial responsibility
where power and responsibility go hand in hand. The view held by proponents of the
beyond budgeting model is that the following benefits may accrue as a result of its
successful application by management:

It creates and fosters a performance climate based on competitive success.


Goals are agreed via reference to external benchmarks as opposed to
internally-negotiated fixed targets. Managerial focus shifts from beating other
managers for a slice of resources to beating the competition.
It motivates people by giving them challenges, responsibilities and clear values
as guidelines. Rewards are team-based, in recognition of the fact that no single
person can act alone to achieve goals.
It devolves performance responsibilities to operational management who are
closer to the 'action'. This uses the 'know-how' of individuals and teams
interfacing with the customer, which in turn enables a far more rapid adaptation
to changing market needs.
It empowers operational managers to act by removing resource constraints.
Key ratios are set, rather than detailed line-by-line budgets. For example,
gearing and liquidity ratios may be used to show there is enough cash in the
bank to meet liabilities. Local access to resources is thus based on agreed
parameters rather than line-by-line budget authorisations. This is aimed at
speeding up the response to environmental threats and enabling quick
exploitation of new opportunities.
It establishes customer-orientated teams that are accountable for profitable
customer outcomes. These teams agree resource and service-level
requirements with service departments via the establishment of service level
agreements.
It creates transparent and open information systems throughout the
organisation, which should provide fast, open and distributed information to
facilitate control at all levels. The IT system is crucial in flexing the key
performance indicators as part of the rolling forecast process.

THE PUBLIC SECTOR


The legal framework of public sector organisations would probably prevent such a
system being introduced. As with all alternatives, the success of a particular process
depends on the needs of the individual organisation. The alternative of the beyond
budgeting model places considerable emphasis on the need for organisational,
managerial and cultural changes in order that it may be successfully applied by
organisations.
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This will present considerable behavioural challenges and individual managers might
become overwhelmed by the complexity of decision-making in such an unregulated
decision-making environment.
In the public sector, the budget process inevitably has considerable influence on
organisational processes, and represents the financial expression of policies resulting
from politically motivated goals and objectives.
Yet the reality of life for many public sector managers is an increased pressure to
perform in a resource-constrained environment, while also being subjected to growing
competition.
In essence, a public sector budget:

establishes the level of income and expenditure


authorises that expenditure, once agreed, out of the planned income
acts as a control on expenditure and income
communicates policies and plans
focuses attention on the future
motivates managers and staff.

While these issues may be common with the private sector, a number of issues arise
which are specific to the public sector. For example, UK local authorities are prevented
by law from borrowing funds for revenue purposes or budgeting for a deficit. If the
beyond budgeting model is to allow greater freedom for managers then it will take a
considerable change of mindset in the public sector to achieve the flexible agenda
envisaged, especially where such flexibility would involve considerable and increased
delegation to managers.
Are managers capable of making this change, as it would entail the adoption of a
radically different approach?
Local authority financial regulations also tend to prevent the transfer of funds from one
budget head to another (otherwise known as virement) without compliance with
various rules and regulations. These rules (expressed in the financial regulations of
public sector organisations) will be consistent with the policies of the organisation and
are designed to prevent expenditure on items such as permanent staff where such
costs would go beyond the budget year and represent a commitment of future
resources.
Budgets in the public sector tend to concentrate on planning for one financial year
ahead. Attempts are being made by UK central government, through the
comprehensive spending review, to place an emphasis on the longer-term. However,
considerable difficulties exist within the individual organisations that make up the
public sector when creating a budget system that reflects longer-term objectives and
goes beyond the annual cycle. It also remains to be seen how the relatively new
system of resource accounting in central government will fit into the budgeting
framework.

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Traditional methods of budgeting in the public sector centre on the bid system and
incremental budgeting. These approaches focus on changes at the margin and
generally reflect acceptance of the budget base from the previous year. This is partly
a reflection of the size and complexity of public sector organisations, but also the
internal political power of large departments, which protect their positions through their
relative strength. Bid systems also minimise conflict, as debate and power struggles
are only concerned with the 'incremental' items.
More advanced approaches are represented within financial planning systems, and
include such concepts as zero-based budgeting and planned programme budgeting
systems with a timeframe greater than one year.
Whether the public sector can adapt to the concept of greater flexibility - which lies at
the heart of beyond budgeting - remains a matter of ongoing debate. Such an
adaptation would require a mindset which not only moves away from control but also
requires a reduction in the internal political power of large departments which has been
at the heart of public sector budgeting for many years. The desire to generate
improved performance - essentially considered the driver for the beyond budgeting
model - is present in the public sector evidenced in initiatives such as key performance
indicators and 'best value' plans.
ACTIVITY BASED COSTING (ABC)
Organisations are typically structured hierarchically on a functional basis and costs are
typically reported, and control exercised, under commonly recognised general account
headings. Within this system, departments are controlled against budget and past
performance. This is a well tried and well understood approach but it fails due to
1. Senior management focusing effort on corporate strategies but failing to communicate
them down the organisation to the lower levels. Businesses try to meet their corporate
objectives and to meet the needs of their customers. However with each department
having its role to play in a cost budget, the departments often allow budgetary targets to
dominate. Their contribution to meeting business and customer needs is neglected.
2. Conventional cost management fails to recognise that corporate success depends on the
effectiveness of its key business processes.
Such processes frequently cross
departmental boundaries. Inadequacies, in any department which contributes to a
business process, can affect the entire organisation which is only as strong as the weakest
link. Traditional management accounting and financial control systems reflect the needs
for a hierarchical function in the organising structure. They do not recognise or support
the effectiveness of the key business processes.
ABM
The determination of the cost of a product or service is vital at the strategic planning level, as
it is at the operational level. For example, organisations may need to evaluate the market
profitability and should they remain in it?
However the customer will perceive things from his/her own perspective. Essentially this will
involve making decisions about the value of the service or product to them compared to its
cost. Using a customer perspective for managing the business implies that management will
have to concern itself with some or all of the following issues:

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How does the customer perceive the quality of our product versus that of our
competitors?
How can we continuously improve?
Do the activities undertaken by the company produce the value that the customer
requires - activity analysis?
What are the costs of these activities and are they being carried out efficiently?
How well are the activities/processes being performed relative to competitors?
What are the important things that we should be controlling?

Because the basis of this concern rests on the activities carried out this is called activity based
management.
In order to determine the cost of each activity it is necessary to determine how time is spent
and how costs build up. For example the profitability of a customer will depend not only on the
price and costs of the products purchased, but also on such factors as the number of orders
placed in a year, the number of calls made on the technical service department and so on.
This means that costs will have to be traced to this customer from all over the company, not
just the plant. This is done through cost drivers.
Cost drivers are those elements that give rise to the need for an activity such as the number
of orders for a sales order department, number of complaints for the customer service
department and so on. While there may be many identifiable cost drivers management will
need to identify the minimum set that will allow the costs to be calculated.
Cost drivers apply at different levels:
Unit level
Number of hours required to produce a product
Batch level
These are costs such as machine set-up or inspection, these occur once per batch
Processor product level
These cover such items as engineering change orders which refer to a product or
process.
Organisation level
They are incurred for supporting the continuing level of operations i.e. building
depreciation, division managers salary.
Customer Profitability
The needs of customers can vary radically. In their efforts to retain existing customers and
attract new ones, companies can be drawn into providing widely different levels of service in
respect of many different service elements such as frequency of delivery, number of order
lines, quantity per order line, customer location, discounts given, salesmen's visits and special
orders.
These have one thing in common, they all have associated costs. Conventional cost
accounting techniques rarely recognise them. As a result companies do not know the true
cost of trading with these customers, or even with customer groups. Certain customers may
attract so much cost that they provide no profit contribution at all. In addition, companies may
be unaware of the true value their customers place on the level of service they provide. Under
such circumstances, companies may be trading at a loss with certain customers, giving them
a costly service which they do not actually require.
ABC is one answer in view of the drawbacks of conventional cost management.
The ABC approach recognises the following -

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The need to generate product costs that more accurately reflect the factors which
drive them, such as variety and complexity - not just volume.
The requirement to attribute the cost of differing levels of service to your customers
in order to establish true customer profitability.
The need to be able to measure the cost of failure throughout the organisation,
particularly in the overhead functions, so as to focus management attention to the
major opportunities for improvement.
The need to identify the factors that drive costs and helps guide managers as to
where they can best direct their efforts in order to control costs.
The crucial importance of the key business processes.

ABB
The idea behind activity based budgeting is to develop an activity model (or series of linked
cost centre activity models) of resource requirements. This model can then be flexed to affect
different volume assumptions which may need to be evaluated after the first stage of the
budgeting process (external assessment). It can also be used as a basis for identifying and
producing performance improvement. Once the final budget model has been agreed, it then
forms the basis for management control through variance analysis with a more complete
understanding of the impact of changing volumes on activity resource requirements.
In developing the activity based budgeting model it is important to understand and identify: What activities are being/need to be carried out?
How efficiently the activities are being carried out and to what quality and
o Standard.
What is driving the level of resource required to perform this activity (the
o Activity level volume driver).
The relationships between the activity level volume driver and its root cause.
How the root cause may be changed and how this can affect the activity
o Resource required.
Activity based budgeting can take this a stage further by identifying and modelling a cascade
of activity level volume drivers. For example, in order to achieve a target sales volume, an
organisation needs to process so many orders which will result in so many invoices with so
many complaints and queries to handle before the transactions can be completed. Each of
these activity level volume drivers carries with it a unit cost that can be used to calculate the
total value of the resources required.
Understanding these cost linkages is vital to a good understanding of cost behaviour and this
is at the heart of activity based budgeting. However, this understanding is not fully exploited
unless management can use it to make changes in the way the organisation goes about its
business. The most significant of the cost beneficial changes can only be made if incorporated
into budgets through discussion and performance reviews.

