Cost rollup policy and overhead calculation

Cost accounting lets you gain insight into how the cost flow relates to the products and services that are delivered within an organization. To see the cost transparency, it's crucial to achieve cost allocation between cost objects based on an appropriate allocation basis. By default, the cost allocation is achieved for the primary cost element, which is desired in some situations, but it has a few implications that should be considered.

  • Auxiliary cost objects will end with a zero balance for the primary cost element after overhead calculation.

  • The volume of cost entries generated by overhead calculation can be very high.

  • It is not possible to track the cost flow between cost objects.

To avoid these implications, Cost accounting lets you configure cost allocation to fit into your organization managerial reporting requirements. This topic discusses how you can determine the correct level of secondary cost elements and create cost rollup rules that fit into organization reporting and cost traceability.

Note

You can change configurations if reporting requirements change.

Example of cost rollup policy setup

Imagine that an organization has the following structure with 4 cost centers.

Example of an organization structure

Cost object dimension

Cost centers Description
CC001 HR
CC002 Finance
CC003 Assembly
CC004 Packaging

Cost element dimension

Cost elements Description Type
1001 Electricity Primary
1002 Salaries Primary
1003 Advertising Primary

A dimension hierarchy that fulfills the organizational reporting requirements can be set up as follows.

Dimension hierarchy details

Dimension hierarchy name Dimension Dimension hierarchy type name Access list hierarchy
Organization Cost centers Dimension classification hierarchy No

Dimension hierarchy

Dimension member ranges
Nodes From dimension member To dimension member
Organization
  Admin
    Finance CC001 CC001
    HR CC002 CC002
  Production
    Packaging CC003 CC003
    Assembly CC004 CC004

A dimension hierarchy that fulfills the policy requirement can be set up as follows.

Dimension hierarchy details

Dimension hierarchy name Dimension Dimension hierarchy type name
Profit & Loss statement Cost elements Dimension classification hierarchy

Dimension hierarchy

Dimension member ranges
Nodes From dimension member To dimension member
Profit & Loss statement
    Primary cost 10001 10003

After the general ledger entries are processed, the cost entry balance by cost object looks like this.

Cost object Total
Cost element CC001 CC002 CC003 CC004
1001 Electricity 100,00 200,00 6.000,00 2.000,00 8.300,00
1002 Salaries 10.000,00 10.000,00 8.000,00 6.500,00 34.500,00
1003 Advertising 0,00 4.000,00 0,00 0,00 4.000,00
10.100,00 14.200,00 14.000,00 8.500,00 46.800,00

Statistical dimension

Statistical elements Description
SE-1 HR services
SE-2 Finance services

Cost object CC001 HR is contributing HR services to several cost objects.

HR services are consumed by the following distribution of magnitude.

Cost object Description HR services
CC002 Finance 35
CC003 Assembly 55
CC004 Packaging 10

Cost object CC002 Finance is contributing to several cost objects.

Finance services are consumed by the following distribution of magnitude.

Cost object Description Finance services
CC003 Assembly 65
CC004 Packaging 35

Cost allocation polices can be set up as follows.

Policy name Description Cost object dimension hierarchy Statistical dimension Cost element dimension
2017 Cost allocation Organization Statistical elements Cost elements

Cost allocation rules can be set up as follows.

Cost object dimension hierarchy node Cost behavior Allocation base
CC001 Total HR services
CC002 Total Financial services


How cost flows between cost centers

If you want to learn how cost flows between the cost centers in the organization, you can create cost elements of the type Secondary for each cost center. These cost elements will then be used to transfer balances between the cost centers during the overhead calculation.

Cost element dimension members can be set up as follows.

Cost elements Type
1001 Electricity Primary
1002 Salaries Primary
1003 Advertising Primary
SC-CC001 HR Secondary
SC-CC002 Finance Secondary
SC-CC003 Assembly Secondary
SC-CC004 Packaging Secondary

The dimension hierarchy Profit & Loss statement needs to be updated with the new dimension members so that the dimension hierarchy contains the correct data that can be used for defining reporting and policies.

Dimension hierarchy details

Dimension hierarchy name Dimension Dimension hierarchy type name
Profit & Loss statement Cost elements Dimension classification hierarchy

Dimension hierarchy

Dimension member ranges
Nodes From dimension member To dimension member
Profit & Loss statement
    Primary cost 10001 10003
    Secondary cost SC-CC001 SC-CC004

Create a Cost rollup policy where each cost center is mapped to a corresponding cost element of the type Secondary.

