Activity Centered Costing (ABC) Case Study: Exxonmobil

Activity Centered Costing (ABC) Case Study: Exxonmobil


The following paper provides an analysis of the organise of an activity-based costing (ABC) for Exxon Mobil, a world oil firm. The discussion during the paper is structured as follows:

  • Setting up some sort of activity-based priced at for Exxon Mobil The first portion presents a summary of activity-based costing and even focuses on the way such a structure could be setup for Exxon Mobil.
  • Stages related to designing ABC systems The other section of typically the paper provides the portions involved in the create of an activity-based costing procedure.
  • Number of cost owners An important factor inside the set up of activity-based costing system is picking a the cost operators. The third component to the report discusses the following.
  • Calculations and Good examples The fourth sections presents a calculation in the activity-based priced at for Exxon Mobil.
  • Limitations of knowledge from ABC systems The very fifth section of the document presents the restrictions and problems in the using activity-based pricing.
  • Bottom line Finally, one more section summarises the disputes presented in the paper and also highlights the important thing points to determine the newspaper.


Activity-based costing is usually utilised to enhance business steps through behavioural, business plus accounting strategies, and ‘focuses on rates associated with actions, but also finds out whether those activities include value, so providing a technique of understanding how to many effectively cut down costs‘ (Maiga & Jacobs, 2003).

The paper talks over specific places that will help ExxonMobil in putting together an activity-based costing structure. It is possible to arranged this up for ExxonMobil to ride around in its capabilities but this tends to require couple of key key points in adhering to this approach:

  • Commitments from senior citizen management Setting the GRUNDELEMENTER system will stipulate strong motivation from older management since there may be problems and inquiries raised by simply different stakeholders as this procedure is followed.
  • Transparency in options In addition to motivation, setting up a good ABC method will also involve that the enterprise be pur in its budgetary and operating figures to have the most take advantage of implementing a really system.


There are several important stages in which organisations need to follow throughout designing ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems in organisations. The true secret stages with designing ABC systems are generally as follows (Allott, 2004):

  • Decide scope and key routines performed This specific stage will require the development of crucial objectives plus activities regarding departments plus the organisation. The process in this step is to be sure that there aren‘t too many things to do that next render the main analysis when inaccurate presented the depth required.
  • Apportion special staff time and assess the organisations‘ resources expected The supervision within the establishments then need to assess the assets required to improve the key exercises defined inside first cycle. This point requires the evaluation of exactly where employees expended their period, as this would be apportioned as a part of ABC structure.
  • Add other one on one costs Besides the costs linked to the staff and their time, various other direct fees will also needs to be included as part of the analysis and even measurement.
  • Allocate office and corporate runninhg costs and recognize the key results produced The particular outputs for any activities motivated in period one should come to be defined. These outputs needs to be largely measurable though instantly some pursuits that won‘t have instantly measurable signals. From this, departmental and corporate outgoings can then be assigned.
  • Put into value-adding and also non-value putting activities along with assess activity-level drivers together with cost-input motorists The fourth level is to evaluate the value-adding together with non-value-adding actions, and also the factors that lead to the activity that occurs which includes either activity-level owners and cost-input drivers. Often the activity-level drivers are linked to the number of the incident of the things to do while the cost-input drivers are usually related to the money necessary for performing exactly what for the enterprise. Cost driver operators are particularly vital in creating ABC methods and the after that section talks over this concept additional.
  • Determine unit fee Once all the measurements and factors are actually defined, it happens to be then achievable to evaluate the unit value for a number of output activities. This will after that drive another stage.
  • Use investigations to determine refurbishment opportunities In designing in addition to implementing a ABC technique, there should be properly define enhancement opportunities that the organisations will certainly target. This is based on the information that derive from the evaluation and are vital, as this may drive what of the employees and the company. Thus, all these improvement possibilities should be projects that are obtainable and, as well, could effects the capabilities of the enterprise significantly, in cases where achieved.

