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Study guide for Controller's Function

The study guide is provided to guide you through the course material in a step by step format.

Reading assignments are for The Controller's Function by Steven M. Bragg.

1) The Controller's Job

Reading Assignment: Chapter 1 <<>> Review Question: # 1

The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

  • History of the controller's function
  • Main job functions
  • Job description
  • Job Qualifications
  • Organizational structure of the accounting department
  • Ethics

2) Internal Control

Reading Assignment: Chapter 2  <<>> Review Question: # 2-8

The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

    • Basic elements
    • Controls to use in your business
    • Elements of internal accounting control
    • Levels of controls
    • Responsibility for proper internal controls
    • Fraud
    • Auditing for fraud

    3) Planning and the Strategic Plan

    Reading Assignment: Chapter 3 <<>> Review Question: # 9-12

    The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

    • Strategic plan overview
    • System of plans
    • Planning cycle
    • Planning roles
    • Planning timing and planning period
    • Business mission
    • Developing long-range objectives
    • Developing long-range strategies

    4) Long-Range Financial Plan

    Reading Assignment: Chapter 4 <<>> Review Questions: # 13

    The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

    • Layout and purpose
    • Trends of revenues and profits
    • Capital investments
    • Cash flows and financing requirements
    • Risk analysis
    • Breakdown by business unit/product line/geography
    • Financial position

      5) Annual Plan

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 5 <<>> Review Questions: # 14-21

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • System of plans
      • Annual planning cycle
      • Role of the controller
      • Sales planning
      • Steps in developing the near-term sales plan
      • Methods for determining the sales forecast
      • Useful sources for forecasting information
      • Break-even chart
      • Changes in the sales mixture, sales price, and the cost

      6) Sales

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 6 <<>> Review Questions: # 22-26

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Role of the controller
      • Sales analysis
      • Sales standards
      • Sales reports
      • Product pricing

      7) Distribution Expenses

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 7 <<>>Review Question: # 27-29

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Role of the sales manager
      • Analyzing distribution costs
      • Analyzing by application
      • Setting the distribution budget

      8) Direct Materials and Labor

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 8 <<>> Review Question: # 30-35

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Objectives
      • Role of the controller
      • Types of cost systems
      • Measuring and controlling direct material costs
      • Controlling direct material quantities
      • Measuring and controlling direct labor costs
      • Target costing

      9) Overhead

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 9 <<>>Review Questions: # 36-40

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Need for overhead controls
      • Responsibilities of the controller
      • Account classifications
      • Fixed and variable costs
      • Cost allocation
      • Controlling overhead
      • Production reports

      10) General and Administrative Expenses

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 10 <<>>Review Questions: # 41-42

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Functions involved
      • Accounting for and allocating administrative expenses
      • "Unique" expenses
      • Controlling costs

      11) Cash and Investments

      Reading Assignment:  Chapter 11<<>>Review Questions: # 43-47

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Objectives of cash management
      • Role of the controller
      • Cash collections
      • Cash disbursements
      • Investment of short-term funds
      • Accounting for records of investment
      • Cash and investment controls

      12) Receivables

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 12<<>>Review Questions: # 48-49

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Functions of the credit department
      • Shortening the receivables cycle
      • Reserve for doubtful accounts
      • Receivables fraud and control

      13) Inventory

      Reading Assignment:Chapter 13 <<>>Review Questions: # 50-54

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Inventory management systems
      • Inventory tracking
      • Physical inventory procedure
      • Inventory valuation
      • Inventory fraud and controls

      14) Property, Plant, and Equipment

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 14 <<>>Review Questions: # 55-57

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Role of the controller
      • Capital budgeting
      • Postproject appraisals
      • Other aspects fo fixed assets

      15) Liabilities

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 15 <<>>Review Questions: # 58-59

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Objectives
      • Controls
      • Credit agreement provisions
      • Debt capacity
      • Bond ratings
      • Leverage

      16) Equity

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 16 <<>>Review Questions: # 60-61

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Role of the controller
      • Cost of Capital
      • Dividend policy
      • Long-term equity planning
      • Repurchasing common shares
      • Capital stock records

      17) Operational Accounting

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 17 <<>>Review Questions: # 62-63

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Creating departmental job descriptions
      • Creating a departmental training program
      • Clearing out excess documentation
      • Documenting all major processes
      • Scheduling the department
      • Correcting the underlying cause of errors
      • Use of best practices
      • Outsourcing selected accounting functions

      18) Closing Procedures

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 18 <<>>Review Questions: # 64-65

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Selecting the fiscal year
      • Selecting interim reporting periods
      • Quick close

      19) SEC Filings

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 19 <<>>Review Questions: None

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Form 8-K
      • Annual 10-K and Quarterly 10-Q Reports
      • Timing of Annual and Quarterly Report Filings
      • Form S-1
      • Form S-3
      • Form S-8
      • Forms Requiring Payment to the SEC
      • Fedwire Payments

      20) Performance Measurements and Trends

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 20 <<>>Review Questions: # 66-69

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Performance measurements
      • Trends
      • Interrelationship of ratios
      • Just-in-time ratios

      21) Financial Analysis

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 21 <<>>Review Questions: # 70-74

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Analyzing financial statements
      • Analyzing working capital
      • Analyzing capital investments
      • Analyzing capacity utilization
      • Analyzing financing options
       

      22) Cost Reduction

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 22 <<>>Review Questions: # 75

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Types of Reports Used for Cost Reduction Analysis
      • Spend Analysis Overview
      • Spend Database
      • Supplier Consolidation Analysis
      • Parts Consolidation Analysis
      • Maintenance, Repair, and Operations Item Analysis
      • Spend Compliance
      • Spend Analysis Reports
      • Workforce Reduction Analysis
      • Workforce Reduction Issues
      • Workforce Reduction Alternatives
      • 5S Analysis
      • Check Sheets
      • Error Quantification
      • Fixed Cost Analysis
      • Ishikawa Diagrams
      • Value Stream Mapping
      • Waste Analysis

      23) Taxes

      Reading Assignment: Chapter 23 <<>>Review Questions: # 76

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Tax strategy
      • Tax organization
      • Role of the tax manager
      • Tax records
      • Tax versus book accounting
      • Proper classification of accounts

      24) Selecting a Financial Information System

      Reading Assignment:  Chapter 24 <<>>Review Questions: # 77-80

      The learning objectives for this lesson are to gain an understanding of:

      • Reasons to purchase software
      • Defining systems requirements
      • Existing system documentation
      • Joint sessions
      • Preparing the request for proposal
      • distribution of the request for proposal
      • Review of the vendor's completed proposal
      • Reference calls
      • Demonstration
      • Site visits
      • Cost of the system
      • Final selection
      • Contract negotiations
      • Postimplementation review

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