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Cost Accounting for Shared IT Infrastructures von Brandl, Reinhard (eBook)

  • Erscheinungsdatum: 21.08.2008
  • Verlag: Gabler
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Cost Accounting for Shared IT Infrastructures

Reinhard Brandl proposes a method to derive estimates for the expected resource consumption of customer-oriented services during standard load tests. This facilitates the determination of usage-based cost allocation keys significantly. He implements the concept in a software tool kit, evaluates it in a set of experiments with multi-tier database applications, and analyzes how the method can be integrated into existing IT processes at the BMW Group. Dr. Reinhard Brandl promovierte bei Prof. Dr. Martin Bichler am Lehrstuhl für Internetbasierte Geschäftssysteme der Technischen Universität München. Während seiner Promotion war er als Doktorand am Kompetenzzentrum IT-Architekturen der BMW Group tätig.


    Format: PDF
    Kopierschutz: AdobeDRM
    Seitenzahl: 225
    Erscheinungsdatum: 21.08.2008
    Sprache: Englisch
    ISBN: 9783834996992
    Verlag: Gabler
    Größe: 3877 kBytes
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Cost Accounting for Shared IT Infrastructures

Chapter 2 IT Infrastructure Cost Allocation (S. 11-12)

2.1 IT Cost Accounting and Chargeback

2.1.1 Classification

There are several possibilities to structure the .eld of IT Cost Accounting and Chargeback. In the present context, the Management Accounting and Information Management perspective are of particular relevance. In the following, we briefly introduce both perspectives and provide references for further reading. Management Accounting supports managers in planning and controlling their operations.

In contrast to Financial Accounting, which addresses the needs of external parties (e.g., investors, creditors and tax authorities), the focus of Management Accounting lies inside the organization. The objective is to motivate and to assist managers in attaining their organizational objectives in a timely, e.cient and e.ective manner (Kaplan and Atkinson, 1998, p. 1). Management Accounting is not constrained by external reporting requirements and can be designed according to an organization's needs. Relevance is more important than objectivity and auditability. Nevertheless, the data used must be defensible and transparent to internal participants (Kaplan and Atkinson, 1998, p. 1).

One of the most important input types for Management Accounting is cost information. Costs arise from the acquisitions and use of organizational resources, such as people, equipment, materials and facilities (Kaplan and Atkinson, 1998, p. 13). Cost Accounting tracks, records and analyzes this information and reports costs associated with products or activities of the organization back to the management. Therefore, traditional costing systems implement a two-stage process. First, costs are assigned to cost centers (e.g., departments, subsidies) and, second, to cost objects (e.g., products produced by a department). Accordingly, costs can be categorized into direct and indirect costs.

Direct costs are incurred by and can be directly traced to a cost center or a cost object. Examples of direct costs are direct raw materials or direct wages. Indirect costs or overhead costs cannot be fully traced back, because they are incurred by a number of cost centers or cost objects (Owen and Law, 2005, p. 211). Costs can be further categorized into variable and .xed costs. Variable costs change in direct proportion to the production or sales volume, while .xed costs remain constant over a certain period of time. Direct and indirect costs can either be .xed or variable.

Costing systems di.er by the cost categories they take into account. In a full-cost approach, .xed and variable costs are allocated to the cost object. In a variable-cost approach, only direct costs plus variable overhead costs are allocated (Owen and Law, 2005, p. 252). The reported product costs are meant to reflect the marginal costs of manufacturing (Cooper and Kaplan, 1987, p. 205). However, not all departments (cost centers) directly produce or distribute the organization's output (cost objects). Typically, two di.erent types of departments can be distinguished: production departments and service departments. The costs of service departments should be assigned to production departments to promote cost control and e.ciency by (Kaplan and Atkinson, 1998, p. 62).

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