The periods defined preceding are the high-level key levels in planning and carrying out an B?RNEL?RDOM system regarding organisations.


As i have said in the previous section on the phases of designing an ELEMENTARBOG system, often the identification for cost-input car owners is important in the proper enactment of the ELEMENTARBOG system. This discusses the selection of cost individuals in greater detail on the context connected with an ABC method. Cost car owners play an important role because objective with identifying the price drivers is to be able to see how the establishments can manage and deal with the costs appropriately and make favorable changes to the way in which these prices drive often the organisation. The final goal then is to currently have lower costs for that firm and better functioning working and finance performance which might lead to strong competitive advantages of organisations compared to competitors inside of a sector.

There are many principles which are important inside identification belonging to the cost driver operators for an GRUNDELEMENTER system. Picking a cost motorists is important for any following reasons:

  • Drive efficiency of setup The BEGYNDERBOG system are available through the charge drivers drive an automobile the effectiveness of the business.
  • Develop internal comprehending Having the appropriate cost drivers selected in the ABC system will boost the understanding of the employees of the value-adding activities and be able to focus on those actions that caliber the most time.
  • Tackle external problems Finally, a number of external stakeholders will need to often be catered that will in the collection of cost motorists. The next few paragraphs demonstrate how this is important.

As well as an internal appraisal of the important cost drivers for an organization, there are also elements that could creep into play. Like one of the factors driving selecting cost driver operators is outer pressure regarding these fee drivers. Provided the rising focus on the community in recent years, the actual pressure to manipulate and endure the environmental prices especially in sectors such as the acrylic sector has grown with option traders concerned about probable liabilities that may impact typically the firm and also general public, for example the government, seeking to the health issues that may result from toxic emissions and supplies (Lee, 2005).

These geographical costs could be significant simply because seen within the following good examples (Lee, 2005):

  • N. R. Grace had cost totalling US$50 million over 10 years ago for enviromentally friendly remediation
  • Koch Petroleum Crew spent considerable amounts throughout a few years meant for environmental influence and refinery pollution: circa US$7 mil in 1998, circa US$$8 , 000, 000 in 99, and circa US$2 huge number of in 2150
  • NCH Organization charged funds in the sum of circa US$16 million for 2000 for environmental remediation
  • Unocal given provisions amounting to US$22 million throughout 2002 pertaining to environmental remediation and decreasing earnings
  • On the whole for industries such as attributes, steel in addition to metals, oil, paper, plus chemicals, which in turn deal with environmentally-sensitive areas, prices place ‘environmental expenditures being annual shelling out of more than 1% for revenues‘

Thus, considering the pressure externally to manage enviromentally friendly costs, it’s become a price tag driver in which firms just like Exxon Mobil need to use in an activity-based costing program. The key causes of including this cost drivers are the examples below (Lee, 2005):

  • Environment issues ripoffs increasingly centered on by the public and external groups around the globe
  • Environmental decision-making is as a result critical and also the precise product information to be able to handle and deal with this element needs to be collected by the suitable firms
  • Any proactive stance in running environmental fees can be very necessary for firms during these environmentally-sensitive locations particularly ‘in terms with risk decline, prevention about liabilities, and the preservation connected with firm reputation‘


For implementing a ABC program in ExxonMobil, it is important to have an initial report on what the price tag drivers to get Exxon Mobil could be the design of a great ABC method. Before carrying on with on this journey, a number of assumptions have to be expressed: (1) it is a high level example of a computation for ExxonMobil as an exhaustive review will not be conducted to properly carry out an ABC system with the organisation, (2) only speedy estimates are usually presented considering that these are according to an outside-in perspective by way of existing financial reports, (3) no special details are provided nonetheless by the organisation.

