Student Preface

Where will your career lead you in 5, 10 or 15 years? Chances are you will have progressed to a level that requires you to manage. Maybe you are managing people. Maybe you are managing inventories. Maybe you are managing a department, store, branch or division. Maybe you are managing the entire organization! But regardless of what you are managing, you will be making decisions, and these decisions are often made using managerial accounting information as an input to the decision process.

Today's business environment is a complex assortment of relationships, all of which are necessary for an organization's success in the marketplace. These relationships can involve external parties such as suppliers and customers or internal parties such as employees. And all of these relationships rely on some form of managerial accounting information to support decision-making activities.

Non-accounting business majors frequently ask, “Why do I need to take accounting? I'm not going to do accounting; I'll hire an accountant to do that for me.” True, you may have an accounting staff preparing the information you need to make decisions. But a working knowledge of accounting is essential to success in business, even when the accounting “work” is left to the trained accountants. Decision makers at all levels in the organization must know what accounting information to ask for and must know how to interpret that information before reaching a conclusion about a course of action. For ...

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