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Relevance re-focused ‐ a preliminary exploration of management accounting in 'new' business models

Relevance re-focused ‐ a preliminary exploration of management accounting in 'new' business models

Kristandl, Gerhard ORCID: 0000-0002-8461-0935 and Quinn, Martin (2012) Relevance re-focused ‐ a preliminary exploration of management accounting in 'new' business models. In: 9th Annual Conference for Management Accounting Research (ACMAR), 8-9 March 2012, WHU Otto-Beisheim-School of Management, Vallendar, Germany. (Unpublished)

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This paper explores how management accounting has evolved over recent years with the advent of web-based businesses without “bricks and mortar” and “high street shops”.

Johnson and Kaplan (1987) argued that a dominant influence of financial accounting was one of the major reasons why management accounting had remained fairly static up to the 1980’s. Ever since, “newer” and “more relevant” techniques have been reported within the management accounting literature e.g throughput accounting (Dugdale and Jones, 1998) or strategic management accounting (Kaplan and Norton, 1992). Within the past ten years, though, the pace of technological change has impacted how business is done. Such change may also have influenced the way how businesses make decisions, and in turn, how they apply management accounting practices.

Using constructs on general organisational change (Dawson, 2003) in an exploratory case study, we attempt to interpret the process of change in the business and resulting changes in management accounting. The case is “WebAccounting” (WA), which offers accounting software to small business online. Preliminary results show that there was a shift in focus from decision-relevant costs to decision-relevant revenues. Key performance indicators are mainly non-financial, based on and driven by the increased focus on revenues rather than costs. Additionally, WA inadvertently used some traditional management accounting techniques, albeit in a re-focused manner.

Due to this paper’s exploratory nature, we cannot claim generalisability of results. However, given the novel nature of our findings and the lack of research to date on new business models and management accounting practices, we hope to encourage further research.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Paper)
Additional Information: Parallel Session 2 A (English with Discussant)
Uncontrolled Keywords: management accounting, cloud computing, decision-relevant revenues
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5601 Accounting
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business > Networks and Urban Systems Centre (NUSC) > Centre for Business Network Analysis (CBNA)
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:19

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