What Is ABC? or Activity Based Costing


What Is ABC?

Activity Based Costing (ABC) can be described as technique of working out costs of services or products using the resources which they take in. ABC can be a substitute for traditional accounting where a business’s outgoings like indirect costs including, lighting, heating as well as marketing, are assigned equal in proportion to the activity’s direct cost. It is unsatisfactory as the two activities which absorb the identical direct costs will use completely different amounts of cost. A mass-produced commercial robot, for example, may use the identical amount of job and supplies like a customized robot. However the customized robot employs much more of the enterprise engineers’ time compared to does the particular mass-produced one.
Now this difference may not be mirrored inside traditional costing systems. For this reason, a firm which makes a growing number of customized items, and bases the prices upon historic costing, could shortly get itself generating huge deficits. While latest technologies allow it to be simpler for businesses to customize items, the value of allocating roundabout costs precisely increases.
Launching the Activity Based Costing (ABC) will not be an easy process. To begin with, all business activities should be divided within their discrete parts. Together with the ABC system, such as, ABB, the Swiss-Swedish electric company, broken down their buying activity into such things as bargaining with vendors, upgrading the database, giving purchase orders as well as dealing with grievances.
The data necessary for ABC is probably not easily accessible and could need to be computed exclusively with the objective. This calls for producing innovative proportions. Corporations frequently seek the services of professionals that are experts in the spot to help these organizations get a program ready to go.
The straightforward strategy is to apply the particular ABC software program together with the company’s prevailing accounting system. The standard system may be applied as before, using the ABC framework an additional to be needed whenever particular cost information is necessary to help to make a specific decision. The introduction of the business accounting software systems made the development of the Activity Based Costing (ABC) much more achievable.
Establishing the Activity Based Costing (ABC) system is the precondition for bettering business operations as well as for any kind of re-engineering system. Several firms also have ABC information for the activities necessary for a well-balanced scorecard.
The Activity Based Costing (ABC) shot to popularity more than 30 years ago mostly due to increasing discontentment with traditional methods for allocating costs. Following a robust start up, however, the idea dropped into a length of disrepute. Actually Robert Kaplan, a professor of Harvard Business School sometimes acknowledged with being its father, has accepted that this stagnated during the 1990s. The problem lay in converting the theory to action. Most companies weren’t ready to surrender their particular traditional cost control systems for ABC.
Even so, ABC has its own satisfied clients. Chrysler, the US car maker declares that those rescued vast sums of cash through the program that’s launched during the early 1990s. The ABC revealed the real cost of particular parts which Chrysler produced was 30 times exactly what had actually been calculated, the breakthrough that convinced the company to use outsourcing for the production of several of these parts.


  1. admin

    It is not so difficult to implement ABC in any organiation, when the organization has decided to go for it. The availability of data is also not a concern in current situation where most of the organizations have one or the other form of OLTP system running.

    Most important part is our fellow professionals should understand and accept its relevance and do not spread the fear about the complexity of the subject or project.

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