Cost & Margin Intelligence

Our Expertise

Accelerate performance with intelligent cost and margin data

Do you have the cost and margin information you need to make the decisions necessary to drive your competitive advantage? To survive and thrive in today’s highly competitive global marketplace, you need to understand where you make money — and where you don’t. Big data alone won’t reveal which products and services actually contribute to your success, which customers are profitable, or what changes you need to make across the enterprise to increase profitability. We’ll arm you with intelligent data so you can achieve optimal operational and financial performance.

Our cost and margin intelligence experts understand that no two organizations are the same, so we tailor our solutions to your specific environment to accurately model material, labor, and overhead costs based on key drivers like yield, productivity, and capacity utilization. We combine our deep industry expertise and experience with our customized data analytics models to provide you with pragmatic, focused, and actionable insights.

Whether you’re a domestic organization or a billion-dollar global company — or whether you’re public, private, or private equity-owned — we’ve seen it all. Our experts have a deep understanding of industry trends and issues, and we’ll work with you to accelerate performance. Let us help you take a new approach to cost and margin intelligence. Contact us today.

Gain visibility into your product life cycle costs, and strengthen your strategic decisions

Intelligent cost management analysis leads to improved productivity, lower costs, and increased revenue. Our specialists help you improve organizational alignment and give you the right techniques to win the most profitable work.

Services include:

Data intelligence
Are you data rich, but information poor? Data alone isn’t enough. Our cost and margin intelligence experts will create custom, interactive dashboards that translate massive amounts of data into simple, easy-to-understand formats. Our team will help provide meaning to your data to bring actionable information to the forefront — so you’ll know what changes to make to increase profitability.
Education and training
Do your costing and quoting processes incorporate industry best practices? We integrate education and training into every project because a well-designed process can fail without the necessary discipline and structure. We’ll provide cross-functional training in all costing and quoting methodologies as needed, including standard costing, variance analysis, actual costing, job costing, and activity-based costing.
ERP cost system optimization
Are you confident your ERP system is providing accurate cost and margin information? Whether it’s inaccurate master-file data, inappropriately configured costing options, inaccurate overhead application methods, or a host of other common challenges, our consultants can help you get the most out of your ERP costing system. We’ll assess and clean up your data, align your work center definitions, and improve your overhead rates so that your cost system provides you with timely, accurate information.
Intelligent cost and margin modeling
Do you have transparent insights into key cost drivers and how they impact your margins? From product proliferation, process complexity, and automation, to volume variability and varying logistics requirements, you need a model that’s comprehensive yet scalable and flexible enough to address changing business conditions. We’ll tailor a practical cost and margin model to your specific needs, so you gain new insight into operations and profitability.
Manufacturing footprint optimization
Is your manufacturing footprint optimized so you can respond to changing conditions, manage risk, and remain competitive? Have tariffs, and other macroeconomic factors caused you to reconsider your footprint? There’s a variety of internal and external considerations that drive the need to review and optimize your manufacturing footprint. We provide visibility into true costs to help you make an informed decision and keep pace with a complex global manufacturing environment. Our consultants have expertise in supply chain, real estate, talent, international markets, and operations to evaluate, optimize, and implement your new manufacturing footprint.
Product costing and quoting process improvement
Is a sluggish, inaccurate quoting process costing you new business? Whether implementing or optimizing commercially available quoting and estimating software, or developing a Microsoft Excel-based model, we’ll tailor a solution to your company. Looking at activities throughout the quoting process — from customer requests, to pricing approval, to cost breakdowns and pricing support — our experts can streamline the process from weeks to days (and in some cases, hours) while improving accuracy.
Systems assessments
How does your costing or quoting system and process compare to best-in-class options? We’ll assess your processes, operations, and costing/quoting system to identify opportunities for improvement. Assessments can range from one day to weeks depending on your needs and will include a report outlining observations, implications, recommendations, and a roadmap for improvement. We can also help select and implement new tools while ensuring that they interface seamlessly with your ERP system.


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Invest in the right products. Target the right customers. Optimize your organization.

Client Experience

It’s not just what we can do for you — it’s how we do it

Our consultants have walked in your shoes and understand the challenges of developing accurate, and timely cost and margin intelligence. This firsthand experience, along with our personal approach to each project, means we’ll provide you with actionable solutions, not just a big-picture numbers viewpoint. You can also trust our advice will be independent. Because we don’t sell costing software or believe in a one-size-fits-all approach, we can provide objective, third-party insights to help you succeed.

According to Jon Wood, our cost and margin intelligence practice leader, a relationship with us can give you confidence and peace of mind. “I value our team’s dedication to each client. We dig in and really get to know their needs and objectives. It’s not just about solving the issue at hand but making sure we provide practical solutions and arming our clients with the necessary tools and insights for confident, decision-making that supports their strategic and operational goals.”

Our clients say

I have a long-term relationship with the firm and, as a result, have high expectations. The Cost & Margin Intelligence team are consummate professionals. The team listened to our needs, goals, and ideas. They designed an innovative costing model solution that simplified a complex process and allowed us to expand our operating model, enter new business markets, and as a result, grow our business and increase revenue. Jon and Eric knocked it out of the park and brought a new approach to the table that helped our team better understand our data and act on insights.

W. Dodd Russell
CEO, Skilled Manufacturing, Inc.

We brought in Plante Moran to help us compile our costing data into a robust information system. We wanted to have a holistic understanding of our overhead costs down to the brand, pillar, and SKU. It grew from there. Now that we have this data, what can we do with it? Can we determine our shipping, handling, transportation, and warehousing costs at that same level of detail? After we finished the costing project, we wanted to know our cost to serve, so we asked Plante Moran to help with that as well.

They brought in experts who had tremendous experience not only within their areas of specialty but also with consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies. Their breadth of knowledge quite honestly exceeded our in-house capabilities. They identified critical items that we hadn’t considered, which allowed us to streamline the project and get it done faster and more efficiently.

For both projects, the team exceeded our expectations as well as what we had laid out in the project plan initially. Everyone at Gorilla Glue had a very positive impression of the collaboration and knowledge base from the primary team. We were able to get the project done two weeks early, which was critical because it allowed us to test our new standard methodology in our ERP system. From a timing standpoint and project deliverable standpoint, Plante Moran over-delivered on both. There were no surprises, the project was finished quickly and efficiently, and they really felt like an extension of our team. The level of partnership was incredible. Plante Moran showed up, got it done, and we feel well equipped as we grow and our company changes.

Justin Grout
Director of Operations Finance, The Gorilla Glue Company