ACC202 Management Accounting T3-13 Assignment Task 1. Group Report 2. Student learning outcome By successfully completing this assessment task students should be able to demonstrate: (a) Use management accounting approaches to describe and explain cost management and the effect of costs on product profitability (b) Understand financial performance measures, pricing and product mix decisions and how we as Management Accountants can add value to Customers and Shareholders. (c) Understand contemporary approaches to measuring and rewarding performance (If appropriate to selected case.) 3. Student assessment: You are to find two companies which MUST be in the same industry (e.g. Two grocery retailers, or two Transport Companies) to study. This will require you to investigate these businesses and (to a lesser extent) the industry in which they operate. The focus is NOT on purely financial performance but rather on HOW these companies have been overhauling its management practices and processes to add both Customer and Shareholder Value. Note that you should FOCUS on ONE MAIN company and use the additional companies for comparison purposes. You can research the examples given in Chapter 15 of the Text (6e p.685 Regarding Roberts Wool Link and The Merino Company. or 6e pp.686-687 Sigma and Blue Circle: A Supply Chain Partnership as examples of how you could START your report and the type of company activities you could examine.) Students are to work in a GROUP and produce a report (minimum 2500 words if three members, 3000 if four members in the Group) on how the companies you have chosen has worked on improving its performance and their cost management to add value to the firm. Focus of report: Ensure your report addresses the following issues: 1. What is it that makes the one subject company more successful than the other company? 2. Define clearly what you define as success. 3. Review each of the selected firms SUPPLY CHAIN and how this has contributed to their results including identifying how this may have given this entity a competitive advantage. 4. Address and comment on how each firm differs from each other and how Management Accountants would be necessary in assisting each entity to achieve their management goals. (Note for this part of the report, you should refer to the Text and other academic sources to support your conclusions and be specific!) 5. Where possible, research the remuneration package of the senior management (The Annual Report will give Salaries of the most highly paid individuals in all public companies.) Comment on how the senior management are rewarded (again, refer to the Remuneration Report in the Annual Report for disclosures on this aspect). Where there are a combination of Financial AND NON-Financial measures used, outline what factors are considered when calculating remuneration. The Report will require that you use Microsoft Word to format and complete the task. ACC202 ACC202 Management Accounting Written Assignment Tasks Page 2 There are TWO steps to submitting your assignment: a) The Group Report is to be submitted using Turnitin EARLY to obtain a Turnitin Score. Once you have your score. The Turnitin Score MUST be less than 25% unless agreed in writing from the Lecturer. Please note that a second submission to Turnitin can take up to 24 hours to return so allow PLENTY of time if you think you may get close to or greater than a 25% Turnitin Score. b) Once your Report is at LESS THAN 25% Turnitin Score, you are then to make that final submission to Turnitin. NOTE: If you wish to submit additional supporting information (such as extracts from the Annual Report which may add to your groups Turnitin score, you may submit these files in Moodle Assignment submission. Note this material will NOT BE MARKED however you may believe that such additional explanatory material helps explain your conclusion. The Moodle Assignment will allow up the three (3) separate files to be submitted. This will allow students to submit additional material such as Company Report Extracts or other Excel Files that may support the findings of your Group. Please make a note of this in your assignment if you wish the marker to refer to these additional materials. It is NOT the intention to have students submit three versions of their reports! You may find, by including additional (fully referenced) materials that you can lower your Turnitin Score as you will not have to include referenced material within the Report which would otherwise appear to be plagiarised. Final due time and date is before 8 PM Tuesday 28 January 2014. This date is in Week 10. (Please consult the Library for instructions if necessary WELL BEFORE the due date and time.) A printed copy of the assignment should be submitted to the library at the same time however the time of electronic submission to Turnitin will be the time officially recorded as your lodgement time. Naturally you may lodge it earlier if desired. The Turnitin link will be open 2 weeks prior to final due date. Students MUST accompany their printed copy of the assignment submission with a completed and signed KOI Group Assignment Coversheet. Please note that marks will be awarded to all members of the group based on their input. The lecturer should be consulted if a group member is not contributing to the task WELL IN ADVANCE of the due date so action may be taken. Only ONE person in EACH GROUP (someone very reliable) should be nominated to make the GROUP lodgement to Turnitin. Do NOT lodge multiple copies of the GROUP assignment from each group member. The Total Assignment will be marked out of 20 Marks and this Group Assignment carries a course weighting of 20 COURSE MARKS. 4. Assignment and Research hints: How do you measure Customer and Shareholder value? Review more than just profitability as an absolute measure of success (e.g. Telstra is by far the biggest telephony company but it does not automatically mean the best.). Other non-financial indicators may include such things as growth in market share (e.g. Growth of Market Share of the Grocery Market for Coles over the past 5 years), market leadership, growth of a particular business segment (e.g. share of business class passengers for an airline.). Reading Financial Press articles (rather than simply consulting the Companys own website) will often give you a very good indication of how well the business is being managed. Other key features of a well-run company is often such things as stability of senior management, the accolades (awards and acknowledgements) that the CEO and other senior managers may be given in the press for their leadership skills and innovative thinking. (Note you definitely SHOULD know the CEOs name and how long they have been at the Company.) ACC202 ACC202 Management Accounting Written Assignment Tasks Page 3 Where to find information: Remember, you are looking for additional academic articles and information to support your Report relating to Supply Chain Reform in an AUSTRALIAN Company or Industry. Also you should try to get current articles, so you should try to find articles written between 2005 and 2013. Earlier articles may be OK