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RESPONSIBILITY ACCOUNTING SYSTEMS


Responsibility accounting systems identify individual areas of responsibility in the
organisations structure. Each area of responsibility is often referred to as a responsibility
centre. Managers are allocated responsibility centres and held responsible for its
performance.
There are four types of responsibility centre:
1. Cost Centre managers are responsible and accountable for costs only
2. Revenue Centre managers are responsible and accountable for revenue only
3. Profit Centre managers are responsible and accountable for both revenues and
costs
4. Investment Centre managers are responsible and accountable for revenue, costs
and capital investment decisions
In operating a responsibility accounting system a number of issues have to be considered:

Controllable and uncontrollable costs


o Managers should only be judged and measured on costs and revenues that
they control. When a manager is allocated responsibility for uncontrollable
items then no matter what variances occur for that item the manager will not be
able to take actions to correct this situation. This only serves to demotivate the
manager concerned.

Problems of dual responsibility


o It may be for some items an
example, direct labour may be
However, training courses for
payments for attendance, may
manager.
o

element of shared responsibility exists. For


the responsibility of the production manager.
direct workers, which may require overtime
be the responsibility of the human resources

In these instances a responsibility accounting system should seek to assign


and report on cost to the person having primary responsibility.

Guidelines for reporting


o If a manager can control the quantity and price paid for a service or goods then
the manager is responsible for all of the expenditure incurred for that service
or goods.
o

If a manager can control the quantity of the service or goods but not the price
paid for that service or goods then only the variance in usage should be
attributed to that manager.

If a manager cannot control either the quantity or price paid for a service or
goods then both usage and expenditure are uncontrollable and should not be
attributed to the manager.

Arbitrary costs
Generally costs, such as insurance, heating and rent are apportioned to cost centres
on some sort of arbitrary basis, e.g. floor area. For managers operating in a
responsibility accounting system this would render them uncontrollable. Therefore,
managers should not be held responsible for them.

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However, if managers do not see these costs then they will not understand the costs
that are incurred to support their business areas. There is an argument, therefore, that
managers should be made aware of arbitrary costs. This would prevent the abuse of
services, such as IT support. It should also be borne in mind that they may have some
influence on the costs involved.
Human resource management (HRM) refers to the 'strategic and coherent approach to the
management of an organisation's most valued assets: the people working there who
individually and collectively contribute to the achievement of its objectives for sustainable
competitive advantage' (Armstrong).
People are of central importance in most organisations and their recruitment, management
and motivation forms part of the human resource management function.
The definition mentions competitive advantage and this reinforces the link between HRM and
strategy.

HRM goals
If HR strategies are to be effective and successful then HRM must be effective across four
main areas, namely
Commitment: requires good motivation and leadership.
Competence: requires good recruitment, assessment, training and staff development.
Congruence: requires good job design.
Cost-effectiveness: this normally comes from the achievement of the others.
Theories of HRM
The two theories that may be examined are :

Vrooms expectancy theory; and

Agency theory

VROOMS EXPECTANCY THEORY


Vrooms theory deals with management and motivation. It assumes that behaviour is caused
by a making a conscious choice from a number of alternatives, pleasure being maximised and
pain minimised. Vrooms realisation was that an employees performance is based on
individual factors such as skills, knowledge, personality, experience and abilities.
In essence the theory says individuals have differing goals, and they can be motivated if they
have certain expectations.
The expectations arising from expectancy theory are that

Efforts and performance are positively correlated

Positive performance results in positive rewards

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Then rewards satisfy an important need

Desire to satisfy outweighs the effort needed to succeed

The foundation of expectancy theory is based on three main beliefs


Valence: This refers to the emotional orientations that people have regarding
rewards/outcomes, management need to discover what people (employees) value;
Expectancy: Employees do not share the same levels of expectations and they have differing
levels of confidence in their own abilities. Management needs to identify and provide
employees with resources, training and support.
Instrumentality: There is a difference between employees perception of what they actually
desire and what they actually receive by way of rewards. Management need to ensure that
promises are honoured and the fulfilment by management of these promises is effectively
communicated.
The link between the three beliefs can be stated as:
Motivation = Valence expectancy
Agency Theory: Agency theory suggests that an organisation can be seen as agreements
between resource holders. An agency relationship arises whenever one or more individuals,
called principals, hire one or more other individuals, called agents, to perform some service
and then delegate decision-making authority to the agents.
Two of the primary agency relationships in a commercial organisation are between (1
shareholders and managers and (2) between employers and employees. These relationships
are not necessarily positive; and agency theory deals with these agency conflicts, or conflicts
of interest between agents and principals.
This has implications for, among other things, corporate governance and business ethics.
When agency exists, agency costs are also incurred, for example offering management
performance rewards to encourage managers to act in the best interest of shareholders'.
BUSINESS PROCESS REENGINEERING
This is often referred to by the acronym BPR and one of the ways that organisations aspire to
become more efficient and effective. Business Process Re-engineering (BPR) is the strategic
analysis of business processes and the planning and implementation of improved business
processes.
A key element underlying the BPR philosophy is that one should look at an organisation as a
series of processes, as opposed to functional specialties such as production, and marketing.
The approach advocated by Davenport (1992) is to
1. Develop the business vision and process objectives
2. Identify the business processes to be redesigned
3. Understand and measure the existing processes
4. Identify IT levers
5. Design and build a prototype of the new process
6. Adapt, if appropriate an organisations organisational structure and governance model
BPR is not a universal panacea and criticisms of the approach include

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Ineffectiveness of processes is what limits an organisations performance, this is not


necessarily true
The existing way of doing things is disregarded
No real focus is provided for process improvement on organisational constraints
The model (US origin) may be culturally biased towards a US perspective;cultural
differences make it difficult for this approach to be universally applicable.

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Financial Performance Indicators


Ratio Analysis
We understand how financial statements are prepared and the definitions of the terms used.
Assuming that this information is available in an accurate and timely manner what does it
mean? What is the significance of a particular level of profit or borrowing? How should the
information in the various financial statements be related to one another?
To a large extent this is done by the use of ratios in effect dividing one number by another.
There are a considerable number of ratios that could be calculated from any one set of
financial statements. We will discuss a few of the more common ones.
Ratios are calculated either to examine performance, or to make comparisons, or to decide
on risk, or to make forecasting easier. They can be combined, using suitable weights obtained
as a result of statistical studies, to form an index to show company solvency.
With any financial analysis the trend over a number of years is always important since any
number of special factors can distort one years figures. It is also important to use financial
information with care. As we have seen many of the numbers in financial statements are
subject to managements interpretation of future events or can be directly manipulated as a
result of fraud. Therefore when analysing statements of companies it is important to be aware
also of the trend in such things as market share, comments of customers and regulatory
bodies and other organisations.
All external analyses of this sort when carried out on other companies suffer from the fact that
the information is not always available until several months after the end of the financial year.
Finally, remember that there are no systems, whether naturally occurring or brought about by
the hand of man, that continue in a straight line or that grow in a compound fashion forever,
or that carry no risk. Their performance depends on the time scale over which they are being
examined. In the short term and it may be that they can be considered straight line in the long
term, however performance becomes erratic and cyclical.
Characteristics:
Ratios should have a number of characteristics.

The numerator and the denominator should be linked in some way. The more tenuous the
link, the less useful the ratio. A very common problem in ratio analysis is to find a
numerator and denominator, which are strongly linked from the available data.

The ratio should be measuring something which is important within or about the
organisation.

The result of the ratio must be able to be influenced in a positive way by the management
of the organisation so that managerial action which changes the numerator or the
denominator may indicate improvements or worsening in the ratio.

Because ratios are relative measures, they enable performance in different sized
organisations to be compared

They also enable performance of a single organisation to be measured and compared


over different time periods

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Operating Ratios:
The important ratios are those used to calculate sales, efficiency, risk, profitability and gearing.
Sales Ratios:
For example the ratio of operating profit or gross profit to sales or the ratio of expenses to
sales, for example selling expenses to sales. The profit to sales ratio is called Return on Sales
(ROS) and is widely used as a measure of how well a company is managed in comparison to
other companies in its sector.
With sales ratios it is important to bear in mind that some of the total costs of operations are
variable, some are fixed and some are semi-variable. Their ratios will respond differently to
different levels of sales.
Efficiency Ratios:
There are some ratios where sales is the numerator in the expression. These important
turnover relationships are calculated by dividing sales by the appropriate balance sheet item,
for example total inventory or debtors, or by total number of employees.
Receivables collection
Yearend receivables divided by sales (credit sales if available) gives the number of times that
the debtors turned over in a year. Divided by 365 it gives the number of days on average it
takes receivables to pay. An increasing trend in this number is a warning signal, especially if
the number of days outstanding is significantly higher than the industry average.
Payable Payments
This is the relationship between trade payables and cost of sales (or credit purchases if
available) multiplied by the number of days in a year (365).
Inventory Turnover
Cost of sales divided by average inventory for the year (opening inventory + closing inventory
divided by 2) multiplied by 365 gives the average age of the inventory. As usual an average
can hide an awful lot of obsolete stock that should have been written off, so comparisons with
prior years or with industry averages will aid in deciding whether inventories are too high.
Price changes over time can also effect this ratio.
Asset Turnover
This is generally calculated as sales to capital employed.
Employee Productivity
Sales divided by the number of employees gives a useful indicator of productivity in the
organisation when compared with industry averages.
Liquidity ratios:
These ratios are particularly important when deciding to extend credit to a customer or to
continue existing credit.
The Current ratio
This is the current assets divided by current liabilities or creditors due within one year. It gives
the companys ability to pay in the medium term say 4-9 months in the future. It is very
important to know the average for the sector here since different industries have different
operating characteristics. The large food retailers with their high inventory turnover and
virtually all cash sales are likely to have a ratio less than 1. Heavy manufacturing industry is
likely to have much higher ratios, as the cycle time from purchase of raw materials to delivery

