Traditional and modern cost management systems: a scope and distinctive features

Strategic and Enterprise Planning

Nowadays, modern manufacturing companies aim to maintain a sustainable growth and gain leading market positions. For achieving this objective, an industrial enterprise needs to ensure the required quality and product competitiveness, for example by increasing the efficiency of the manufacturing process. Thus, it is essential to introduce a cost management activity into the general management system of the company. Main functions of cost management systems are the following: cost forecasting and planning, accounting, analysis, control and decision aid. The choice of the most appropriate and effective approach for the cost management is crucial in this prospective. The current study analyzes existing cost management models, their advantages and limitations. We argue that none of the existing cost management systems can provide managers with sufficient information and ensure all system functionalities. The drawback of traditional cost management systems is focusing mainly on accounting, operation management and internal organization environment. Modern cost management models focus generally on strategic management and thus can overcome certain limitations of traditional systems, but still they possess their own drawbacks. Consequently, when developing a cost management system, it is worth combining traditional and modern cost systems retaining their advantages and suppressing their individual drawbacks. In particular, we suggest to combine within a single cost management system a «standard-costing», «life-cycle-costing», «target-costing» and «kaizen-costing» concepts.