Activity Established Costing (ABC) Case Study: Exxonmobil


This kind of paper presents an diagnosis of the set up of an activity-based costing (ABC) for Exxon Mobil, a global oil business. The discussion inside paper is definitely structured the following:

  • Setting up a strong activity-based being for Exxon Mobil This kind of first portion presents the of activity-based costing as well as focuses on the best way such a technique could be create for Exxon Mobil.
  • Stages linked to designing ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems The second section of the very paper offers the development involved in the set up of an activity-based costing method.
  • Choice of cost owners An important factor from the set up of the activity-based losing system is picking a the cost driver operators. The third area of the cardstock discusses this.
  • Solution and Illustrations The fourth portion presents an example calculation with the activity-based charging for Exxon Mobil.
  • Limitations of knowledge from GRUNDELEMENTER systems The particular fifth part of the document presents the constraints and matters in the utilization of activity-based being.
  • Bottom line Finally, the very last section summarises the disputes presented in the paper plus highlights the crucial element points to get the pieces of paper.


Activity-based costing is normally utilised to further improve business procedures through behavioural, business and even accounting practices, and ‘focuses on prices associated with activities, but also assess whether those people activities insert value, consequently providing a ways of understanding how to a lot of effectively lessen costs‘ (Maiga & Jacobs, 2003).

This paper talks about specific regions that will help ExxonMobil in putting together an activity-based costing product. It is possible to fixed this up for ExxonMobil they are driving its efficiency but it will require a pair of key standards in going after this approach:

  • Commitments from senior citizen management Publishing the B?RNEL?RDOM system requires strong determination from senior citizen management because there may be problems and problems raised by way of different stakeholders as this process is went after.
  • Clear appearance in activities In addition to dedication, setting up a great ABC structure will also require that the enterprise be pur in its financial and working with figures to experience the most make use of implementing this kind of system.


There are several key element stages in which organisations must follow on designing ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems for organisations. One of the keys stages in designing ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems are as follows (Allott, 2004):

  • Decide scope together with key routines performed This kind of stage requires the development of crucial objectives along with activities with regard to departments and also organisation. The challenge in this stage is to make sure that there aren‘t too many activities that subsequently render the main analysis because inaccurate offered the fine detail required.
  • Apportion direct staff some assess the organisations‘ resources requested The operations within the organizations then have to assess the resources required to work on the key things to do defined on the first phase. This stage requires typically the evaluation of exactly where employees invested their period, as this will be apportioned as a part of ABC process.
  • Increase other strong costs In addition to the costs relevant to the staff and the time, different direct expenses will also really need to be included a product of analysis as well as measurement.
  • Allocate department and corporate expenses and recognize the key components produced Often the outputs for that activities determined in level one should come to be defined. Such outputs should be largely measurable though instantly some things to do that won‘t have specifically measurable results. From this, departmental and corporate runninhg costs can then be assigned.
  • Separated into value-adding along with non-value such as activities and even assess activity-level drivers as well as cost-input drivers The fourth time is to evaluate the value-adding as well as non-value-adding pursuits, and also the components that trigger the activity that occur which includes together activity-level drivers and cost-input drivers. The very activity-level people are relating to the frequency of the occurrence of the things to do while the cost-input drivers tend to be related to the cost of performing those activities for the setup. Cost people are particularly critical in developing ABC programs and the next section looks at this concept additional.
  • Analyze unit cost you Once all the measurements and also factors are defined, it is actually then doable to assess the unit price for diverse output actions. This will subsequently drive the other stage.
  • Use studies to determine development opportunities On designing as well as implementing the ABC procedure, there should be nicely define production opportunities how the organisations could target. This can be based on the conclusions that derive from the evaluation and are important, as this definitely will drive the actions of the staff members and the setup. Thus, these kinds of improvement options should be pursuits that are plausible and, also, could result the general performance of the company significantly, in case achieved.

The phases defined earlier mentioned are the high-level key phases in constructing and carrying out an BEGYNDERBOG system regarding organisations.


Many tools in the previous spot on the staging of making an ABC system, the main identification for cost-input car owners is important while in the proper enactment of the ELEMENTARBOG system. This section discusses the selection of cost drivers in greater detail while in the context of your ABC system. Cost motorists play a key role as the objective with identifying the fee drivers is usually to be able to determine how the enterprises can manage and management the costs appropriately and make advantageous changes to exactly how these will cost you drive the particular organisation. The tip goal then is to experience lower costs for any firm in addition to better operational and economic performance that could lead to strong competitive advantages for organisations compared to competitors in a very sector.

You can find principles which are important within the identification in the cost individuals for an B?RNEL?RDOM system. The selection of cost owners is important for the following arguments:

  • Drive general performance of organization The BEGYNDERBOG system can be utilised through the expense drivers of travel the operation of the organisation.
  • Strengthen internal comprehension Having the suitable cost motorists selected for any ABC product will improve the understanding of employees of the value-adding activities and also focus on these activities that deserve the most period.
  • Tackle external fears write my paper Finally, many external stakeholders will need to always be catered to help in the choice of cost motorists. The next few paragraphs exhibit how this is important.

In addition to an internal review of the important cost individuals for an company, there are also factors that could get play. Like one of the elements driving selecting cost people is external pressure upon these expense drivers. Assigned the raising focus on air in recent years, often the pressure to manage and deal with the environmental charges especially in sectors such as the essential oil sector has increased with shareholders concerned about prospective liabilities which could impact the firm and the general public, along with the government, thinking about the health effects that may derive from toxic emissions and resources (Lee, 2005).

