Home»Costing software from 4cost»4cost-structure | Standardised bottom-up calculations

What is 4cost-structure?

4cost-structure enables you to quickly create consistent, transparent, comprehensible detailed calculations with the highest cost accuracy. Through a company-wide standardisation of costing methods, you optimise your company processes and create a common understanding of costs.

4cost-structure significantly reduces the workload of all project participants throughout the company by simplifying complex entries with the help of wizards, check logics and templates. This minimises errors right from the start, increases the quality of calculations and accelerates the achievement of usable results. For more cost control and assured profitability.

  • Standardised cost calculation method

  • Transparent and comprehensible

  • Integrated benchmark data

Areas of application

  • Multi-level overhead costing

  • Preliminary costing, final costing

  • Quotation costing

  • Development-accompanying costing, Design-to-Cost

  • Should costing, purchase price analysis

  • Target costing

  • Value analysis

Transparent, consistent calculations with any level of detail

Understanding complex cost structures completely and making them usable for all relevant departments is the essence of profitable cost management. This is the only way to ensure that everyone involved can work together to sustainably way towards the overarching of corporate goals and remain successful in the future.

4cost-structure was specially developed as a standardised costing application to bundle and control the complex data of the different company divisions in an integrated and cross-departmental manner, in order to provide companies with consistent cost representations with the highest degree of accuracy.

Adapted to your needs and habits, you can create your products in 4cost-structure with any bottom-up structure as well as a level of detail according to your needs. Elements such as material, processes, target costs, one-off costs and measures are flexible in their arrangement. Doing this, you continue to work in an environment that is familiar to you.

Fully represent real-life situations. Setting up work systems in 4cost-structure enables you to take a complete and controlled view of several machines, production islands and production lines. The software takes into account the number of persons and their share of the various time categories (multi-machine operation), qualification and hourly rate.

Bring transparency into your calculation by displaying individual processes and work steps as well as calculating the associated processing times (cycle times, operating times, non-productive times, set-up times etc.).

In 4cost-structure you achieve detailing at the same level as in leading ERP systems and thus map complete actual situations. The software differentiates between internal and external overhead surcharges in order to represent supplier shares in the cost structures and to be able to treat them differently in terms of calculation. The nomenclature of overheads can be individually adapted to your company-specific requirements. In addition, 4cost-structure offers the possibility to preassign individual overheads across projects. Overheads that deviate from the standard are visually highlighted.

The schemes required for your costing can be individually defined and stored in 4cost-structure. For a quick mapping of business cases, you can also apply several costing templates to your project.

4cost-structure has a powerful wizard for the mathematical calculation of cycle times, weights, volumes, surfaces and quantities. The software already comes with a standard repertoire of formulas, so less technical expertise is required at this point. 4cost-structure also allows you to create and reuse your own formulas, for example to reflect in-house know-how. Thanks to the formula wizard, you achieve and get transparent, always comprehensible quantity calculations in all your projects.

4cost-structure saves the formulas in a database so that all users have easy central access to them. The administrative effort for distributing and updating the formulas is thus reduced.

The software automatically signals a hint when technology formulas generate a negative result. In conjunction with the other integrated checking and control mechanisms, this increases the quality of your calculations.

Use the finder integrated in 4cost-structure to find inconsistencies and logical errors in your calculation with just a few clicks in order to check the plausibility of your inputs.

Always keep an overview even in complex projects thanks to the interactive tree structure in 4cost-structure. You can move or copy individual elements and entire groups within the tree structure simply via drag & drop. To focus on the essentials, you can expand and collapse individual branches. Within the project tree, the software offers you the possibility to search for text as well as for colour markers.

See how 4cost-structure works

See how 4cost-structure works

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Fast simulations and detailed analyses

In order to be competitive as a company in a global environment and to identify growth potential, comprehensive analyses of the profitability of products and projects are required.

4cost-structure offers numerous possibilities to map different scenarios in a short time and to evaluate their profitability. All results are processed by the software according to the needs of the management and other project participants and made available for well-founded decision-making.

4cost-structure has a powerful report generator that automatically provides you with the most important information. All generated reports can be exported as PDF. This provides you with meaningful results that the management can use to quickly derive measures, identify opportunities and minimise risks.

4cost-structure includes numerous reporting templates, such as the ABC analysis for identifying cost drivers. In addition, the reports can be adapted to your company-specific needs.

