Read this short article to learn around the definition, stperiods, objectives and benefits of Activity Based Costing (ABC).


ABC has actually been identified by CIMA as ‘expense attribution to cost devices on the basis of advantage received from indirect tasks e.g. ordering setting up, assuring quality’. According to Horngren, Foster and Datar ‘ABC is not an different costing device to task costing or procedure costing. Rather ABC is a method to occurring the price numbers used in job costing or procedure costing units. The distinctive function of ABC is its emphasis on tasks as the fundamental price objects. In comparison most traditional viewpoints supplied in task and procedure costing units count on general purpose accountancy units, not tailored to the activities found in individual organisations. The ABC method has actually the potential to provide managers through information they find even more useful for costing purposes’.

Activity Based Costing is based on the belief that in production process tbelow are assorted tasks which give rise to costs. ABC creates a attach between activities and also products by assigning a expense of tasks to commodities based upon an individual product.

According to Dansby and Lawrence ‘In ABC prices are not initially traced to departments. Instead, costs are initially traced to activities and then to products: Activities resulting in overheads (or expense drivers) are determined. These tasks are later provided as a base for allocating overhead costs to products.

Introduction of ABC System:

ABC device assumes that tasks reason expenses and also also that products develop needs for activities. The device recognizes that businesses should understand also the factors that drive each significant activity, the expense tasks and also how activities relate to commodities.

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The style of ABC mechanism involves following stages:

(1) Identifying tasks i.e. identifying significant activities that take location in an organisation.

(2) Assigning prices to task price centres i.e. assigning costs to cost pools or price centres for each activity.


(3) Selecting appropriate cost chauffeurs i.e. identifying the determinants that affect the expenses of specific activities.

(4) Assigning the cost of tasks to commodities i.e. assigning such expense according to each products demand also for activities.

These stperiods may be taken into consideration in detail:

1. Identifying Activities:

The first stage is to identify the practical locations or major activities connected in the production. Examples of activities encompass machine associated activities, divert labour related activities and also assorted support tasks prefer ordering, receiving, product taking care of, packing, despatching. Various activities are figured out by transferring out task analysis. The tasks might be basically autumn into four categories as suggested by Cooper and also Kaplan’.


(a) Unit Level Activities or Primary Activities:

The price of major tasks (favor use of instraight materials and also consumables, experimentation of every item produced) might be correlated to variety of systems produced (i.e. on volume-basis).

(b) Batch Level Activities:

These are manufacturing support tasks (favor product ordering, machine set-up costs, inspection of products etc). The price of such tasks is moved by number of batches of units developed.


(c) Product Level Activities:

Activities favor making of the product, maintaining technical illustrations of product, tasks upto date, declaring of a certain product are referred to as product level. The price of these activities is moved by the development of a brand-new product line and also its maintenance.

(d) Facility Level Activities:

Certain activities cannot be concerned a certain product, instead might be pertained to particular framework choose preserving the building, security of plant, salaries of production manager, advertisement to promote organisation.


It may be detailed that unit level tasks and also facility level activities are the very same as those in conventional absorption costing which will certainly be allocated on physical volume basis, ABC will certainly be more useful if tbelow is significant size of batch level and product level tasks.

2. Assigning Costs to Activity Cost Centres:

The second stage needs that a price centre (additionally referred to as a price pool) be created for each task. After the activities have actually been determined the expense of resources consumed over a specified period must be assigned to each task. These prices will have to be apportioned on some suitable basis. For example the total expenses of all set ups might constitute one cost centre for all setup related expenses.

3. Selecting Ideal Cost Drivers:

The third phase of developing ABC device is to identify the components that influence the price of a specific activity. The term cost-driver is supplied to describe the significant determinant of the cost of the task. The most suitable price driver in each activity under sensible areas have to be determined. A expense driver is any kind of variable that impacts expenses.

The main useful locations are:


(i) Material Management

(ii) Stores Management

(iii) Production Management

(iv) Quantity Control Management


(v) Personnel Management

(vi) Sales Management

(vii) Repairs and also Maintenance

(viii) Administration and also

(ix) Public Relations.



4. Assigning the Cost of the Activities to Products:

The final stage is to trace the price of the activities to assets according to each product’s demand also for these activities making use of price drivers as a meacertain of demand. A product’s demand for the activities is measured by the number of transactions it geneprices for the cost driver. The cost driver have to be measurable in a means that permits it to be established with individual assets.

Purposes and Benefits of ABC:

As compared to traditional overhead costing, Activity Based Costing gives even more exact expense indevelopment for commodities. ABC gives a really various perspective of the expense framework. The supervisors of manufacturing are guided to readjust their pricing plans as they determine that high volume assets had actually been over costed and low volume products under costed.

ABC has actually been accepted as exceptionally advantageous for product costing wright here manufacturing overheads are high in relation to straight cost, wbelow there is diversity in the product variety, wbelow assets consume various amount of overhead and also where usage of overhead is not basically pushed by their volume.

In brief following are major benefits of using ABC technique:

1. ABC helps to alleviate expenses by giving coherent indevelopment for cost-administration. It helps in making the best decision.

2. ABC approach provides due prominence to non-manufacturing cost which constitute an extensive percent of complete expense. For instance, in instance of a variety of assets marketing and declaring prices constitute a big portion of expense. These overheads have the right to be alsituated easily making use of ABC bereason the partnership between such prices and their reasons have the right to be identified easily. Traditionally such non-manufacturing prices have actually been alsituated under volume basis and thus high volume products have actually been overvalued.

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3. ABC approach offers precise and also reliable expense information. These cost indevelopment are necessary for recent viewpoints in productivity development like Total Quality Management (TQM) and Business Process Reengineering.

4. ABC permits the monitoring in formulating an reliable pricing policy while fixing prices.

5. Cost of each task is determined through the aid of ABC. Tright here is accuracy in instraight cost-alplace to commodities. This strategy is advantageous in make or buys decisions and also transfer pricing.

Thus ABC has attracted a significant amount of interemainder because it offers not just a basis for calculating more precise product cost however likewise a system for regulating overhead prices. By collecting and reporting on the significant activities in which a service engperiods, it is feasible to understand also and control expenses more properly. It is the location of cost-administration rather than product costing, wbelow activity-based units may have their biggest potential.