Managerial Accounting: Tools for Facilitating and Guiding Business Decisions

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In this course, you will explore how to use accounting to allocate resources and incentivize manager and employee behaviors in using these resources. You will also learn how financial and non-financial accounting information facilitates strategic performance measurement and how to integrate this information to continuously improve strategy.

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
• Understand the role of managerial accounting information in common business decisions
• Differentiate relevant and irrelevant information
• Avoid common pitfalls in business decisions
• Prepare a master budget and its key components
• Describe the iterative and interrelated nature of budgeting
• Evaluate capital investments via a variety of measures
• Understand how upper management uses variance analysis
• Calculate, interpret, and investigate variances
• Understand decentralization and its advantages and disadvantages
• Compute and interpret financial performance measures
• Communicate the role of non-financial measures and strategic performance measurement systems
• Identify issues associated with performance measurement and incentives
• Understand the nature and role of subjective performance evaluation

This course is part of the iMBA offered by the University of Illinois, a flexible, fully-accredited online MBA at an incredibly competitive price. For more information, please see the Resource page in this course and


Course Overview and Relevant Information for Decision Making
-In this module, you will become familiar with the course, your instructor, your classmates, and our learning environment. Decisions are at the heart of all organizations. In this module, you will also explore the nature and role of relevant information in common business decisions, and how such information facilitates these decisions and helps managers and employees avoid common pitfalls. You will also consider how the financial perspective adopted by accountants complements other, qualitative perspectives.

Budgeting for Planning and Control
-At the heart of an organization’s planning and control function is its budget. In this module, you will explore the purpose of budgeting, the role of managers and employees in budgeting, and related implications. You will also develop an organization’s budget, ultimately understanding the iterative nature among the budget’s key components: the operations, financing, and capital investments budgets.

Standard Costing and Variance Analysis
-After establishing goals, setting targets, and the budget, upper management uses variance analysis to compare, assess, and investigate differences between actual and expected performance. In this module, you will learn how upper management uses variance analysis to motivate and monitor managers and employees, how to perform variance analysis on any aspect of the organization, and ultimately understand the power of this important tool for planning and control.

Performance Measurement and Evaluation
-Accountants help implement, communicate, and evolve organizational strategy via the information they provide to owners, managers, and employees. Specifically, they help plan, monitor, and control decisions via the performance measurement, evaluation, and compensation system. In this module, you will explore many aspects of this important system, including decentralization, financial and non-financial performance measurement, strategic performance measurement systems, and subjective performance evaluation.