Planned costs

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Plan costs are in the business administration by budgeting determined in advance future consumption of factors of production , which in business during normal operation is to be achieved in the future.


Planned costs have therefore not yet arisen, but corporate planning is expecting them to arise in the future. Therefore, planned costs are not a type of cost (such as material costs ) that has already been incurred. Rather, planned costs have a standard and default character, because they can either be specified on the basis of reference values (e.g. machine hours , operating time ) or specified as budgets (e.g. office supplies , personnel costs ) . To do this, a company uses plan cost accounting . It first determines the planned costs for the entire company and breaks them down to the individual cost centers . In order to distinguish the planned costs from the costs actually incurred, the latter are also referred to as "actual costs". Budget costs, standard costs , target costs , target costs or standard costs are synonyms or partial invoices for planned costs .

The concept of planned costs can be traced back to Max Rudolf Lehmann , who in 1925 first spoke of “planned costs” and then of planned costs. At that time cost accounting was already well advanced and business economists began to develop models for cost planning.


The planned costs result from multiplying the planned employment by the planned cost rate :


Under plan employment is defined as the expected costs during the planning period of employment , so the scope of future capacity utilization . After adding up the planned costs, the total planned costs are related to the planned employment and the planned cost rate is calculated. The plan cost rate is determined as follows:


The planned cost rate is the quotient of the planned costs and the planned employment, which results from the comparison of two planned figures.

Planned cost accounting

The planned cost accounting (PKR) is not a cost accounting in the narrower sense, because the PKR does not deal with costs incurred, but with expected future costs. The PKR is therefore a computing system in which the expected costs of the (coming) planning period are determined and charged ex ante to the cost units. The accounting objectives of PKR are to provide cost and performance information for planning , controlling and controlling costs. The plan costs are your central planning object.

The PKR is a future-oriented method of cost and performance accounting and particularly suitable for solving planning and control tasks (target / actual comparison). The relevant planning data are determined using estimates or calculations. Classic cost accounting is a full cost accounting method . A further development of costing on part cost basis is the marginal costing .

Graphical representation of the rigid plan cost calculation


The PKR can be subdivided into cost type , cost center and cost unit accounting , whereby pure plan costs are used. The specialist literature differentiates between rigid and flexible PKR.

Rigid cost accounting

Rigid budgeting is a simple and quick method of cost control. The main goals of rigid cost accounting are to ensure that cost accounting is integrated into corporate planning and to create a basis for cost control. The rigid plan cost calculation is a pure full cost calculation that determines the planned employment and does not differentiate between fixed costs and variable costs .

Flexible budgeting

Graphical representation of the flexible plan cost calculation

Since the PKR processes plan values, it also takes the planned employment into account, which may differ from the actual employment that occurs later - i.e. the actual employment. The flexible PKR distinguishes between fixed costs and variable costs, which are split into utility costs and idle costs .

When determining the target costs , one starts from the variable planned costs , which are multiplied by the actual employment and supplemented by the fixed planned costs :


The difference between the calculated planned costs and the target costs is known as the employment variance and is determined by the flexible PKR:


With increasing employment, the employment variance decreases and is zero if the target costs and the calculated planned costs match. The employment variance corresponds to the existing idle costs .

A consumption discrepancy is due to the - more or less existing - efficiency of the use of production factors during production:


whereby the actual total costs are to be compared with the target costs . Inefficiency is when the actual costs exceed the target costs.

A price discrepancy can occur e.g. B. result from short-term increased purchase prices for the production material . Price deviations can usually only be influenced to a small extent by the cost center manager. It is the difference between actual cost prices and planned cost prices determined on the basis of expected average inflation or rising raw material prices. The price variance is determined first in the variance calculation of the full cost calculation. It has little or no effect on cost accounting, because in cost accounting accounts are used to iterate the price differences.

The total deviation can be determined from the employment and consumption deviation :


The flexible PKR does not allow effective cost control, only cost control can be carried out in the cost centers. If actual employment and planned employment do not match, the plan cost allocation rate is too high or too low if fixed costs exist.


Plan costs and plan cost accounting are essential prerequisites for effective cost management and cost control. They also influence budgeting , because planned costs can serve as a target . They are also used in the preliminary costing . The planned costs can thus contribute to reducing costs and ultimately to maximizing profits .


Konrad Mellerowicz sees planned and standard costs as synonyms; however, he conceded that there is a formal distinction between the two in the specialist literature. According to this, planned costs are center costs (in cost centers ), whereas standard costs are the planned unit costs of the products (for cost units ).


  • Adolf G. Coenenberg ( inter alia): Cost accounting and cost analysis , 8th edition, Stuttgart 2012
  • Wolfgang Kilger (inter alia): Flexible plan cost accounting and contribution margin accounting , 13th edition, Wiesbaden 2012

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Rainer Bramsemann, systems of cost and performance accounting , 2005, p. 99
  2. ^ Günter Ebert, Cost and Performance Accounting , 1997, p. 144
  3. ^ Max Rudolf Lehmann, Die industrial calculation , 1925, p. 86 ff.
  4. Hartmund Barth, cost and performance accounting in trade , 1987, p. 52
  5. ^ Günter Wöhe / Ulrich Döring , Introduction to General Business Administration , 25th edition, 2013, p. 938
  6. Hans-Ulrich Küpper, Plankostenrechnung , in: Wolfgang Lück (Ed.), Lexikon der Betriebswirtschaft, 1983, p. 885 ff.
  7. Thomas Joos, Controlling, Cost Accounting and Cost Management , 2014, p. 265
  8. Wolfgang Kilger, Flexible Plankostenrechnung , 1967, p. 56
  9. Thomas Joos, Controlling, Cost Accounting and Cost Management , 2014, p. 266
  10. Bernhard Schroeter, Operatives Controlling , 2002, p. 202
  11. Konrad Mellerowicz, costs and cost accounting: II - method: calculation and evaluation of cost accounting and operational accounting , 1958, p. 489, FN 1
  12. ^ Friedrich Wille, Planned and Standard Costing , 1952, p. 16