but you need to think as to whether they are still relevant given todays circumstances. Finding articles: a) Type the term into the Library database b) Add a second search term such as management of supply chain or market share if you dont get any results first c) Still no results that you can use? Try to use a different term that means the same thing. Reading/reviewing/analysing articles Many articles you will find will be several pages long this is quite normal for academic research papers as they are required to explain in detail the research methodology and results. These details are necessary to support and validate the findings. Do not let this concern you, as, for the purposes of your research for this, and most other assessment tasks, you do not need to read the detail about the research methodology and results. What you need to find out is the purpose of the research: what question they are trying to answer; any context considerations; the findings i.e. the answer to the question; and any comments about future directions or the application of the findings To gain this information, points 1 and 2 will be found in the abstract and the introductory section(s) usually within the first 2 pages. Points 3 and 4 will be found at the end of the paper under the headings Findings and/or Conclusions and/or Recommendations or similar. These are usually the last page or two pages. A FULL copy of your reference article can be found on the subject website along with all other information under the heading Assignment however there is also an abbreviated version which omits the research methodology and statistical data. Although the article is quite long, only the first two pages (336 & 337) and page 350 have been needed for the review i.e. students usually only need to read the introduction and conclusion sections of the articles. 5. Late submission: Please note that late submission (any time after the due date and time) will incur a 20% penalty and then an additional 5% per day each day or part thereof that the Assignment is late. No Assignment will be collected or accepted after one week past the due date. As this is a Group Assignment, please note that Doctors Certificates for individual group members will NOT exempt a Group from lodging on time. Please lodge the Assignment showing your efforts to the due date and consideration may be given based upon the level of Assignment completion to the date of your illness or other misfortune. 6. Penalties will also be applied if all or part of this assessed work is plagiarised. 7. Any similarities or collaboration noted between group assignments will result in a fail grade. 8. Before handing in your assignment: Ensure you have referenced and cited all ideas, words or other intellectual property from other sources used in the completion of your assignment. ACC202 ACC202 Management Accounting Written Assignment Tasks Page 4 Develop a proper reference list, which includes acknowledgement of all sources used to complete your assignment. References must use the Harvard Style. 9. Referencing: Referencing IS Required. Ensure that you fully reference ALL material that is directly copied and enclose direct quotations appropriately with full references. Also ensure you have referenced and cited all ideas, words or other intellectual property from other sources used in the completion of your assignment. Please see the Library for assistance if you are unfamiliar with the correct procedure for Academic Referencing. Please note that WIKIPEDIA is NOT an acceptable reference source other than for very superficial checking and should NOT be used as a primary resource as there are no controlled peer review of the content on this or similar Wiki sites. 10. Working as a group: Group size: Minimum of three (3) and a maximum four (4) students to a group. Groups found to have less than three members may have additional students randomly assigned to that group to make up the minimum allowed. After forming your group and submitting the Group Membership details to me (on or before the fifth lecture), you should commence work immediately. Project Group Conflict For a project like this, success means being organised. The group will have to establish a division of labour and divide the work that needs to be done in a fair manner. Contributions to the project MUST be equitable. All group members will need to meet for a number of hours each week. Agree on a regular time and place and set an agenda. Group conflict is inevitable and should be resolved early in the semester. Group breakdowns are amongst the most common reasons why students fail. Make records (e.g. keeping emails sent and received) of all agreed meetings, who did and did not attend, agreed actions coming from the meeting and who is responsible for each of these. When group conflict becomes destructive, group members should first consider using mediation to resolve any dispute, disagreement, grievance or complaint. If the conflict still cannot be resolved, then group members can fire a member from the group by openly voting a person out BUT only after consulting the module lecturer. Upon the approval by the lecturer, the group leader/representative must inform the ousted person the outcome agreed via email and copy the message to all other group members including the lecturer. The ousted person has the right to present a defence within five calendar days if he or she wishes to remain in the group. In this situation, every group member must complete a Peer Group Evaluation to evaluate the contribution of every group member to the group project during the semester. All evaluations must be submitted in a sealed envelope directly to the Lecturer on the project due date. The results of the Peer Group Evaluation to assess group members relative contribution to the project task will affect the ACC202 ACC202 Management Accounting Written Assignment Tasks Page 5 individual mark for the group project. A mark of zero will be awarded to any student who does not participate. When a group member has been fired and decides not to challenge the decision, he/she will have to complete the whole project on his/her own (and not just merely submit the part that he/she was previously assigned to contribute). Likewise, the remaining group members will have to take over the work originally assigned to the ousted person and complete it. Please note that in the event a project group breaks up and that the disintegrated groups do not finish the whole project on their own, the submission will be treated as partially done. The lecturer will not grade the project work on a partial basis (to compensate as a whole due to the breakup). Alternatively, the ousted group member is free to join any other project group provided there is still room for an additional group member (maximum four to a group) and a unanimous decision is made by all project members to accept him or her. Group members need to be familiar with all aspects of the project requirements. While the group may divide the project tasks up among members, the final document will need to flow smoothly.
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