Self-Study Course Details
Course Description

Budgeting consumes a massive amount of time and resources. It's a stressful and busy time. Are there ways to improve the effectiveness of the investment we make in the budget process? Can we make better budgeting decisions that lead to higher performance? 

There are options within and beyond traditional budgeting. Each company should consider these options and decide which could improve their budgeting process. Budgeting has many benefits that we can continue to capture and build upon.

In this course, Rob Stephens will start by outlining the benefits and challenges of budgeting. Throughout this course Rob will provide tips and alternative budget systems that can mitigate these challenges and capture more benefits.

Rob will explore a series of budgeting alternatives. We'll look at rolling forecasts, zero-based budgeting, activity-based budgeting, and many others. We'll also look at operating without a budget. Each alternative has pros and cons that I'll list. 

Each lesson in this section gives an overview of the budget alternative to help you decide whether you want to pursue that alternative further. Even if you don't fully adopt these alternatives, you can find ideas to improve your budgeting process.

The course concludes by revisiting budgeting process challenges and how the tips and alternatives presented in the course can address or mitigate those challenges.

Note: This course is part of a three-part series "Better Budgeting." The three parts are:

The individual courses can be taken on their own (links above) or as part of the full course HERE

Learning Objectives
  • Identify budgeting benefits and challenges
  • Recall the differences between traditional costing and activity-based costing
  • Recognize the pros and cons of budgeting alternatives
  • None
Advanced Preparation


Author Details
  • Robert Stephens
    Robert Stephens

    Rob Stephens is the Founder of CFO Perspective, which provides continuing education courses for CPAs and financial management courses for business advisors and staff. He has been quoted in Forbes, U.S. News and World Report, Business Insider, Business News Daily, and many other news sources. Rob has a 25-year career that includes serving as CFO for two banks and a health clinic system. He was also Director of Operations at a $4 Billion bank and SVP of Finance of a $2 Billion credit union. Rob is an adjunct instructor for the MBA program at Gonzaga University.

    Rob holds a Masters of Science in Personal Financial Planning and a Graduate Certificate in Financial Therapy from Kansas State University. He received a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Washington and is a CPA.

NASBA Sponsor
  • National Registry of CPE Sponsors for the QAS self-study delivery method
    Encoursa is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website:


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    Self-Study: CPE certificates will be accessible through your dashboard immediately after passing the qualified assessment.

    For specific instructions on accessing your CPE, please see our FAQ section on our support page.

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