The above calculations are based on a variety of assumptions created for the purpose of explaining how utilizing an ABC product could modify the results of typically the performance in the regions and also the setup to then make better conclusions. The presumptions were made in this scenario and it also could be the different way around in that the more costs fall into the US and even Canada / South America parts. The objective throughout showing these kinds of calculations was to highlight the impact that activity-based costing may have in producing a much lower understanding of the cost that are designed in the financial records of companies.

The way the expenditures are and then broken up together with allocated to unique cost sections will have a direct impact on most of these divisions along with the decisions made. The important interest is that the GRUNDELEMENTER system really should identify the best allocation of your costs via a understanding of the moment spent from the staff which include other factors that the organisation could deem crucial in the B?RNEL?RDOM system.


The restrictions of information from ABC devices can be taken into consideration in couple of ways: (1) limitations on establishing together with implementing typically the ABC systems, and (2) limitations inside the use of the info resulting from the particular ABC techniques implemented in the organisation. This looks at which will limitations.

E. 1 . Disadvantages in setting up and employing the ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems

One of the many key issues in putting into action an activity-based costing method is the ability to accumulate the correct facts for the suitable use of the procedure. Throughout the numerous years of the use of the ELEMENT?RVIDEN system, several limitations have come to the connaissance. The key disadvantages most often quotation have been the below:

  • Subjectivity in distribution of time . A key concern involving users from the ABC system was the adequate distribution your own time among the critical activities of which employees handled, and the subjectivity in allotting the time exalted some things and troubles in the possible reliability of your system (Journal of Accountancy, 2008). These days, there have been superior processes that have been designed to reduce the subjectivity in the circulation of time simply by employees, mainly with the strategy used in time-driven activity-based that is with a key benefit within simplifying the procedure (Lambino, 2007). However , it’s not been recently well disclosed and there is nonetheless a general aspect about this situation for the B?RNEL?RDOM system.
  • Complexity about retrieving data for the ELEMENTARBOG system . Another consideration that received hampered the use of the ABC product has been the common feeling how the retrieval of knowledge was overly complex and the input needed in order to full the process in the ABC structure was way too demanding (Max, 2008). Within the car point above, there have been even further developments that create tended towards minimise the very complexity encircling the retrieval of the information needed for the very ABC process but they have not already been accepted frequently though the direction is shifting.

The 2 limitations highlighted above will be the key reasons that setup of the B?RNEL?RDOM system is limited. In organisations the location where the ABC program has been enforced, the two limits identified experience affected the effective use of information created by the ABC system. This really is discussed even more in the next component.

E. credit card Limitations in the use of tips resulting from BEGYNDERBOG systems

With the organisations which may have made the decision to help implement the ABC program, there are still disadvantages in the information that need to be considered as the information is normally utilised inside the organisations‘ decision-making. The key constraints are the following:

  • Costing and not an exact scientific disciplines . The outcome from the GRUNDELEMENTER system continue to be as quotations and are impacted by the subjectivity of a few of the inputs because described in the previous part of the it. The use of price tag averages plus estimates minimizes the openness of the expense and success information and for that reason results in a vital limitation in the use of the BEGYNDERBOG system (Max, 2007).
  • Potential overuse of information . This argument is not possibly be construed as to be done blatantly. But when the information is not really properly linked between activities and functions, the potential is actually to have imprecise results which in turn impact on that the information is definitely utilised (Crance, Castellano & Roehm, 2001).


That you can implement a strong ABC technique for ExxonMobil. A number of conclusions and subsequent steps is usually highlighted:

  1. High level produce of using was been shown to be possible. Next phase is to contain a proper analysis to follow the total stages in case the organisation had been keen to travel ahead.
  2. In-depth process is required to complete some sort of ABC method implementation ExxonMobil will need to spend on this along with assign options in order to generate the effort to own ABC system implemented.
  3. Devotion and transparency important for typically the implementation It is critical to get the buy-in and service of major management as well as key administrators of the enterprise.

Via these following steps, you are able to move into the next stage of obtaining the ELEMENTARBOG approach devised for ExxonMobil and even implemented while in the organisation.

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