Cost Accounting in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations

Cost Accounting in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations

Long live Cost Accounting in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations: this could reduce the number of daily used financial dimensions.

Cost Accounting gives managerial insights less pain

As a consultant and trainer with the AX-family for the last 20 years, I often challenge the use of financial dimensions. Does it really make sense to have 8-12-20 financial dimensions for up-front daily accounting?

“Depends” is my favourite term, and quite often precisely that answer drives customers, students and everybody else up the wall. But it really does – depend!

With the upcoming Spring release of Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations, perhaps we should think twice before adding extra financial dimensions to an account structure and thus to the burden of the daily financial workers, as well as the performance of D365O itself.

If the primary purpose of a financial dimension is to drive cost and profitability analysis, the new tools in Cost Accounting would get the job done – and probably be much better at it. It has such a rich toolset, not available anywhere else in D365O.

As a result of using Cost Accounting functionality, the daily accounting and reporting chores could be greatly simplified, statutory reporting easier. Controllers, auditors and indeed D365O performance would not struggle with quite the same challenges from dimension validation set-up and daily check during posting, or the millions of extra transactions resulting from allocation terms and rules.

For some companies, the allocation for costing purposes would better be done in Cost Accounting, the perhaps fast growing module/functionality in D365O. It has a much richer set of tools than the fairly basic allocation terms and rules in General Ledger; including statistical information, advanced fixed and variable allocation mix

Cost accounting lets you collect data from various sources, such as the general ledger, sub-ledgers, budgets, and statistical information. You can then analyze, summarize, and evaluate cost data, so that management can make the best possible decisions for price updates, budgets, cost control, and so on.

Note the “statistical information” – allows for some nice tricks when analyzing cost!

Even the German-speaking markets – very often requiring cost accounting functionality – can reap the benefits of a totally integrated solution, including fully traceable transactions and analysis flow. This is so much better than handling Cost Accounting in Excel spreadsheets. True, Excel gets the job done; but how about audit trails back to the ERP transactions, real-time updates, security, and multi-user insights?

Perhaps best of all, the Cost Accounting functionality in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations does not post any new transactions back to GL (or any other module for that sake). Of course, it sources data from across the board: But it has its’ own data-mart! No matter how hard you play your Cost Accounting, no harm is ever done to your financial transactions. No new transactions are written back – it stays in the Cost Accounting data mart.

The wait for spring will be even harder this year – with the now much anticipated Spring release update for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations. And thinking of it, when is the release season on the Southern hemisphere anyway – their Spring?

Learn how to use Cost Accounting in D365O

Watch out for our upcoming class on Cost Accounting in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations. It uses our own developed training materials, hands-on labs and is based on and includes the latest additions in the “Spring release” of D365O.