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of finished goods is higher. It is really the relationship to the industry average that is important.
A figure of 100% would normally be acceptable; one of 30% would not.
Acid Test or Quick Ratio
This is the ratio of those current assets that can be quickly turned into cash compared to
current liabilities or creditors due within one year. Usually inventory is excluded from the
quick current assets leaving receivables and cash, because inventory is often difficult to turn
into cash in the short term. Once again it is the comparison with industry averages that is
important.
NET PRESENT VALUE
The NPV approach to capital investment appraisal is based on the simple notion that, after
discounting the projected cash flows, both in and out, an investment is likely to be worthwhile
if the present value of the inflows exceeds the present value of the outflows.
This condition is a positive net present value and indicates that the investment as projected
will earn more than the interest rate used to discount the cash flows. In economic terms, the
NPV represents the change in the value of the firm if the project is adopted.
If the present value of the outflows exceeds the present value of the inflows, that is the project
yields a negative net present value, then the investment as projected is earning less than the
discount rate and should be rejected.
The discount rate used represents the rate of return required to make the investment worthwhile, hence the accept/reject approach adopted above where respective positive and
negative net present values are achieved.
INTERNAL RATE OF RETURN
The internal rate of return (IRR) is a technique of investment appraisal which is related to the
NPV method. Using the NPV approach it is possible to demonstrate that a project which is
discounted at, say, a discount rate of 10% will be feasible because it gives a positive net
present value. If the discount rates are successively increased, the net present value will
steadily fall, go through zero, and then become negative, illustrating that higher discount rates
cause fewer projects to be worthwhile. The IRR is the discount rate which applies when the
present value of inflows equals the present value of outflows, that is, the net present value is
zero.
Once calculated, the IRR for a project is compared with the target return required by the
organisation. If it is greater than or equal to the latter, the project is likely to be worthwhile. If
it is less than the target return, the project should be rejected. Investments in mutually
exclusive projects are ranked according to the size of the IRR.
EPS
AND
THE
MEASUREMENT
OF
SHAREHOLDER
VALUE
EPS (earnings per share) is an accounting based measure and is considered, on its own to
be a weak measure of shareholder value. Earnings are based on the accounting measurement
of post-tax profit; measuring increases in shareholder value using profit based measures are
usually weaker than using cash based measures.
Some of the reasons cited for the weaknesses of EPS are
1. Alternative accounting methods may be employed, albeit different ways of reporting
earnings does not affect underlying economic value,
2. Risk is excluded and is not accounted for in annual reports,
3. Investment requirements are excluded (changes in for example the working capital are not
considered in reported earnings),

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4. Dividend policy is not considered


5. The time value of money is ignored
6. Intangible assets, such as intellectual property play a greater role in an increasing service
and knowledge oriented economy this is not directly reflected in the EPS figure.
Intangibles are generally still not regarded as assets in traditional accounting systems, unless
they comply with formal accounting recognition rules.
Major businesses usually require some sort of divisional structure. If it is to be made to work,
each will have its own performance criteria.
To the accountant, therefore, is bequeathed the problem of measuring how well or badly each
division has been at meeting these criteria.
A number of bases can be used, including profit margin comparisons, return on capital or
economic value added. Whichever is chosen, it is essential that costs, revenue and asset
valuations are adjusted so that like with like comparisons are made. Questions of asset and
cost allocation, valuation and apportionment all arise.
There are numerous examples of divisionalised structures. Many corporate structures
comprise divisions with clear product remit.
Such divisions often have their own management boards, financial targets and strategic plans.
Often at the centre is group management responsible for strategic and financial control and
ensures that management resource is optimised, best practice is adopted and synergies are
realised between operating divisions.
Croda International for example is divided into three major business sectors: Cosmetic and
Toiletries, Coatings and Chemicals. Each business sector sub-divides to divisions. The
surface coatings sector comprises Industrial Paints, Powder Coatings, Printing Inks and
Graphic Supplies.
In a previous financial report the chairman was quoted as the company will maintain a prudent
financial approach with a decentralised management judged, and rewarded by performance.
Each division is expected to produce a satisfactory return on capital employed, be capable of
showing consistent and long-term growth and achieve a significant position in its particular
markets.
Its overall aim is to achieve long-term growth in earnings per share, by continuing to build a
broadly based speciality chemical group with operations in main market areas of the world.

It has been said that divisionalisation and decentralisation are sometimes regarded as
synonymous but that in fact divisionalisation adds a new dimension by introducing
performance responsibility to divisional management.
Fulfilment of that responsibility can only be encouraged, rewarded and tempered if
performance is measured and monitored on a sound, accepted and comparable basis.

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Responsibility centres provide the basis for one such approach. A responsibility centre has
been defined by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants as a segment of the
organisation where an individual manager is held responsible for the segments performance.
There are three types of responsibility centre expense centres, profit centres, and
investment centres:

An expense centre is a location, function or items or equipment in respect of which


controls may be ascertained and related to cost units for control purposes
A profit centre is a segment of the business entity by which both revenues are received
and expenditures are caused or controlled. Such revenues and expenditure being
used to evaluate segmental performance.
An investment centre is a profit centre in which inputs are measured in terms of
expenses and outputs are measured in terms of revenues, and in which assets
employed are also measured, the excess of revenues over expenditure then being
employed.

Together they form the basis for responsibility accounting, a system of accounting, that
segregates revenues and costs into areas of personal responsibility in order to assess
performance attained by persons to whom authority has been assigned.
Profit responsibility performance can be reflected in figures relating profit to turnover.
However, performance may be subject to the fairness of apportioned costs and transfer prices.
Investment responsibility performance can be judged on the basis of return on investment or
residual income (excess earnings over the cost of capital). In each case the assets/capital
included should be that over which the responsible management has control. It is also clear
that assets must be valued on a consistent basis so that like for like comparisons can be made
between different investment responsibility centres.
Historical cost valuations should be converted to current valuations by using index numbers.
Working capital should be included as part of the total assets/capital employed calculation with
stocks valued on a similar basis between divisions.
When measuring the return, it is usual for the average capital employed/total asset figure for
the period to be used (the calculation is earnings times 100, divided by investment
[assets/capital employed]). This can be subdivided into profit margin (profit as a percentage
of sales), and asset turnover (sales divided by investment [assets/capital employed]).
Cost of capital used in residual income calculations should be the cost of financing the
business or division, of which the investment responsibility is being assessed. This may be an
average cost based on group experience or an amalgam of different costs.
Residual income is a concept that has been used by accountants for four or more decades.
Alfred Sloan, of General Motors Corporation, knew and used the principle in the 1920s.
ECONOMIC VALUE ADDED
More recently Stern Stewart New York Consultancy Group has trademarked the term EVA
(Economic Value Added) for what amounts to the same thing. EVA, according to the book The
Quest for Value the EVA Management Guide, is simply the net operating profit after tax less
the cost of capital (the weighted average cost of debt and equity) used in the business.

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Verity Perkins, a subsidiary of Lucas Verity, uses EVA to arrive at its investment decisions and
performance measurement analysis and also to reward divisional managers and employees.
Measurement of divisional performance, therefore, calls for some form of responsibility
accounting. It can be made in terms of earnings to sales, return on investment, residual
income, or economic value added. But none is more fitting than residual income or its 1990s
manifestation of economic value added.
The following example illustrates the performance measures mentioned earlier.
Example: Northcliffe Foods PLC

The animal feeds division of Northcliffe Foods Plc, results for year ended 31 December 2000
showed:
$m
40.00

Turnover
Costs:
Materials (arms length suppliers)
Materials (group-transfer price)
Labour
Production overhead
Apportioned group costs
Net profit

2.50
7.00
3.00
2.50
5.00
20.00

Profit for the year was $20.00m on a turnover of $40.00m giving a return to sales (profit margin)
of 50%. However it must be noted that the division is only management responsible for 40%
of its costs; 60% being transfers and apportioned costs.
Other divisional figures include:

Fixed Asset Investment


Working Capital

$m
65.00
15.00
80.00
$m

Capital Structure:
Equity
Debt

60.00
20.00
80.00

The dividend to shareholders had been 15% and interest of 10% was paid on the debt.
Cost of capital is thus:

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Ratio of:

Equity 3 x 15% =
Debt 1 x 10% =

45
10
55

55
4 = 13.75%
Return on Investment:
= Net Profit

Divisional Investment
= $20.00m x 100/1 = 25%
$80.00m
This is a very good return on capital, to put this in perspective the top five supermarkets over
the past five years have averaged approximately 18.00%.
Asset
Turnover
Divisional Investment
$40.00m
$80.00m

Turnover:

0.5

times

The business is generating 0.5 times its capital base in the form of turnover.
Residual Income / EVA, Economic Value added:
The excess of earnings over the cost of capital.
Divisional Investment $80.00m
Cost of Capital i.e.: 13.75% x $80.00m = $11.00m

Divisional Earnings $20.00m


Residual Income
$9.00m

Here we can see that the division has achieved earnings of $9.00m in excess of the cost of
financing the division.
Managements performance would be measured using RI / EVA and often management and
employees would be rewarded based on this performance measure.

