What Is A Flexible Budget?

The factory equipment operates on an average of 3,000 to 6000 hours per month. Let us consider firm M wants to determine the cost of electricity and supplies cost for its factory. The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Investopedia receives compensation. Investopedia does not include all offers available in the marketplace. Julia Kagan has written about personal finance for more than 25 years and for Investopedia since 2014.

flexible budget formula

Flexible budgeting takes into account each activity that makes performance measurement a better control. Flexible budgeting considers both fixed and variable costs with variance analysis. Management may set flexible targets to cover fixed costs and then gradually build on profits later. Variable costs assigned to sales activity or in percentage terms provide greater flexibility in profit analysis. The flexible budget uses the same selling price and cost assumptions as the original budget. The variable amounts are recalculated using the actual level of activity, which in the case of the income statement is sales units. For example, a flexible budget model is designed where the price per unit is expected to be $100.

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For instance, if your company produced 50,000 units in January, and you want to budget for 75,000 units in February, you have to look at your variable costs. As an example, take a company with a master budget that projects production of 10,000 units. It turns out that 2,000 more units were produced than expected, for an actual total of 12,000 units. That number can be plugged into a flexible budget formula to make adjustments to the forecasts for sales and revenue due to the change in volume. So, if the flexible budget predicts that the total cost to produce 10,000 units is $50,000, then the cost to produce 12,000 units should be $60,000. On the other hand, the last two costs, depreciation and supervision, are fixed costs and are assumed to be constant over the entire relevant range of activity meaning they do not change based on volume.

When preparing budget reports, it is important to include in the report the items the manager can control. If a manager is only responsible for a department’s costs, to include all the manufacturing costs or net income for the company would not result in a fair evaluation of the manager’s performance. If, however, the manager is the Chief Executive Officer, the entire income statement should be used in evaluating performance. New flexible budgeting provides greater advantages compared to static budgets, there are some limits involved as well. Both static and flexible budgets are designed to estimate future revenues and expenses.

flexible budget formula

A business normally produces 1,000 units over a three-month period, they would use 1,000 units as the basis for their static budget calculation. Budgets are a financial tool that forecasts business revenue and expenses over a specific period of time. You can use a budget to plan for various activities or departments within a business.

She most recently worked at Duke University and is the owner of Peggy James, CPA, PLLC, serving small businesses, nonprofits, solopreneurs, freelancers, and individuals. If the company performs below targets and produces only 75% of the units they will produce an adverse variance of -$181,250. Using a flexible budget will immediately alert you to any changes that are likely to impact your bottom line, allowing you to make changes proactively instead of reactively. Get clear, concise answers to common business and software questions.

Flexible Budget Performance Report

Total net income changes as the amount for each line on the income statement changes. The net variance in this example is mainly due to lower revenues.

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Prediction can be highly volatile as it depends upon factors of production which are beyond managerial controls. And their availability is a crucial factor in opting for a flexible budget.

In the most recent month, 800 units are sold and the actual price per unit sold is $102. This means there is a favorable flexible budget variance related to revenue of $1,600 (calculated as 800 units x $2 per unit).

Flexible Budget Variance Definition

From this understanding, formulas are created that capture cost and revenue behavior in the master budget. Before costs can be added in, they should be classified correctly as variable or fixed. These variances are used to assess whether the differences were favorable or unfavorable . If an organization’s actual costs were below the static budget and revenue exceeded expectations, the resulting lift in profit would be a favorable result. Conversely, if revenue didn’t at least meet the targets set in the static budget, or if actual costs exceeded the pre-established limits, the result would lead to lower profits. Within an organization, static budgets are often used by accountants and chief financial officers –providing them with financial control.

A static budget–which is a forecast ofrevenueandexpensesover a specific period–remains unchanged even with increases or decreases in sales and production volumes. However, when compared to the actual results that are received after the fact, the numbers from static budgets can be quite different from the actual results. Static budgets are used by accountants, finance professionals, and the management teams of companies looking to gauge the financial performance of a company over time. A flexible budget model, which is used to create a flexible budget, consists of formulas that generate expected costs based on assumptions used to create the master budget.

If a budget is prepared assuming 100 customers will be served, how will the managers be evaluated if 300 customers are served? Similar scenarios exist with merchandising and manufacturing companies. To effectively evaluate the restaurant’s performance in controlling costs, management must use a budget prepared for the actual level of activity.

  • In the case of revenues, a favorable variance occurs when the actual revenues are greater than the budgeted or standard revenues.
  • Flexible budgeting considers both fixed and variable costs with variance analysis.
  • The performance report spots the variances that can’t be explained by this formula.
  • Total net income changes as the amount for each line on the income statement changes.

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Flexible Budget

For example, under a static budget, a company would set an anticipated expense, say $30,000 for a marketing campaign, for the duration of the period. It is then up to managers to adhere to that budget regardless of how the cost of generating that campaign actually tracks during the period. If you own an ice cream shop, you know that the height of your business will be in the warm summer months. Using a flexible budget allows you to account for increased revenues, higher labor costs, and higher inventory costs during the busier months without having to adjust for months when business is slower.

While accounting software is an important part of tracking all of your financial transactions, many software applications simply don’t have the capability of preparing a flexible budget. Keep in mind that if you or your bookkeeper are unfamiliar with cost accounting, the process of creating a flexible budget is best left in the hands of an accounting professional or CPA. Variable overhead is the indirect cost of operating a business, which fluctuates with manufacturing activity. A static budget incorporates expected values about inputs and outputs that are conceived prior to the start of a period. If the company performs well and reaches an above-target performance, it will have a favorable variance of $90,625. And a flexible budget that accommodates the difference in the various components of the cost to accommodate changing trends is always preferable. Compute the overhead allocation rate by dividing total overhead by the number of direct labor hours.

Also, a vivid classification of the expenses to different categories of a fixed cost, semi-variable cost, and variable cost is necessary before preparing a budget. To compute the value of the flexible budget, multiply the variable cost per unit by the actual production volume. Here, the figure indicates that the variable costs of producing 125,000 should total $162,500 (125,000 units x $1.30). Let’s assume a company determines that its cost of electricity and supplies will vary by approximately $10 for each machine hour used. It also knows that other costs are fixed costs of approximately $40,000 per month.

Information On A Flexible Budget Report

A flexible budget is a budget that adjusts or flexes with changes in volume or activity. For costs that vary with volume or activity, the flexible budget will flex because the budget will include a variable rate per unit of activity instead of one fixed total amount. Overhead expenses are all costs on the income statement except for direct labor, direct materials, and direct expenses. Overhead expenses include accounting fees, advertising, insurance, interest, legal fees, labor burden, rent, repairs, supplies, taxes, telephone bills, travel expenditures, and utilities. Budget reports can be a useful tool for evaluating a manager’s effectiveness only if they contain the appropriate information.

The performance report spots the variances that can’t be explained by this formula. A flexible budget variance is a calculated difference between the planned budget and the actual results. In the example above, the company has set a target of 85% production capacity.

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