Business and Management
Submitted By nanabolbol
Continuing on from my previous post about the October 2007 entrance examination, here are some observations about the CMA SLP examination just written on August 20, 2008.
For those that don’t know, the backgrounder document (18 pages) was given out 48 hours in advance of the examination, while during the examination an “additional information” paper is handed out which was 8 pages that describes the various ongoings of the business. The additional information is what has to be analyzed, not the backgrounder.
The backgrounder dealt with a hockey team, and the paper goes into detail about how the management of the team functioned, even including a chart of hockey players, their positions, and their salaries. Turns out that the additional information paper had little to do with hockey.
We received the backgrounder on Monday, and I devoted a few hours to reading it and also thinking of case scenarios that are likely to be in the additional information paper. This research was useful as the main question was asked in the paper.
When one condensed the additional information, there were three decisions to write about – a purchase or renovate decision regarding a stadium – this involved knowing present value, weighted average cost of capital, time value of an annuity, a capital cost allowance calculation and factoring in taxes. What would take 20 minutes to do in Excel (and very accurately) took about an hour and 30 minutes to do on paper.
The second major issue dealt with whether to outsource or keep a concession stand service. This was a simple calculation adding and subtracting dollars as a percent of revenues, and did not take very long to write about. There was more qualitative stuff about performance management with this question than quantitative material.
Finally, the third issue dealt with whether to settle or take a lawsuit to court. They gave percentages for...