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STRATEGIC PERFORMANCE MEASUREMENT


DIVISIONALISATION
As a business expands it eventually reaches the stage where it becomes appropriate to split
it up into smaller, more manageable units to decentralise. Reasons may include:

Size a large organisation with centralised management become unpractical


Nature of work specialists become necessary to deal with the diverse and complex
activities of a business
Motivation managers need incentives to perform well
Uncertainty volatile market conditions are better coped with by a manager with a
smaller, closer, sphere of influence
Geographical it is important to get close to markets and sources of supply
Fiscal profits can, subject to legal restrictions, be diverted in such a way as to
minimise tax liabilities

It may well be the case that some degree of decentralisation arises as a result of the way in
which a business expands. If the expansion is by take-over of companies that then become
subsidiaries within group, a decentralised structure automatically arises.
One condition for a successful decentralisation is that the various divisions should be more or
less interdependent of each other. However, in practice, this is unlikely to be the case and a
certain amount of inter-divisional trading will take place. A transfer pricing policy is needed if
goods and services are passed between divisions.
Two of the main organisational structures are functional or divisionalised, represented as
follows:
FUNCTIONAL STRUCTURE

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DIVISIONAL STRUCTURE

TRANSFER PRICING
Transfer pricing deals with the problem of pricing products or services sold (Transferred
within an organisation). Decisions over suitable transfer prices are needed if a firm has split
itself into autonomous units i.e. it has decentralised or is involved in setting prices between
connected companies in different countries.
The approaches to setting transfer prices are similar to those for external sales, there are costbased methods and market based methods. At first sight it would seem that setting prices for
internal transfers is less critical than for external sales; however it has to be appreciated that
the divisions into which a large group will split itself expect to act as self-contained units. The
decision over transfer pricing is even more critical since top management is in a position to
identify whether it is more economical for a product or service to be bought and sold internally
or externally, but at the same time needs to take into account behavioural considerations such
as the motivation of divisional managers.
It might appear that the credit to the supplying division is merely offset by an equal debit to the
receiving division and that therefore, as far as the whole organisation is concerned, it has a
net zero effect. This is true in terms of the physical application of a transfer pricing system
once it has been decided upon and implemented. However, there are important behavioural
and organisational elements associated with transfer pricing and the choice of which method
to adopt. The transfer price does affect the profit of each division separately and, therefore,
can affect the level of motivation of each divisional manager.
Adopting a transfer pricing policy will result in:
Total corporate profit to be divided up between divisional profit centres, it may result in a
cost centre being converted into a profit centre
Information becoming available for divisional decision-making

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Information being made available to help assess the performance of divisions and
divisional managers

The rules for the operation of a transfer pricing policy are the same for any policy in a
decentralised organisation. A system should be reasonably easy to operate and understand
as well as being flexible in terms of a changing organisational structure. In addition there are
four specific criteria which a good transfer pricing policy should meet:
It should provide motivation for divisional managers
It should allow divisional autonomy and independence to be maintained
It should allow divisional performance to be assessed objectively
It should ensure that divisional managers make decisions that are in the best interests of
the divisions and also of the company as a whole.(goal congruence)
Setting the transfer price
In the majority of cases the transfer price will be set somewhere between these two extremes.
It is important that the criteria used to pick a price are easy to understand and that the impact
of the price on the profits of the two segments can be easily evaluated.
The difference between the upper and lower prices represents the corporate profit/savings
generated by producing the product or service internally. The chosen price divides the profit
between the two segments. For external reporting this is irrelevant since the profit element will
be eliminated when the financial statements are consolidated. However this division of profits
may be extremely important for internal reporting since it affects the results of the responsibility
reports and hence the success or failure of the segment.
There are three main methods used to set the transfer price.
Cost-Based Transfer Prices
The big problem with cost-based prices is deciding on the cost to be used. Is it to be an actual
or standard cost? Will it be fully absorbed cost or variable cost and if so what will be included?
Will there be additional elements to cover general and administrative costs for example?
If actual costs are used then the cost may vary according to the season or according to the
efficiency of the supplying segment and the receiving segment will have no idea how to set its
sales prices. What additional costs are included and are they reasonable or have they been
inflated?
Market-Based Cost
Market pricing is believed to be an objective arms length method of arriving at a transfer price.
If a supplying segment is operating efficiently it should be able to make a profit at this price.
Similarly if the receiving segment is operating efficiently it should be able to make a profit since
it would have to purchase at this price if the item was not manufactured internally.
However several problems may exist in practice. First market price may not be appropriate
because internal production should lead to savings in bad debt, delivery and marketing
expenses. The product or service may not be available on the open market. If the market price
is temporarily depressed or increased due to events beyond the control of either segment
which price should be taken, the normal or the temporary? Finally, in a market, discounts on
price are ordinarily given when volume orders are placed or long-term contracts are signed.
Finally the market price may not equal the LRMC and in this case the company will fail to set
it price/output decisions correctly, although this is less true of commodity products.

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Negotiated Transfer Prices


Some companies allow business segments to negotiate the transfer price, usually between
the upper and lower limits set out above. There is an implication here that the buying segment
has the right to purchase form external sources if it cannot agree a price. Such freedom runs
the risk of sub optimisation as segment managers fight to gain the lions share of the available
profit. For this reason the company may specify arbitration processes and for performance
management purposes may evaluate managers on the basis of the total profit made by both
segments, irrespective of the segment n which they work.
Dual Pricing
To overcome these problems companies can adopt the practice of dual pricing. Here the
agreed transfer price is used only for the purposes of financial reporting of individual segment
results. For management evaluation purposes the variable or absorbed cost is applied to the
results of one or both segments. The difference between the entity and management price
is called the mark-up.
The mark-up is accounted for by assigning it to a different account that is used for
reconciliation purposes. That is to say the amount of mark-up in the buying segments
accounts must equal the amount of mark-up in the selling segments accounts. This
reconciliation is the same as is done for the purposes of consolidation of the accounts.
Using dual pricing allows a company to get the best of both worlds. The transfer price can be
set to meet the regulatory and corporate finance constraints while the price used by local
management can be based on a close approach to the economists long-run marginal costs
so allowing the companys global operations to optimize their third-party pricing and output
decisions on a decentralized management basis.
ACTIVITY TWO: PROVIDE INC. AND RECEIVE INC: TRANSFER PRICING
Receive Inc. and Provide Inc. are trading subsidiaries of the Happy Group of companies.
Receive Inc. manufactures a branded product sold in containers at a price of $30 per
container; the following cost information has been obtained.
Its direct product costs per container are:
Raw materials from Provide Inc. at a transfer price of $14 per container.
Additional processing costs at of $5 per container.
Receives monthly fixed costs are $60,000, a market research study has indicated that
Receive Inc. could increase their market share by 75% in volume if it were to reduce its price
by 20%.
Provide Inc. produces a standard product which can be converted and used for a number of
final products. It sells one quarter of its output to Receive Inc. and the remainder to
customers outside the group.
The production capacity of Provide Inc. is 52,000 containers per month, but competition is
tough and it plans to sell no more than 36,000 containers per month for the year ending 31st
March. Its variable processing costs are $7 per container and its monthly fixed costs are
$80,000 per month.
The Happy Groups transfer pricing policy is to use market prices, where known.
Required
a.
Calculate the monthly profit position for each of Provide Inc. and Receive Inc. if the
sales Receive Inc. are

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(i) At their present level, and


(ii) At the higher potential level indicated by the market research, subject to a
in price of 20%.
b.

cut

Recommend, with supporting calculations, a possible transfer price.

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RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)


ROI is similar to the ROCE concept; it is the use and application of the measure that is different
to ROCE. ROI is more commonly applied at the project or SBU (Strategic Business Unit)
level.
Advantages and Disadvantages
The main advantages are that
Calculations are very simple
The entire life of the project is taken into account
Profit is a well understood concept and easily obtainable
As a relative measure ROI enables comparison against projects or SBUs of varying
sizes
The main disadvantages are
The timing of profit flows is completely ignored.
There are a number of different definitions of ROI and various ways of calculating it
which can lead to confusion.
The crucial factor in investment decisions is cash flow and the ROI uses profits.
The technique takes no account of the time value of money.
It takes no account of the incidence of profits;
Averages can be misleading.
RESIDUAL INCOME
This is expressed as an absolute figure, it is normnally calculated as
Profit (EBIT) - Imputed Interest Charge on Project/SBU Investment
The interest charge is a notional charge based normally on a risk adjusted cost of capital
applied to the book value of the value of the investment at the start if each year.
Advantages and disadvantages of residual income
Advantages
It makes divisional managers aware of the cost of financing their divisions.
It is an absolute measure of performance and not subject to the problems of relative
measures such as return on investment.
In the long run it supports the net present value approach to investment appraisal (the
present value of a projects residual income equals net present value of that project).
Disadvantages
In common with most other divisional performance measures, problems exist in
defining controllable and traceable income and investment.
Residual income gives the symptoms not the cause of problems. If residual income
falls the figures give little clue as to why.
Problems exist in comparing the performance of different sized divisions (large
divisions will earn larger residual incomes simply due to their size
Residual income when applied on a short term basis is a short term measure of
performance and may lead managers to overlook projects whose payoffs are long
term.
ECONOMIC VALUE ADDED
Stern Stewart New York Consultancy Group has trademarked the term EVA (Economic Value
Added) for what is an extension/refinement of the Residual Income concept. EVA, according