Cost rollup polices

Policy name Description Cost object dimension hierarchy Cost element dimension hierarchy
2017 Cost flow Organization Profit & Loss statement

Cost rollup rules

Cost object dimension hierarchy node Cost element dimension hierarchy node Secondary cost element
CC001 Profit & Loss statement SC-CC001
CC002 Profit & Loss statement SC-CC002
CC003 Profit & Loss statement SC-CC003
CC004 Profit & Loss statement SC-CC004

Perform overhead calculation

Journal

Journal Journal type Fiscal calendar period Year Period Version
00002 Cost allocation journal Fiscal 2017 Period 1 Overhead calculation / 01-02-2017 11:51:00 PM / Ledger /2017 / Period 1

The system will now apply the Cost rollup policy when it creates the Cost object balance journal entries.

Cost object balance journal entries

Accounting date Cost object Description Cost element Description Amount
31-01-2017 CC001 HR SC-CC001 HR 10.100,00
31-01-2017 CC002 Finance SC-CC002 Finance 17.735,00
31-01-2017 CC003 Assembly SC-CC003 Assembly 31.082,75
31-01-2017 CC004 Packaging SC-CC004 Packaging 15.717,25

Note

The journal entries are created based on the rules in the Cost rollup policy if a policy exists. The balance displayed is the balance of the overhead calculation.

The Cost object cost balance journal entry details page that is accessed from the journal entries displays how the balance is obtained.

Example: The journal entry for Cost object CC002 Finance

Cost object cost balance journal entry details

Cost element dimension member Description Amount
1001 Electricity 200,00
1002 Salaries 10.000,00
1003 Advertising 4.000,00
SC-CC001 HR 3.535,00

Cost entries generated by the Overhead calculation

Cost object Description Cost element Description Amount Accounting date
CC001 HR SC-CC001 HR -10.100,00 31-01-2017
CC002 Finance SC-CC001 HR 3.535,00 31-01-2017
CC003 Assembly SC-CC001 HR 5.555,00 31-01-2017
CC004 Packaging SC-CC001 HR 1.010,00 31-01-2017
CC002 Finance SC-CC002 Finance -17.735,00 31-01-2017
CC003 Assembly SC-CC002 Finance 11.527,75 31-01-2017
CC004 Packaging SC-CC002 Finance 6.207,25 31-01-2017

After the Overhead calculation is completed, you can report the results using tools such as Microsoft SharePoint Workspace, Excel, or Power BI.

View reporting in Excel

The dimension hierarchies allow you to view data at different aggregation levels.

Here is an example of a Power Pivot reporting in Excel.

Profit & Loss statement Cost object Total
CC001 CC002 CC003 CC004
Primary cost 10.100,00 14.200,00 14.000,00 8.500,00 46.800,00
    1001 100,00 200,00 6.000,00 2.000,00 8.300,00
    1002 10.000,00 10.000,00 8.000,00 6.500,00 34.500,00
    1003 0,00 4.000,00 0,00 0,00 4.000,00
Secondary cost -10.100,00 -14.200,00 17.082.75 7.217,25 0,00
    SC-CC001 -10.100,00 3.535,00 5.555,00 1.010,00 0,00
    SC-CC002 0,00 -17.735,00 11.527,75 6.207,25 0,00
    SC-CC003 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
    SC-CC004 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
Total 0,00 0,00 31.082,75 15.717,25 46.800,00

Using Cost rollup policy and Cost elements of the type secondary allows you to leave the primary cost per cost object for internal reporting as the primary cost that remains after Overhead calculation.

If the same example had been performed without creating the Cost rollup policy, the reporting result would be as shown below. The cost flows correctly but the traceability and insight into how cost flows between the cost centers are lost.

Profit & Loss statement Cost object Total
CC001 CC002 CC003 CC004
Primary cost 0,00 0,00 31.082,75 15.717,25 46.800,00
    1001 0,00 0,00 6.207,75 2.092,25 8.300,00
    1002 0,00 0,00 22.275,00 12.225,00 34.500,00
    1003 0,00 0,00 2600,00 1.400,00 4.000,00
Secondary cost 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
     SC-CC001 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
     SC-CC002 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
     SC-CC003 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
     SC-CC004 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00 0,00
Total 0,00 0,00 31.082,75 15.717,25 46.800,00

Depending on the reporting and traceability requirements in your organization, you can determine the correct level of secondary cost elements and create cost rollup rules that fit your needs.

The clear separation between Cost allocation and Cost rollup policies provides the flexibility to make continuous updates without affecting each other.

See also