Centre for Learning

Finance for Operations Managers, Engineers and Specialists

Business operations such as manufacturing, sales and logistics can be the major driver of both positive and negative cash flows.

This course is designed to help operations people, and the specialists who support them, to understand the impact of their actions on the financial state of the business.

It gets the basic ideas across in a visual, concrete, way so that ‘hands on’ managers can relate to them.


  • Tailored for people who need to improve their business and management skills.
  • Practical, visual, explanations of financial concepts
  • Bring your own financial reports and learn what’s behind them
  • Understand what your accountant is telling you
  • Prepare capital proposals to maximise the chance of approval.

Learn How to…

  • Understand the impact of management decisions on the financial results
  • Contribute to budget building without “shooting yourself in the foot”
  • Evaluate alternative actions for financial contribution

Course Objectives

On completion of this course, participants should be able to:

  • link their actions to the drivers of financial performance
  • understand their impact on the company’s bottom line
  • communicate much more competently and persuasively in the fundamental language of business.



1. Finance—the language of management

  • Financial concepts and terminology explained using a practical, visual approach with a model company as an example
  • The impact of inventory movements on P&L
  • Linkages between the Balance Sheet – which gives a snap shot of the assets, and the P&L – which summarises what happened
  • Fixed and variable costs and profit contribution
  • Standard costs, over absorption and under absorption
  • Activity based costs.
  • Exercises: Construct and evaluate Profit and Loss, Balance Sheet and components of cost for the example companies.

2. Financial impact of management decisions

How to evaluate everyday decisions like…

  • capitalise or charge to expense?
  • lease or buy?
  • overtime or hire?
  • Exercises: evaluate a series of example decision

3. Understand performance reports

Untangle the figures and reasons behind them, identify…

  • volume effects
    price impacts
  • cost influences, etc.
  • Exercises: Interpret example performance reports against trends and against budget.

4. How to build budgets

  • Forecast volumes, cost and wage inflation and build it into the budget.
  • Exercise: Construct a budget for a model company.

5. Workshop

  • Understand your own financial reports
  • Estimate the impact of your own decisions
  • Build components of your own budget.


6. Capital budgets

  • The difference between a capital budget and capital proposals.

7. Capital proposals

  • identifying alternatives
  • justification – writing a good story
  • financial and non financial justifications
  • cash flow analysis
  • time adjusted rate of return (internal rate of return)
  • net present value
  • pay back period
  • presentation for maximum impact.

8. Workshop

  • Compilation and evaluation of example capital proposals—including proposals raised by yourself.

Alan Long is a Chartered Management Accountant, and a Chartered statistician. He developed this program at the request of a major Australian group of companies and has adapted it continuously over a twelve year period. Alan enjoys an excellent reputation as an instructor and wrote the STATMAN series of training books.


  • Days 1 & 2 only $795 excluding GST
  • Day 3 only $495 excluding GST
  • All three days, $1,195 excluding GST.

Fee includes Training Manual, computer spreadsheet files for data analysis, lunch & refreshments. Please refer to our standard terms and conditions for further registration details.

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

© Copyright Centre for Learning 2018