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to the book The Quest for Value the EVA Management Guide, is simply the net operating
profit after tax less the cost of capital (the weighted average cost of debt and equity) used in
the business.
EVA is seen to the true economic profit made by an enterprise, the concept being that true
shareholder value is created when an organisation generates economic profits in excess of
the financing costs of the economic capital of an organisation. The economic profits are
described as NOPAT (Net Operating Profits after Tax), this being a proxy measure for net
cash flows.
NOPAT is arrived at by making a number of adjustments to accounting profit, example
adjustments being for amortised goodwill, non-cash expenses, provisions and interest
charges.
The economic capital is arrived at by making a number of adjustments to the accounting
measure of capital, example adjustments being for amortised development costs and goodwill,
provisions for doubtful debts.
The financing costs represent the target WACC applied to the economic capital
ACTIVITY THREE: PROJECT ASSESSMENT PERFORMANCE MEASURES
Global Inc. is currently considering a capital project that will last for three years; the following
data has been collected:
1. The project will require an investment of $66 million, it will have no residual value and
depreciation is calculated on a straight line basis.
2. The following forecast sales data has been obtained for the project over three years.
Year 1
Year 2
Year 3
Sales volumes
1.8 million
2 million
2 million
Unit selling price
$60
$60
$60
3. Incremental costs
$40million
$45million
$50million
4. The project is forecast to have a contribution to sales ratio of 60% throughout the three
year period.
5. Immediate investment in working capital will be as below; these amounts would be
recovered in full at the end of the three year period.
Inventory
$5m
Receivables
$5m
Payables
$3m
The cost of capital to be used is 12%.
Assumptions and additional information:
All cash flows other than the initial capital and working capital investment occur at the
end of each year.
Use the net book value of the asset at the start of each year to represent the value of
the asset for the year
Ignore taxation.
Required:
a. Prepare a table for each year of the project showing
EBITDA
Net profit
Residual income using straight line depreciation
Return on investment using straight line depreciation

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Residual income using annuity depreciation


Return on investment annuity depreciation

b. Calculate the projects Net Present Value (NPV) and Internal Rate of Return (IRR)

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CORPORATE FAILURE
Private or not for profit businesses are not established with the aim of failure but unfortunately
it does occur. It has been suggested that the main reason for business failure is poor
leadership.
According to business commentator Brian Tracy, Leadership is the most important single
factor in determining business success or failure in our competitive, turbulent, fast-moving
economy. Based on a study by the US Bank, the main reasons why businesses fail are:

Poor business planning


Poor financial planning
Poor marketing
Poor management

Proper application of these key factors is a function of good leadership. According to the study,
in the business planning category, 78% of businesses fail due to the lack of a well-developed
business plan. Remember the old saying: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
In this financial planning category, 82% of businesses failed due to poor cash flow
management skills, followed closely by starting out with too little money. Business leadership
is about taking financial responsibility, conducting sound financial planning and research, and
understanding the unique financial dynamics of ones business. Half of the UKs small
businesses fail within the first three years because of cash flow problems. They either run out
of money or run out of time. Consumer debt, personal bankruptcies, and company
insolvencies are all now on the increase.
The third business failure factor profiled in the study, and a critical one, was marketing. Over
64% of the businesses surveyed in the marketing category failed because their owners
ignored the importance of properly promoting their business, and then ignored their
competition. Again, as a business leader, you must be able to effectively communicate your
idea to the right people and understand their unique needs and wants. Leadership is all about
taking initiative, taking action, getting things done, and making decisions. If you are not doing
anything of significance to market and promote your business, you are most likely headed for
business failure.
You must also know your competition. Leadership is about providing value to customers; if
your main competitors are all providing a better quality and lower priced product, how can you
possibly create any value? Either you harness your strengths to provide different benefits
(such as speed, convenience, or better service), lower your price and improve quality, create
a different product for an unmet demand, or get out of the game.
Finally, one of the most important reasons why businesses fail is due to poor management. In
the management category, 70% of businesses failed due to owners not recognising their
failings and not seeking help, followed by insufficient relevant business experience. Not
delegating properly and hiring the wrong people were additional major contributing factors to
business failure in this category.
AVOIDING FAILURE
Perhaps the best way to avoid failure is to look at the many reasons put forward for business
failure and to avoid them - these include

Having a strategy.

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Having controls.
Board participation.
Avoiding one-person dominance.
Having in depth management.
Being informed of, and reacting to, change.
Customer focused.
Correct use of computers.
Robust and non-manipulated accounts.
Meeting employee needs.

Being aware of the reasons for business failure is one way to take action to try and avoid
and/or mitigate it. Next week I will be taking an alternative way of looking at and evaluating
business failure.
QUALITATIVE MODELS
We have talked about corporate failure and its link that to leadership, however there are
alternative ways of assessing potential failure. Financial measures can provide some insight,
but as sole indicators of organisational performance they have limitations. One way of
assessing potential failure is use a framework, such as the Argenti (1976) approach, weighting
being given to each variable - each variable shown below as underlined .
Defects leads to Mistakes made leads to Symptoms of failure
DEFECTS
Defect can be divided into management weaknesses and accounting deficiencies as follows:
Management weaknesses:

Autocratic chief executive


Failure to separate role of chairman and chief executive
Passive board of directors
Lack of balance of skills in management team financial, legal, marketing etc
Weak finance director
Lack of management in depth
Poor response to change

Accounting deficiencies:

No budgetary control
No cash flow plans
No costing system

MISTAKES MADE
The three main mistakes likely occur are:
1. High gearing A company allows gearing to rise to such a level that one unfortunate event
can have disastrous consequences
2. Overtrading This occurs when a company expands faster than its financing is capable
of supporting. The capital base can become too small and unbalanced.

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3. The big project Any external/internal project, the failure of which would bring the
company down
SYMPTOMS OF FAILURE
The final stage of the process occurs when the symptoms of failure become visible. Symptoms
of failure are classified using the following categories:
1. Financial signs
2. Creative accounting Optimistic statements are made to the public and figures are altered
(inventory valued higher, depreciation lower, etc).
3. Non-financial signs various signs include frozen management salaries, delayed capital
expenditure, falling market share, rising staff turnover
4. Terminal signs At the end of the failure process, the financial and non-financial signs
become so obvious that even the casual observer recognises them
Company-specific variables Such as management experience, customer concentration,
dependence on one or a few suppliers, level of diversification, qualified audit opinions, etc.
General characteristics such as industry type
Factors in the external environment Such as the macroeconomic situation, including interest
rates, the business cycle, and the availability of credit.
An important thing to remember is that action can be taken to reduce and mitigate the impact
of business failure, and thus reduce the emotional and financial consequences attached.
It has become increasingly important for organisations to develop systems of performance
measurement which not only reflect the growing complexity of the business environment but
also monitor their strategic response to this complexity. The need for good performance
management is an ongoing issue, some of the main issues requiring consideration by
management are:

Setting performance standards and targets


Linking rewards to performance
Considering the potential benefits and problems of performance measures.

In attempting to establish a clear link between performance and strategy it is vital that
management ensures that the performance measures target areas within the business where
success is a critical factor. The criteria for selecting performance measures for the scorecard
are

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ESTABLISHING A PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM


The start point is usually an organisations underlying mission, vision and strategic direction,
in general the approach
Identify key objectives known as Critical Success Factors (CSFs)
Establish measures for CSFs measures are known as Key Performance Indicators
(KPIs), these are driven by CSFs
Set target KPIs
Establish initiatives and ways to achieve the above
Devise methods of capturing the data and processing the information
Monitor the above via management reporting

1
2
3
4
5
6

The above can be seen as a cascading effect, i.e. CSFs determine KPIs, we then set a target
and then consider ways to achieve the target KPI; the KPIs are then calculated, monitored
and reported to the board and operational managers. If the target KPIs are not being met then
appropriate action can be taken.
Some sense of prioritisation has to occur otherwise we will merely end up calculating and
monitoring a list of KPIs that have no cohesive linkage and can cause us to lose sight of our
main strategic purpose. This methodology, if developed and implemented effectively replaces
the conventional budgetary reporting system where the focus is more on cost control
important but not the sole determinant of achieving our ultimate mission.
CRITERIA FOR DESIGNING PERFORMANCE INDICATORS
Name
Clear indicator name
Identification of what strategic element is
Strategic element being assessed
being assessed (e.g. a specific resource,
a core competence, one of the output
deliverables)
Purpose
Descriptions of the key purpose
Data collection method

Formula and/or scale

Source of data

Short description of how the data is


collected
Identification of the scale used to assess
performance
Identification of where the data comes
from

Frequency
How often is the indicator measured?

Data entry
Who is collecting and updating the date?

Ownership
Targets and performance thresholds

Identification of the person(s) of


function(s) responsible for the measured
element.
Identification of targets, benchmarks, and
thresholds for traffic lighting

Reporting/notifications

Audience/access

Reporting frequency

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Identifies the audience, outlets, and


access rights
Identifies how often the indicator is
reported
Mahmood Reza on behalf of Knowledge Grab

Reporting formats

Notifications/workflows

Expiry/revision date

Identified how the performance is


presented (numerical, graphical,
narrative formats)
Identifies proactive notifications and
workflows
Identifies an expirations or revision date

Cost estimate

Estimation of the costs incurred by


introducing and maintaining this indicator

Confidence level

Evaluation: e.g. good J fair : imperfect L


Written comment

Reproduced from Strategic Performance Management, B Marr, 2006

A typical organisation will need to measure performance in the following areas:


a) In terms of its relations with external parties (such as customers, markets, suppliers and
competitors);
b) Across the organisation as a whole;
c) Within each of the main departments of the business;
d) At the level of individual activities.
A performance indicator is something specific that allows measurement of the objective, i.e.
how will we know when we get there.
Performance indicators can be expressed in many ways:
a)

Numbers (sold, distributed or served);

b)

Consistency (of support, attendance, returning customers and so on);

c)

Quality (in terms of rejections or returns);

d)
Levels of satisfaction (from surveys, recommendations, complaints, returns or
cancelled orders);
e)

Timescales (for response, delivery, completion and so on).