A quick report function provides you with ad hoc detailed cost outputs and results overviews at any level.

Expand your cost analyses by transferring your detailed calculations from 4cost-structure to 4cost-aces via drag & drop to take advantage of the fast simulation and variant design with the parametric approach.

4cost-structure enables transparent variant analyses that support you in design-to-cost costing, reveal opportunities and risks and provide management with a secure basis for business case decisions, make-or-buy decisions and bid/no-bid decisions, among others.

4cost-structure includes a comprehensive “Search, Replace & Calculate” function that allows you to quickly make any changes in your project to examine their impact on the costing. The cost scenarios generated in this way are presented separately from each other and can be compared and evaluated comprehensibly at a glance using the report function.

Consider all options and find the optimal solution. 4cost-structure lets you explore scenarios based on numerous parameters. These include countries, quantities, batch sizes, locations, technologies, greenfield, brownfield. You can create neutral variants (without individual options) as well as variants with all options (surcharges, etc.).

For a particularly quick comparison of variants, you can switch individual elements on and off within your calculation with one click.

4cost-structure helps you to validate supplier purchase prices in a comprehensible way by examining purchased parts in the software in full detail with regards to their pricing structure. The generated results serve to you as a basis for argumentation in negotiations with suppliers for the reduction of your purchase prices.

4cost-structure contains many functions with which you can comfortably increase the quality of your calculation.

  • Machine hourly rate calculator for identifying potential for reducing machine hourly rates, for plausibility checks and validation of supplier machine hourly rates and as a negotiation support for purchasing
  • Calculation of material usage and reimbursement with any reference values and units
  • Consideration of inflation rates and project durations (escalation)
  • Consideration of uncertainties in the calculation (degrees of hardness)
  • Choice of currency at any level

Efficient costing in the team

Innovative processes and software-supported solutions are needed to increase the output of the company’s own value engineering and to gain a speeding advantage over the competition.

As a central functional unit for costing, 4cost-structure facilitates joint work on cost analysis projects and promotes the exchange of knowledge and information within the company. Doing this, the use of the software contributes to a constant optimisation of your costing processes, which is reflected in higher speeds of execution and a shortened decision cycle.

Save a lot of time by eliminating time-consuming research and quickly obtain usable results for well-founded decision-making. 4cost-structure provides you with comprehensive, up-to-date, country-specific benchmark data on materials, machines and personnel, which we update regularly. All databases can be customised and extended by you according to your company’s specific needs. In addition, you have the option of keeping all your projects up to date in a matter of seconds via a central database – for consistent data transparency throughout the entire team.

Increase the effectiveness of your work by using the reusable templates for work plans, process sequences and standard technologies integrated in 4cost-structure. These can be easily inserted into your existing project structure via drag & drop and individually adapted to your requirements and situations.

Create your own templates for frequently used process sequences and share them centrally with your team to standardise calculations across the company and the reduction of errors.

Bring transparency to your calculations with 4cost-structure by inserting notes. Entering information in this way, calculation paths and premises are documented transparently and comprehensibly for your team.

The option of setting colour markers and sorting according to them provides additional orientation in the calculation and makes it easier for you to keep track.

Cross-system data exchange

Companies usually use numerous software systems that provide information in different file formats.

4cost-structure supports data exchange with all common and known systems. A unique feature is the ability to switch easily between the top-down and bottom-up calculation approaches.

Thanks to a bidirectional interface, you can transfer results generated in 4cost-aces for components and assemblies to 4cost-structure via drag & drop for closer examination and further refinement. For a consistent cost view without loss of information across all project phases.

In particular, development-accompanying costing benefits from the integrated approach of the 4cost software suite, as early phases with limited information are combined with late phases with a high degree of information. For a consistent cost view without loss of information across all project phases.

4cost-structure offers numerous options for importing your data from Excel files, including quick import, sublevel import and target import. Based on the imported information, the software automatically builds the project structure including substructures for material, machines, personnel and target costs. Thanks to a sophisticated mapping function, a standardised import configuration is guaranteed.

All data and results generated in 4cost-structure can be exported as Excel files and thus made usable for further processing in other software applications.

The use of 4cost software offers many advantages

The use of 4cost software in your company opens and offers many advantages

Flexible licensing model
Regular updates for software and databases
Offline capability
Personal support
Intensive product training
Central file, user and rights management

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