These eco costs can be significant as seen in the following instances (Lee, 2005):

  • M. R. Grace had cost totalling US$50 million more than a decade ago for ecological remediation
  • Koch Petroleum Team spent considerable amounts during a few years pertaining to environmental impact and refinery pollution: circa US$7 trillion in 1998, circa US$$8 zillion in the 90s, and circa US$2 million dollars in 2050
  • NCH Organization charged income in the amount of circa US$16 million on 2000 just for environmental remediation
  • Unocal furnished provisions amounting to US$22 million in 2002 just for environmental remediation and bringing down earnings
  • Over-all for market sectors such as attributes, steel and also metals, oil based, paper, in addition to chemicals, which will deal with environmentally-sensitive areas, estimations place ‘environmental expenditures to always be annual paying of about 1% for revenues‘

Thus, along with the pressure outwardly to manage environmental costs, it’s become a value driver this firms like Exxon Mobil need to include in an activity-based costing system. The key reasons for including this specific cost club are as follows (Lee, 2005):

  • Ecological issues are increasingly thinking about by the common and external groups around the globe
  • Environmental decision-making is therefore critical and also the precise product information to be able to control and handle this element needs to be obtained by the specific firms
  • Some proactive posture in taking care of environmental expenses can be very very theraputic for firms during these environmentally-sensitive spots particularly ‘in terms of risk lowering, prevention associated with liabilities, and the preservation associated with firm reputation‘


For implementing an ABC program in ExxonMobil, it is important to come with an initial report on what the price tag drivers to get Exxon Mobil could be in terms of the design of a ABC program. Before continuing on this route, a number of assumptions have to be claimed: (1) that is the high level example of a computation for ExxonMobil as an thorough review is actually not conducted to properly undertake an ABC system for any organisation, (2) only swift estimates are presented considering that these are based on an outside-in perspective utilising existing finance reports, (3) no specified details have been provided nevertheless by the group.

The above car loans calculations are based on various assumptions suitable for the purpose of displaying how utilising an ABC method could modify the results of the main performance from the regions and invite the company to and then make better judgments. The presumptions were made up in this scenario plus it could be the various way around in that the greater costs fall into the US and also Canada / South America districts. The objective on showing these kinds of calculations was to highlight the effect that activity-based costing could have in setting up a deeper understanding of the expenses that are contained in the financials of establishments.

The way the prices are next broken up in addition to allocated to numerous cost partitions will have a positive change on these divisions and also the decisions created. The important consideration is that the ELEMENT?RVIDEN system need to identify the proper allocation within the costs with the understanding of some time spent through the staff like other factors the organisation may deem important in the GRUNDELEMENTER system.


The restrictions of information right from ABC devices can be looked over in a pair of ways: (1) limitations throughout establishing along with implementing often the ABC systems, and (2) limitations on the use of the material resulting from the ABC techniques implemented in a organisation. It looks at which will limitations.

Vitamin e. 1 . Disadvantages in planning and applying the ELEMENTARBOG systems

One of many key issues in utilizing an activity-based costing method is the ability to pick up the correct details for the appropriate use of the product. Throughout the a lot of the use of the BEGYNDERBOG system, quite a few limitations have come to the fore. The key restrictions most often reported by have been down the page:

  • Subjectivity around distribution of time . The concern connected with users belonging to the ABC process was the correct distribution your own time among the main activities that will employees labored on, and the subjectivity in allotting the time lifted some considerations and challenges in the future reliability of your system (Journal of Accountancy, 2008). These days, there have been enhanced processes that were designed to decrease the subjectivity in the supply of time by employees, in particular with the strategy used in time-driven activity-based costing with a main benefit around simplifying accomplishing this (Lambino, 2007). However , it’s not been recently well disseminated and there is still a general aspect about this issue for the ELEMENTARBOG system.
  • Complexity for retrieving facts for the B?RNEL?RDOM system . Another factor that acquired hampered their use of the ABC product has been the common feeling the retrieval details was very complex and that the input expected in order to total the process with the ABC product was also demanding (Max, 2008). Like the point earlier, there have been more developments who have tended that will minimise often the complexity adjacent the access of the material needed for typically the ABC process but they have not really been accepted commonly though the phenomena is adjusting.

Both the limitations underlined above include the key explanations that execution of the ELEMENTARBOG system have been limited. Within organisations the place that the ABC system has been executed, the two policies identified get affected the employment of information created by the ABC system. This really is discussed even more in the next piece.

E. 2 . Limitations inside use of information resulting from ELEMENT?RVIDEN systems

For the organisations which may have made the decision in order to implement the particular ABC procedure, there are still restrictions in the info that need to be understood as the information is utilised while in the organisations‘ decision-making. The key disadvantages are the adhering to:

  • Costing no exact knowledge . The outcome from the ELEMENT?RVIDEN system remain as quotes and are influenced by the subjectivity of most of the inputs when described in the earlier part of the this. The use of cost averages together with estimates lowers the transparency of the value and earnings information therefore results in an important limitation inside use of the ELEMENT?RVIDEN system (Max, 2007).
  • Potential incorrect use of information . This debate is not be construed on be done purposely. But the spot that the information just properly attached between things to do and procedures, the potential exist to have inaccurate results which then impact on how a information is usually utilised (Crance, Castellano & Roehm, 2001).


You are able to implement any ABC system for ExxonMobil. A number of results and follow-up steps is usually highlighted:

  1. High level version of employing was shown to be possible. Alternative is to contain a proper critique to follow the full stages when the organisation was keen to go ahead.
  2. Detailed process is complete a good ABC technique implementation ExxonMobil will need to commit to this along with assign means in order to power the effort to achieve ABC product implemented.
  3. Commitments and transparency important for the very implementation It is critical to get the buy-in and assist of major management plus the key administrators of the setup.

With these upcoming steps, you can move into the subsequent stage having the ABC approach intended for ExxonMobil plus implemented while in the organisation.