Monitoring & Review


An important element of monitoring and review is feedback which, within the context of
planning, is information about the effectiveness of processes and actual achievements.
Feedback is information that is gathered by measuring the outputs of the system itself, where
important information is automatically brought to the attention of the people who need it.
The key questions that need to be asked are as follows.

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a)

What should we be monitoring?

b)

Why should we be monitoring it?

c)

When should the monitoring take place?

d)

How should the monitoring be done?

e)

Who should do the monitoring?

We can monitor performance in a number of ways:


a)

By examination of performance indicators;

b)

By examination of accounts, reports and other records;

c)

By observations;

d)

By using questionnaires;

e)

By holding review meetings

f)

By interviews with key personnel.

It is important to be clear about the reliability of any particular method of monitoring chosen
and its value as a source of information.
Review involves the analysis of the monitored results so that conclusions can be drawn on the
organisations overall performance. These results or conclusions can be used to:
a)

Update everyone on progress and performance;

b)

Indicate how far the objectives have been met;

c)

Highlight any shortfalls in achievement;

d)

Suggest changes that need to be made to plans or objectives;

e)

Provide a record for future reference; or

f)

Satisfy funding bodies that progress is being made according to plan.

Any lessons drawn from the review exercise should be acted upon. This may require
substantial alterations to existing plans if it is clear that they are no longer realistic.
TYPES OF PERFORMANCE MEASURES
Traditionally, three types of performance measures have been encountered in practice. Each
is discussed in turn.
Input Measures
At the lowest end of the performance measurement spectrum is the tracking of program inputs.
Typical inputs include staff time and budgetary recourses.

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Inputs are generally the simplest elements to measure, but provide limited information for
decision making and analysis of actual results.
Output measures
Results generated from the use of program inputs are the domain of the output measure.
Theses metrics track the number of people served, services provided, or units produced by a
program or service. They may sometimes be referred to as activity measures. Depending on
the nature of the program or services, output measures may provide information on whether
desired results are being achieved.
Outcome measures
Outcomes track the benefit received by stakeholders as a result of the organisations
operations. Whereas inputs and outputs tend to focus internally on the program or service
itself, outcomes reflect the concerns of the participants (clients, customers, other
stakeholders). Outcome measures shift the focus from activities to results, from how a
program operates to the good it accomplishes. Outcome measures offer many advantages:

Outcomes demonstrates results, and in todays environment that is exactly what


everyone, from the general public to the worlds most generous philanthropists, are
demanding from public and non-profit organisations.
Outcomes provide guidance in resource allocations. Funding can be directed in
alignment with those actions that produce documented results.
Focus on outcomes, rather than inputs or outputs, serves to guide the entire
organization toward its true aims.
Accountability is enhanced when the focus shifts to outcomes. Administrators cannot
hide behind data indicating numbers served, but must outline specifically how targeted
audiences are better off as a result of their program or service.

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PERFORMAMCE MODELS

There are a number of models of performance measurement which can be used by


management; we will look at four of these, namely

Performance Pyramid
Balance Scorecard
Fitzgerald and Moon Building Blocks
Performance Prism

PERFORMANCE PYRAMID, LYNCH AND CROSS (1991).


The performance pyramid derives from the idea that an organisation operates at different
levels each of which has a different focus. However, it is vital that these different levels support
each other. Thus the pyramid links the business strategy with day-to-day operations.
In proposing the use of the performance pyramid Lynch and Cross suggest measuring
performance across nine dimensions. These are mapped onto the organisation - from
corporate vision to individual objectives.
Within the pyramid the corporate vision is articulated by those responsible for the strategic
direction of the organisation. The pyramid views a range of objectives for both external
effectiveness and internal efficiency. These objectives can be achieved through measures at
various levels as shown in the pyramid. These measures are seen to interact with each other
both horizontally at each level, and vertically across the levels in the pyramid.
At the bottom level of the pyramid is what Lynch and Cross refer to as 'measuring in the
trenches'. Here the objective is to enhance quality and delivery performance and reduce cycle
time and waste. At this level a number of non-financial indicators will be used in order to
measure the operations. The four levels of the pyramid are seen to fit into each other in the
achievement of objectives. For example, reductions in cycle time and/or waste will increase
productivity and hence profitability and cash flow
The strength of the performance pyramid model lies in the fact that it ties together the
hierarchical view of business performance measurement with the business process review. It
also makes explicit the difference between measures that are of interest to external parties such as customer satisfaction, quality and delivery - and measures that are of interest within
the business such as productivity, cycle time and waste.
Lynch and Cross concluded that it was essential that the performance measurement systems
adopted by an organisation should fulfil the following functions:
1. The measures chosen should link operations to strategic goals. It is vital that
departments are aware of the extent to which they are contributing - separately and
together - in achieving strategic aims.
2. The measures chosen must make use of both financial and non-financial information
in such a manner that is of value to departmental managers. In addition, the availability
of the correct information as and when required is necessary to support decisionmaking at all levels within an organisation.
3. The real value of the system lies in its ability to focus all business activities on the
requirements of its customers.

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These conclusions helped to shape the performance pyramid which can be regarded as a
modeling tool that assists in the design of new performance measurement systems, or
alternatively the re-engineering of such systems that are already in operation.
The performance pyramid (Lynch and Cross, 1991)

BALANCED SCORECARD
The Balanced Scorecard was developed by Kaplan and Norton as an attempt to counter a
rather narrow-minded approach to performance management that relied too heavily on
financial measures. The Balanced Scorecard approach relies on the organisation defining
key dimensions of performance for which discreet yet linked measures can be reported. The
following categories, or perspectives, are measured:

Customers
Internal Process
Learning and growth
Financial

The balanced scorecard depicted above is a carefully selected set of quantifiable measures
obtained from an organisations strategy. The measures selected represent a communication
tool to employees and external stakeholders the outcomes and performance drivers by which
the organisation will achieve its mission and strategic objectives.
A framework is developed within each of the four perspectives that helps describe the key
elements of strategy; the framework is made up of:

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Objectives
Measures
Targets
Initiatives

Mission
Customer
How do customers see
us?

Financial

Internal Processes

How do we look to our


shareholders?

Which business
processes must we
excel at?

Vision &
Strategy

Innovation
&Learning
How do we enable
ourselves to improve,
grow &create value?

Customer Perspective
Two key questions need to be asked here:
Who are our target customers?
What is our value proposition in serving them?
Example measures could include

Specifications (customer driven): Product quality (restaurant) & service quality


Service: Responsiveness & customer satisfaction surveys
Market share: Product/service mix & Innovations and competency

Internal Process Perspective


What are the key processes which we must excel at in order to continue to add value for
customers? Service development and delivery, partnering with the community, and reporting
are examples that could be used.

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Learning and Growth Perspective


There will normally be a gap between current organisational infrastructure of employee skills,
information systems, and organisational culture and the level necessary to achieve the results
that are desired.
The measures that are used and designed in this perspective will help close the gap.
Employee skills, employee satisfaction, education training, internal rewards and recognition
are examples of such measures.
Financial Perspective
The measures in this perspective tell us whether our strategy execution and implementation,
detailed through measures in the other perspectives, leads to improved bottom-line results.
Typical examples include shareholder value increase, gearing.

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TABLE OF POTENTIAL SCORECARD MEASURES


Generic
Health care
Airlines
Banking
Financial
Strength
(Looking Back)

Customer
Service &
Satisfaction
(Looking from
the outside in)

Internal
Operating
Efficiency
(Looking from
the inside out)

Learning and
Growth
(Looking
ahead)

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% of earned
income
Income growth
Operating
surplus
Cash balances
Reserves

Patient census
Unit
profitability
funds raised
for capital
improvements
Cost per care
Percent of
revenue new
programmes

Customer
Satisfaction
Customer
retention
Quality customer
service
Income from new
products/services

Patient
Satisfaction
survey
Patient
retention
Patient referral
rate
Admittance of
discharge
timeliness
Medical plan
awareness
Weekly patient
complaints
Patient loads
Breakthroughs
in treatments
and medicines
Infection rates
Readmission
rate
Length of stay

Delivery time
Cost
Process quality
Error rates on
processes
Supplier
Satisfaction

Employee Skill
level
Training
availability
Employee
satisfaction
Job retention
Amount of
unpaid overtime
worked

Training hours
per caregiver
Number if peer
reviewed
papers
published
Employee
turnover rate

Revenue/cost
per available
passenger
mile
Mix of freight
Mix of full fare
To discounted
Average age
of fleet
Available seat
miles and
related yields
Lost bag
reports
per 10 000
passengers
Denied
boarding rate
Flight
cancellation
rate Customer
complaints
filed with the
DOT
Load factors
(percentage of
seats
occupied)
Utilisation
factors on
aircraft and
personnel
On-time
performance

Outstanding
loan balances
Deposit
balances
Non- interest
income

Employee
absenteeism
Worker safety
statistics
Performance
appraisals
completed
Training
programmes
hours per
employee

Test results
from training
knowledge of
product
offerings, sales
and service
Employee
satisfaction
survey

Customer
retention
Number of
new
Customers
Number of
products per
customer
Face time
spent between
loan officers
and customers
Sales calls to
potential
customers
Thank You
calls or cards
to new and
existing
customers
Cross selling
statistics

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PERFORMAMCE PRISM
The performance prism was devised by Cranfield University and is one that considers all
organisational stakeholders, without necessarily focusing on one group. The organisation
considers what its stakeholders need and want from the organisation, and consequently what
the organisation needs and wants from its stakeholders.
There are five facets to The Performance Prism, namely
v Stakeholder satisfaction
v Stakeholder contribution
v Strategies
v Processes
v Capabilities

The Performance Prism is distinct from other models in that:


It is stakeholder driven, and not strategy driven.
The concept of stakeholders is more inclusive, and does not just consider shareholders and
customers
Success is seen as based on successful partnerships and inter-relationships between the
organisation and stakeholders
Measures can be generated and used for all levels within an organisation
When designing the prism, the five facets referred to above prompt specific questions (and
answers), namely
Stakeholder satisfaction Who are the key stakeholders, what do they want and
need?
Strategies What strategies do we need to put in place to satisfy the wants and
needs of our key stakeholders?
Processes What critical processes do we need to put in place to enable us to
execute our strategies?
Capabilities What capabilities do we need to put in place to allow us to operate,
maintain and enhance our processes?
Stakeholder contribution What contributions do we want and need from our
stakeholders if we are to maintain and develop these capabilities?

