Brandy Amidon, CPA, the CFO at South Carolina marketing and creative agency Brains on Fire, found a way to hold employees’ interest and get them to care more about the organization’s profitability.
Performance and cost management, analysis and control
This article examines how controllers can address technology issues, budgetary constraints, and more.
The SEC proposed rules that would require public companies to disclose how their executive compensation relates to the company’s financial performance.
For a manager, few things are more difficult than delivering honest performance feedback to an employee. And far too many managers don’t give feedback at all. Fortunately, there are ways to address performance review problems. Success lies in the execution of these simple ideas. Define the culture of your organization,
Get a B on a math test, and you understand how that grade was determined: You got 88% of the answers correct. Get a B on an art project, and you’re wondering exactly what could have been better or what the instructor was looking for. CFOs would rather be graded
As companies face a thinning margin for decision error, the ability to use business analytics effectively—everything from correlation, segmentation, clustering, regression analysis, as well as forecasting and predicting outcomes—is becoming mission-critical. There is now a strong need to gain insights, foresight, and inferences from the treasure chest of raw transactional
Those who have worked for a company that struggled during the recent financial crisis know the scenario all too well: To cut costs, the business lays off workers. The survivors are grateful to keep their jobs and assume extra duties to keep things humming. Experts are now taking a closer
It’s no secret that CPAs take pride in their standing as trusted advisers to their clients. What’s not so well known is that CPAs can gain—and in many cases, literally profit—from the advice of those same clients. Client advisory boards offer CPA firms and other businesses the opportunity to deepen
Editor's note: Also read "Board of education: CPA firms, businesses can profit from clients' advice," in the Jan. 2012 issue of the JofA. Here is a step-by-step client advisory board implementation plan developed by the AICPA’s Private Companies Practice Section. More client advisory board tools are available to PCPS members
Financial close systems, processes, people and their interconnectivity can be complex, but successful improvements to the process can be achieved by introducing some simple building blocks that are inexpensive to implement. Regardless of company size or complexity, all successful financial close processes require continuous communication, comprehensive documentation and a flexible,
Coping with a downturn often means restructuring for companies. Every restructuring has many moving parts—including layoffs, impairments, asset revaluations and debt relief. To engineer a favorable outcome, stay ahead of events, says Scott Davis, a partner in the Corporate Advisory and Restructuring Services practice at Grant Thornton. He offers these
In casual, everyday language, it is often said a corporation’s primary role is to generate profits. However, the primary role of a corporation is not to generate profits; it is to create shareholder value. When corporations focus their internal performance measurement systems on short-term profits or accounting returns—not shareholder value—bad
Recessions—roughly two per decade—have occurred quite regularly since World War II. Most last less than four quarters, according to International Monetary Fund data. But the depth and breadth of recessions are notoriously difficult to predict. This article focuses on what CPA financial executives have experienced in the current recession, using
All people may be created equal, but the same can’t be said for customers. Everyone knows that some customers are more profitable than others. Conversely, some are downright unprofitable. Knowing which is which is the all-important question. Despite enormous variations in profitability, many companies continue unprofitable relationships with customers, often
Harvard Business School professor Robert S. Kaplan is co-developer of both activity-based costing and the balanced scorecard. In 2006, Kaplan was elected to the Accounting Hall of Fame, and received the Lifetime Contribution Award from the Management Accounting Section of the American Accounting Association. In 2008, the Institute of Management
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Return-on-equity (ROE) is the correct profit metric to evaluate the performance of a business. However, the primary emphasis on financial ratio analysis must be on operating performance. The "advanced" version of the DuPont model remedies the original model’s failure to cleanly separate the effects of operating and financing
This second installment in a series of columns on accounting research summarizes results from the field of management and cost accounting. The 2006 through June 2007 issues of five top-tier journals in management and cost accounting research were examined. Those publications included, alphabetically, Accounting, Organizations and Society; The Accounting Review;
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY In batch processing, if costs are not isolated, high-volume customers and products tend to subsidize lower-volume ones. This article reviews different types of batch activities and how they would be handled under traditional costing and two different variations of activity-based costing (ABC). Traditional costing equally distributes overheads by
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY A REGIONAL FIRM, PLANTE & MORAN (P&M), developed and implemented a strategy called “rerecruiting,” an ongoing program based on staff recognition and appreciation, to maximize staff retention. Its turnover rate for the past decade ranks between 8% and 15% annually—well below industry standards. MANAGEMENT-CREATED WORKSHOPS explain the value
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY LEAN MANUFACTURING PRINCIPLES FOCUS on eliminating waste and producing only to meet customer demand. They also typically require a company to move from a functional division of work to work cells where all of the processes needed to manufacture a product or line occur next to each other