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Riordan Manufacturing Case Study

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Budgeting Assignment

A company’s budget serves as a guideline in planning and committing costs in order to meet tactical and strategic goals. Tactical goals such as providing budgetary costs for daily operations, and strategic objectives that include R&D, production, marketing, and distribution are all part of the budgeting process. Serving as a guideline rather than being set in stone, the budget is a snapshot of manager’s “best thinking at the time it is prepared.” (Marshall, 2003, p.496) The budget is a method in which to reign-in discretionary spending, and will likely show variances between what costs have been anticipated and what costs are actually incurred.

The Budget Process

Budgetary planning may differ between organizations. Single-period budgets and rolling budgets have methodologies that provide advantages and disadvantages that may make one budget time frame better than another. A single-period may require less time in planning during a fiscal year, but is less accurate than a rolling budget that is continuously planned on a repetitive basis. In either case, budgets are planned in advance in order for a company to operate profitably, and less so to have “actual results equal budgeted results.” (p. 496)

The budget process, according to Marshall, is to “develop and communicate” how an organization’ economic, industry, and organizational strategies will be effected within the budgeted time frame. (p.497) People within the organization from planners, economists, and managers contribute facets of the strategic budget process in order to meet organizational needs. Upper management then typically approves those budgets. The operating budget is the forecast of activity that encompasses the results of the budget process. Within the operating budget, an organization may see:

• Forecasts for sales and revenues.

• Forecasts for purchases and production.

• Forecasts for operating expenses.

• Income, cash, and balance sheet budget statement forecasts. (p.498)

The budget process may start with a sales forecast that describes “expected revenues from groups of products.” (p. 485) Total revenues can be calculated based on a number of factors that include both the product markup

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