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FITZGERALD AND MOON BUILDING BLOCKS


Fitzgerald and Moon have developed an approach to performance measurement that is based
on the three building blocks of dimensions, standards and rewards.

Dimensions are those aspects of performance that need to be measured. These


are determined by the key factors that determine the success of the organisation
in achieving its objectives.
Standards are the benchmarks or targets for the measures identified for the
different dimensions.
Rewards are the incentives given to managers who achieve the standards.

The dimensions of performance


In developing this model a number of generic dimensions of performance were identified.

The evaluation of organisational performance involves posing four basic questions:

What has happened?

Why has it happened?

Is it going to continue?

What are we going to do about it?

Performance measurement is traditionally used to provide an answer to the first of these


questions, but it can be developed to give insights that help answer the other three questions.
Organisational performance has six generic dimensions. Measures can be developed to
provide appropriate impressions for each of these.

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The first of these are considered to relate to downstream results that is they describe
what has actually been achieved in the past while not giving material insights into what might
happen in the future.
The other four dimensions might be considered to relate to upstream determinants in that
they provide indicators for the ability to achieve results in the future.

The selection of performance measures to be used for a business, business sector or


manager should be determined by the nature of the organisation and an identification of the
key factors that determine the success of the organisation in achieving its objectives.
A framework for measuring performance
The dimensions of performance
The list below identifies the generic dimensions of performance. The first two of these relate
to downstream results, the other four to upstream determinants. For example, a new product
innovation will not impact on profit, cash flow and market share achieved in the past but a
high level of innovation provides an indicator of how profit, cash flow and market share will
move in the future. If innovation is the driver or determinant of future performance, it is a key
success factor.
Performance dimension

Type of measure

Competitiveness

Relative market share

Financial performance

Turnover growth

Quality of service

Product reliability

Flexibility

Delivery time

Resource utilisation

Productivity

Innovation

New product numbers

Standards
Consideration of standards involves the use of concepts including ownership, achievability,
and equity.

Managers who participate in the setting of standards are more likely to accept and be
motivated by the standards than managers on whom standards are imposed.

An achievable standard is a better motivator than an unachievable one

Although research has been undertaken into how much stretch ought to be built into
budgets.
When setting standards across an organisation, care should be undertaken to ensure that
all managers have equally challenging standards.

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Rewards
Consideration of rewards involves use of concepts including clarity, motivation and
controllability.
Goal clarity contributes to motivation, e.g. a standard of achieving 4 product innovations
per year might be a more effective motivator than giving a high profile to product innovation.

The actual means of motivation may involve performance related salary bonuses, an
assessment scheme point score or access to promotion channels.
Managers will be better motivated if they actually control the factors contributing to
achievement of the measures and standards on which their rewards are based

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Traditional Costing versus Target Costing


Traditional (or cost-plus) costing and target costing are the most commonly used methods for
pricing goods and services. The two methods share some similarities and also exhibit some
differences. Businesses choose the method that is most appropriate for their market, product
mix and position in an industry.
Background
Traditional or cost-plus costing has been around for many decades, much longer than target
costing. Most businesses prefer it.
Target costing was developed in the 1960s by market and cost researchers working for
Toyota. Target costing is still most widely practised in and most closely associated with Japan.
Many of Japan's leading manufacturers, such as Nissan, Toshiba and Toyota, are known for
their devotion to target costing.
Methodology
Traditional costing involves first determining the total cost of the product (adding together
direct, indirect and fixed costs of the total production run, then calculating a per-unit cost and
adding an amount for expected profit (called the profit margin). In target costing, the profit
margin is subtracted from a set market price to determine a target cost. Then the production
procedures are centred on this cost, target costing going in the opposite direction of traditional
costing.
Benefits
Each method has benefits. Businesses like traditional costing for its simplicity. Little data is
required initially for cost-plus pricing, and later adjustments to the price can be made more
easily than with target costing. Target costing is praised for its efficiency and focus on keeping
costs low.
Drawbacks
Drawbacks of traditional costing include its tendency to underestimate costs and overestimate
profits, leading to wasteful spending and unprofitable products. It is also criticised for
inefficiency. Target costing is criticised for its complexity and rigidity. It requires much more
attention to the production life cycle. Traditional costing is better suited to process-oriented
businesses that use continuous production. Target costing is better suited to assemblyoriented businesses, such as car manufacturing.
Target costing is a modern technique of cost control. It is a reverse costing technique in which
selling price is determined by read the market environment and then the desire profit margin
is deducted from the selling price.
Traditional System
In the traditional system first the budget is prepared and then the production starts. After the
production total cost is calculated. From the calculated cost the desire profit is deducted and
a selling price is determined. The difference is notice by comparing the budgeted and actual
results of cost which is known as variance.

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A target cost is a cost estimate derived by deducting a desired profit margin from a competitive
market price. It is the opposite of conventional cost plus pricing and is referred as price minus
costing. Target costing does not focus on finding what a new product does cost; instead it
focuses on finding what a new product should cost.
Cost reduction must be in a way that does not affect quality because if quality is damaged
target costing plan will immediately fail.
Target costing process
A 5-step approach is adopted in order to carry out the target costing process.
Step # 1
Estimate a selling price at which a product could be sold.
Step # 2
Then estimate the desired profit margin.
Step # 3
Deduct the profit margin from the selling price to arrive at target cost.
Step # 4
Calculate the estimate cost of the product and compare it with target costing.
Step # 5
Difference is known now as the cost gap that needs to be closed.
For example, if the selling price of the product is $25 and the desired profit margin is $5. Then,
the target cost would be $25-$5 = $20. The real cost of the product came out to be $22. Now,
the cost gap calculated would be $20-$22 = -$2. This negative $2 or the cost gap of $2 needs
to be reduced as the selling price is less than the real cost of the product.
Target costing overview:

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TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT (TQM)


TQM is a philosophy of quality management that originated in Japan in the
1950s, it seeks to integrate the quality management efforts of all groups in an organisation
and is considered to be a significant factor in Japanese global business success.
The basic principle of TQM is that costs of prevention (getting things right first time) are less
than the costs of correction. This is contrasted with the traditional approach which takes the
view that that less than 100% quality is acceptable as the costs of reaching 100% outweigh
the benefits.
There are four categories of TQM costs
Prevention costs
Costs incurred in preventing the production of products that do not conform to specification.
They include the costs of preventive maintenance, quality planning & training & the extra costs
of acquiring high quality raw materials.
Appraisal costs
Costs incurred to ensure that materials & products meet quality conformance standards. They
include the costs of inspecting purchased parts, work in process & finished goods, quality
audits & field tests.
Internal failure costs
Costs associated with materials & products that feel to meet quality standards. They include
costs incurred before the product is despatched to the customer, such as the costs of scrap,
repair, downtime & work stoppages caused by defects.

