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Reference no. 9-104-073
Compact case
Published by:
Harvard Business Publishing (2004)
26 April 2005
4 pages
Data source:
Generalised experience


Presents an easy introduction to time-driven activity-based costing (ABC) that allows students to build a simple ABC model of order profitability. Midwest's time-driven ABC approach is based on two categories of parameter estimates. The first is the cost per hour of employees performing diverse tasks, such as order-entry operators and delivery personnel performing desktop deliveries. The second is the estimated time required for employees to perform each type of task (manual vs electronic orders, nearby vs distant deliveries). Students apply the time-driven ABC model to five representative orders to estimate order profitability based on a far more accurate portrayal of the cost of processing and delivering orders. Stimulates a discussion about the actions, such as pricing and process improvements, to enhance the profitability of orders and also how to report and manage the cost of unused capacity. A rewritten version of an earlier case.


Distribution; Management accounting; Activity-based costing; Cost accounting
USD40 million revenues
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