variance analysis

The flexible budget variance for operating income can be determined just as any other variance. The difference between the amounts within the flexible budget and the actual expenses and revenues will need to be determined to find the variance in the operating income. For example, a company that wants to determine how production changes might alter the sales could input these variables into the flexible budget. If they typically produce 500 units, but increase their production to 700 for that period, they can use the flexible budget to determine how this might affect their sales. The company can create three budget scenarios with one comparing the same expected results at 100% of capacity, while the others may be in a range, such as 80% and 120%. The company can then use all the figures to create a new budget for the following year. Revenues and expenses are constantly adjusted in flexible budgets for current operating conditions.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of fixed and flexible budget?

Flexible or variable budgets, on the other hand, change from time to time based on changes in expenditures. The benefits to a fixed budget include greater stability, better savings, and easier future planning, while the disadvantages include reduced flexibility.

The ability to provide flexible budgets can be critical in new or changing businesses where the accuracy of estimating sales or usage my not be strong. For example, organizations are often reporting their sustainability efforts and may have some products that require more electricity than other products.

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These points make the Flexible Budget budget an appealing model for the advanced budget user. However, before deciding to switch to the flexible budget, consider the following countervailing issues. The devil’s in the details, so keep the first page high level. In budgeting meetings, McFall frequently sees people getting into minutiae that have nothing to do with the overall evolution of the budget or the financial health of the company. If you’re constantly monitoring, you can reallocate funds on the fly.

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For example, telephone may vary with changes in headcount. If so, one can integrate these other activity measures into the flexible budget model. Journal Entry for Direct Materials Variance In the current year, Mission Burrito budgeted 6,000 pounds of production and actually used 4,000 pounds. Material cost was budgeted for $5 per pound and the actual cost was $8 per pound.

Static versus Flexible Budgets

It requires careful analysis of costs and incorrect classification of costs can provide inaccurate results. For example,Figure 10.26shows a static quarterly budget for 1,500 trainers sold by Big Bad Bikes. The budget will change if there are more or fewer units sold.

Management carefully compares the budgeted numbers with the actual performance statistics to see where the company improved and where the company needs more improvement. Instead, the hope is that patterns will be observed making future cost planning easier and more accurate. In addition, a flexible budget can successfully justify increases in costs when compared to actual income. Revenue and cost needs to be compared monthly and adjustments or notes should be made. Additionally, flexible budgets have a lack of accountability to some degree since they are so fluid and open to change. Some expenditures vary with other activity measures than revenue.

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