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External failure costs


Costs incurred when products or services fail to conform to requirements or satisfy customer
needs after they have been delivered. They include the costs of handling customer
complaints, warranty replacement, repairs of returned products & the costs arising from a
damaged company reputation. Costs within this category can have a dramatic impact on
future sales.
Opportunity costs
Advocates of TQM argue that the impact of less than 100% quality in terms of lost potential
for future sales also has to be taken into account.
TQM IMPLEMENTATION
In any implementation there are two things going on. First is the process being implemented,
in this case the TQM process and secondly the process of implementation itself which is a
process of change management. You have already covered the management of change.
TQM and the management of change
To ensure successful implementation of a TQM programme it is important to use the tools of
TQM in the process. Because TQM is process oriented the best way to change is to set up
process-management teams who are tasked with solving real business problems. To do this
it is necessary to align the team-roles and responsibilities with the process with which they are
dealing. In this way the behaviours and attitudes are changed as a result of doing something
practical and not the other way round.
This technique of process-alignment has seven distinct steps:
1. Gain commitment to change through the organisation of the top team. The top team must
function as a team and if they do not some team-building training via workshops should
be carried out. They should discuss and agree a broad view of what changes are needed,
what must be improved and what the main business problems are.
2. Develop a shared mission of vision of the business of what change is required. This stage
is the development of a mission statement that will help a co-ordinated flow of analysis of
processes that cut across existing organisational boundaries. The mission should consist
of an overarching purpose to which all stakeholders can agree, a set of core values,
overarching strategies and the sorts of behaviours, firmly grounded in TQM philosophy,
based on the purpose, values and strategies.
3. Define the SMART objectives, which must be agreed by the team, as being the quantifiable
indicators of success. They should be tightly bound to the mission statement
4. Develop the mission into its critical success factors (CSFs) to move it forward. The CSFs
are what the organisation must accomplish if it is to achieve its mission. They can include
things such as; motivated, skilled people; right-first-time suppliers; products that meet
market needs; and so on. The CSFs have been achieved when their Key Performance
Indicators (KPI) are met.
5. Break down the CSFs into the key processes and gain process ownership. All the
processes necessary to ensure a CSF is achieved should be listed (using a verb-object
structure i.e. research the market)
6. Break down the critical processes into the sub-processes, activities and tasks and form
improvement teams around these. For example a business services company may have
as part of its mission the objective to Gain and maintain a position as the UKs foremost
business service company in the field of management training. One CSF that relates to
this would be Obtain a high level of awareness of our company in the market place. One

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of the critical processes is to Promote, advertise and communicate the companys


business capability. One of the sub-processes could be Prepare the company
information pack. One of the activities relating to the sub-process would be Prepare one
of the subject booklets for the pack. One of the tasks necessary for this is To prepare the
copy for the booklet.
Processes and teams can be linked as follows:
Quality council
Mission, CSFs, critical processes
Process quality teams
critical processes
Quality Improvement teams (QITs)
Sub-processes and tasks.
Quality circles/individuals
Tasks
The next step is to determine measurements of performance for all the elements from
process to task. These measurements should bear in mind the customer for the output.
So for example the leaflet writing task would need to contain clear objectives and benefits
as well as the programme.
7. Monitor and adjust the process alignment in response to difficulties in the change process.

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ACCA ARTICLES: NOT AN EXHAUSTIVE LIST, CHECK THE ACCA SITE


1. Activity Based Management, N Ryan, Apr-14
2. Human Resource Management & The Appraisal System, N Ryan, Jan-14
3. Benchmarking, N Ryan, Sep-12
4. The Performance Prism, N Ryan, Mar-12
5. EVA v. profit based measures, part 2, N Ryan, Jul-11
6. EVA v. profit based measures, part 1, N Ryan, Jul-11
7. The risks of uncertainty, M Pogue, Oct-09
8. Not-For-Profit Organisations, R Souster, Sep-09, Oct-09
9. Transfer Pricing, K Garrett, Oct-09
10. The risks of uncertainty, M Pogue, Apr-09, Oct-09
11. Accounting And Organisational Cultures, G Morgan, Nov-08, Dec-08
12. Business failure, prediction and prevention, M Pogue, Jun-08, Jul-08
13. Economic Value Added, Creating Value, S Johnson & M Bamber, Oct-07
14. Critical Success Factors, J Stone, Aug-06
15. Defining Managers Information Requirements, J Stone, Aug-06
16. Business Strategy And Performance Models, S Johnson, Apr-06
17. The pyramids &pitfalls of performance measurement,SJohnson, Sep-05
18. Performance measures to support competitive advantage, GMorgan, Aug-05
19. Beyond budgeting, S Johnson, Mar-05
20. Management control - a pre-requisite for survival, SJohnson, Oct-04
21. Environmental management accounting, SJohnson, Jun-04
22. Just-in-time operations and Backflush accounting, SJohnson, May-04
23. Budgetary control - the organisational aspects, MTayles, Dec-08

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ACTIVITY ONE: SOLUTION


Contingency tables
Purchased
Demand kg
60
100
125
175

50

100

150

200

30
30
30
30

20
60
60
60

0
40
65
90

-20
20
45
95

Minimum

30

20

-20

Maximum

30

60

90

95

Maximin

30

Contribution

Maximax

95

Minimax regret
Purchased kg
Demand kg
60
100
125
175

50

100

150

200

0
30
35
65

10
0
5
35

30
20
0
5

50
40
20
0

Qty purchased

50

100

150

200

Max regret

65

35

30

50

Minimax

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30

Mahmood Reza on behalf of Knowledge Grab

ACTIVITY TWO: SOLUTION


Provide Inc. and Receive Inc: Transfer Pricing
Containers
36,000
9,000
27,000

Provide Inc.: Total output


Sales to Receive Inc.
Sales outside group
a. Monthly profit at existing sales level
Receive Inc.

Sales
Costs: Materials
Costs: Other
Contribution
Fixed costs
Profit

Provide Inc.

Sales
Costs: Materials
Contribution
Fixed costs
Profit

Revised sales levels


Total output of Provide Inc.
Receive Inc.
Sales outside group

Qty
Containers
9,000
9,000
9,000

Unit data
$
30.00
14.00
5.00

Sales
$
270,000
(126,000)
( 45,000)
99,000
( 60,000)
39,000

Qty
Unit data
Containers $
36,000
14.00
36,000
7.00

Sales
$
504,000
(252,000)
252,000
( 80,000)
172,000

Existing
Containers
36,000
9,000
27,000

Revised
Containers
42,750
15,750
27,000

Change
%
75.0%
0.0%

b. Monthly profit at revised sales level


Receive Inc.

Provide Inc.

Sales
Costs: Materials
Costs: Other
Contribution
Fixed costs
Profit
Initial profit b/f
Profit movement

Sales
Costs: Materials
Contribution
Fixed costs
Profit
Initial profit b/f
Profit movement

Total (consolidated) Revised total profit

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Qty
Containers
15,750
15,750
15,750

Unit data
$
24.00
14.00
5.00

Sales
$
378,000
(220,500)
( 78,750)
78,750

( 60,000)
18,750
39,000
( 20,250)
Qty
Drums
42,750
42,750

Unit data
$
14.00
7.00

Sales
$
598,500
(299,250)
299,250

( 80,000)
219,250
172,000
47,250
238,000
Mahmood Reza on behalf of Knowledge Grab

Initial total profit b/f


Total profit movement

211,000
27,000

c. Spare capacity of Provide Inc. (52,000 36,000)


Additional output of Provide Inc.

Containers
16,000
6,750

Receive Inc: loss of profits


Receive Inc.: loss of profits/container

-$20,250
-$3

Provide Inc.: existing variable cost

Per container
$7

Set transfer price above $7 per drum and below $14

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ACTIVITY THREE: SOLUTION


Global Inc.: Project assessment performance measures

Net book value (NBV)

Investment
Year 0
Year 1
$m
$m
66.0
66.0

Year 2
$m
44.0

Year 3
$m
22.0

Sales volume: million


Unit selling price
Sales: million
Contribution
Incremental costs

1.8
$60.00
$108.0
$64.8
-$40.0

2.0
$60.00
$120.0
$72.0
-$45.0

2.5
$60.00
$150.0
$90.0
-$50.0

EBITDA: million
(Contribution less incremental costs)

$24.8

$27.0

$40.0

Working Capital (WC)


Inventory
Receivables
Payables

-$5.0
-$5.0
$3.0

Net operational cash flows (NCF)


(EBITDA less WC investment

$17.8

$27.0

$47.0

Less: depreciation
Profit
(NCF minus depreciation)

-$22.0
-$4.2

-$22.0
$5.0

-$22.0
$25.0

Imputed interest at 12% on NBV


(NBV b/f cost of capital)

-$7.9

-$5.3

-$2.6

Residual income: straight line


(Profit minus interest)

-$12.1

-$0.3

$22.4

Return on investment: straight line


(Profit NBV b/f)

-6.4%

11.4%

113.6%

$5.0
$5.0
-$3.0

Annuity depreciation approach


Initial investment: million
Annuity factor 12%
Equivalent annual cost

Net book value (NBV) b/f


Imputed interest at 12% on NBV
(NBV b/f cost of capital)
Annuity depreciation
(EAC minus interest)

Net operational cash flows (NCF)

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$66.0
2.402
$27.5
Year 1
$m
66.0

Year 2
$m
44.0

Year 3
$m
22.0

-7.9

-5.3

-2.6

19.6

22.2

24.8

Year 1
$m
17.8

Year 2
$m
27.0

Year 3
$m
47.0

Mahmood Reza on behalf of Knowledge Grab

Annuity depreciation
Profit
(NCF minus depreciation)

-19.6

-22.2

-24.8

-1.8

4.8

22.2

Imputed interest at 12% on NBV


(NBV b/f cost of capital)

-7.9

-5.3

-2.6

Residual income: annuity depreciation


(Profit minus interest)

-9.7

-0.5

19.5

Return on investment: annuity depreciation


(Profit NBV b/f)

-2.7%

7.3%

33.6%

Year 1
$m

Year 2
$m

Year 3
$m

$17.8

$27.0

$47.0

NPV
Investment

Year 0
$m
-$66.0

Net operational cash flows


Total net cash flows
Discount factor: 12%

-$66.0
1.000

$17.8
0.893

$27.0
0.797

$47.0
0.712

Present value
NPV

-$66.0
$4.9

$15.9

$21.5

$33.5

Calculate IRR

Year 0
Year 1
Year 2
Year 3

Cash flow
$m
-66.0
17.8
27.0
47.0

Discount
factor
12.0%
1.000
0.893
0.797
0.712

PV
$m
-66.0
15.9
21.5
33.5

Discount
factor
20.0%
1.000
0.833
0.694
0.579

4.9
IRR

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12% +

(4.9
) (20-12)%
(4.9-(-5.2)

PV
$m
-66.0
14.8
18.8
27.2
-5.2
15.9%

Mahmood Reza on behalf of Knowledge Grab