Define Material Cost, Material Costing & Control Assignment Help, Cost Accounting Help

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Material costing and control

Cutting costs is essential for improving the bottom line. By cost and material control you can increase your competiveness in long term and also do immediate savings. You should have a systematic approach towards cost cutting, a process requiring careful management. The elimination of wasteful activities proves very beneficial but any kind of indiscriminate cost cutting can cause fall in morale along with fall in quality levels. The cost cutting management should cover all the approached like:

1. Identifying the key areas for focusing efforts.

2. Management of cost control in both short and long term projects and processes.

3. Identifying the specific cost control activities along with the pitfalls involved.

The procedure involves identifying of the cost centers. These included purchasing, sales and marketing, production, administration, financing research and development and facilities management. Then the justification of costs is necessary in the spheres of raw materials and supplies, staff costs, capital expenditure and utility bills, travel, transport, communication and other financing costs.

Systematic cost control

The process of business objectives starts with setting of business objectives. What amount of manufacturing you aim to undertake or what mount of new customers you want to achieve are some examples. Improve your quality standards for establishing the standard costs you need to consider aspects like which resources are required and in what quantity. The cost of resources should also be considered upon. Establish the realistic budgeted costs based on your past experiences. Then you should record your actual costs and compare them with the budgeted and standard cots. Periodic reviewing and bench marking of the whole process is also very necessary.

Easy savings

Reduction of some costs can be done with little risks of having adverse impacts on performance and quality:

1. Checking of the in-voices of various suppliers reveals overcharging like double billing, missing discounts and incorrect charges.

2. Elimination of unnecessary costs can be done by getting rid of the obvious over capacities (for example unused telephone lines), cutting down of the evident and blatant wastes (for example hating of premises at night) and scrapping of useless processes (for example paperwork which is uncompleted, filed and forgotten).

3. Cracking down on the excessive costs involved is also very important. Try using second class postage, fax or email (incase the first class can be avoided), finding of alternatives to high prices supplier is also helpful in reducing costs while negotiating the discounts. Always avoid over specifying and ban all forms of wasteful luxuries (for example full fared business class flights).

4. Root out all the inefficiencies in various process by undertaking processes like avoiding of frequently placed small orders, identifying manual and power based systems that might be computerized, an also consider switching to single monthly invoicing measures for cutting the costs and processing.


The systematic approach of use effectively helps in highlighting opportunities for controlling costs and reduction in the risks involved. You have to thoroughly review all your operational processes and you will also have to change the way you do things. Some common opportunities are:

1. Reduction of payroll costs by out sourcing non-core activities, using consultants, redesigning of processes, for reducing time and eliminating duplication of efforts and activities, making more use of automation and technology, not overpaying when recruiting new employees etc.

2. Improvement in purchasing can be done by switching to cheaper supplies, negotiation of price reductions, consolidating the purchasing with fewer suppliers for attainment of a maximum discounts, agreeing more to long term discounts and involving in strategic partnerships with suppliers,, building of personal relationship with suppliers for getting preferential treatment, simplifying the purchasing procedures for reducing your as well as your suppliers cost, providing individual employees with purchasing limits for reduction in administration burdens, asking the banks for purchasing cards etc.

5. Production can be made more efficient by trimming back the product ranges and increasing of production runs, using standard components for lowering of designs, manufacturing and the purchasing costs, altering processes for minimizing wastages of energy and the raw materials, improving quality controls for cutting the rejection rates and reworking the costs.

Finances are to be reviewed and improved by financing fixed requirements by loans (avoid overdrafts), reduction of loan facilities and overdrafts, cutting back on working capital by doing just-in-time purchases , applying more for subsidized loans and grants.

6. The premises of the resource can be exploited fully by introducing home works or hot desking for cutting down the space requirements, sub-letting the spare spaces, reconfiguring the existing premises and the work flows for minimizing the wastage of time and space.

7. Cut down the cost of communications by using email whenever there is a possibility, using the corporate intranet by reduction in duplication of unnecessary meetings and information, using of cheaper telecom facilities, not attempting to control unalterable costs, which is in itself a useful process.