Author: Lea Patterson

Managing in a Period of Stagflation

Stagflation: An economic situation in which prices keep rising but economic activity does not increase (Cambridge Dictionary) TLDR High Inflation hasn’t been around since the 70’s and 80’s. During periods of high inflation focus on defending margins and cashflow. This requires sophisticated and detailed Activity-Based Cost models (which were prolific in the 80’s and 90’s). […]

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Combat Climate Change! – Cost + Carbon Accounting

Identify the most economical path to carbon emissions reductions! In order to combat climate change countries and companies around the world are all working on plans to reduce their emissions.  For the last decade, a number of companies have been voluntarily reporting their emissions, unfortunately the reporting hasn’t led to any significant reduction in emissions.  […]

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Steam Engines, Tea Sets & Railroads – A brief history of Activity-Based Costing

TLDR! Activity-Based Costing (ABC) concepts have been around for yonks! (Australian/British slang for a long time) Ever since the 1770’s. ABC concepts have been largely ignored for yonks! ABC was formalized in the 1980’s. ABC is needed more than even now given the increasing complexity of modern business models and the growth of overhead to […]

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Don’t only use Student Credit Hours to allocate Cost!

Financial analysts use a wide range of cost allocation methods, including cost per student credit hour, in universities to calculate the cost of delivering courses and programs.  I will show you why this is fraught with danger and could cause more harm than good! In recent posts I have used data from our Australian demonstration […]

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Costing is NOT Financial Accounting!

Quick Thoughts Costing is Management Accounting. Costing requires Operations and/or Engineering expertise. Cost is modelled. e.g. Activity-Based Costing. Cost comes in many forms – Financial Cost, Environmental Cost, Social Cost. It’s important to understand what CAUSES cost so you can manage it appropriately. Cost is calculated by identifying where resources are used to undertake work […]

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Higher Ed Course Break-Even Analysis

In times of financial crisis, low enrolment courses are usually targets for removal. But removing the wrong courses could lead to a worse financial position! Due to the financial impacts of the current pandemic, institutions are taking a serious look at all of their programs and courses to determine their financial performance. The typical targets […]

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What can we do that you can’t?

Last week we were invited to present our regular solution to a university technical team. Lots of analytical and IT skills in the group and one of the attendees asked a very important question “What can you do that we can’t?”. What a great question and one that we should be answering all the time […]

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Higher Ed Cost Management via Mapped Resources

Everything you do has some type of cost associated with it. If you want to drive to the shops, you need a vehicle which you either purchased with cash, or you are paying off a loan, or you leased the vehicle. Then the vehicle requires fuel, oil, water and associated maintenance. All the things you […]

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