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Finance and Accounting for Nonfinancial Managers

All too often, a manager’s performance is measured by how effectively they oversee departmental budgets. This course transforms financial and accounting concepts into decision-making tools you can use successfully. You learn to apply the fundamentals of finance to improve budget management, increase potential profits, and assess the financial performance of business activities.

Learning Objectives

You Will Learn How To

  • Integrate financial concepts and policies into the management decision and budgeting process
  • Evaluate the financial performance of companies
  • Employ cash flow techniques to analyse business status
  • Calculate the cost of business activities
  • Control business operations through effective budget management

Course Content

Course Outline

Why Finance Matters

  • Demystifying financial jargon
  • Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)
  • Public vs. private financial methodologies
  • Accountability and responsibility

The Key Building Blocks of Financial Control

Decoding the income statement

  • Differentiating income, operating and capital expense items
  • Putting the pieces together to measure profit and business success
  • When a sale becomes a sale: sales recognition

Analysing the balance sheet

  • Evaluating the worth of an established business
  • Distinguishing between fixed and current assets and liabilities
  • Defining depreciation and amortisation
  • Linking the income statement to the balance sheet
  • Shareholder equity

Cash Flow: The Lifeblood of Organisations

Making the key connection between business activity and cash flow

  • Differentiating between cash flow, profit and net worth
  • Connecting cash management to line management
  • Credit and cash flow
  • How much cash is enough?

The importance of depreciation and amortisation

  • How depreciation impacts your budget over time
  • Methods for calculating depreciation
  • Advantages and disadvantages of various key methods
  • Impacting the management budget

Managing a Profit or Cost Centre

Selecting the best costing method for your situation

  • Absorption, marginal, activity-based costing
  • Determining costs in service businesses
  • Avoiding costing traps

The unique features of project costing

  • Estimating project duration and future costs
  • Leveraging debt to your advantage
  • Anticipating problems using cost control
  • Making estimates based on incomplete information

Choosing projects that optimise shareholders' interests

  • Making the financial case using ROI
  • Advantages and disadvantages of ROI, payback, discounted cash flow (DCF) and NPV techniques
  • Selecting viable projects

A Manager's Guide to Budgeting

Recognising that budgets are more than numbers

  • Budgeting as sociology, not accounting
  • The politics of getting a budget approved
  • The relationship between a well-designed budget and how others measure your performance
  • Managing effectively within budgeting constraints

Comparing budget approaches

  • Top-down
  • Bottom-up

Types of budgets

  • Incremental
  • Zero-based
  • Rolling
  • Others
  • Developing the budget numbers

Budgeting as a planning and control tool

  • Using the budget to control the business
  • Limiting factors
  • Budget process and coordination
  • Forecasting sales revenues and expenses
  • Adjusting the budget to reality

Pulling It All Together

  • Applying financial tools and concepts in the real world
  • Evaluating a company's health through its annual report
  • Comparing public and private sector practices
  • Recognising potential traps in creative accounting

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You may prefer an online course if you are looking for a flexible and cost-effective solution. Online courses allow you to study at your own pace, at a time that suits you.

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