The role of management accounting for strategy in growing competitive environment
Delouis-Girardi, Béatrice (2004), The role of management accounting for strategy in growing competitive environment, 27th EAA Annual Congress, 2004-04, Prague, République tchèque
TypeCommunication / Conférence
Conference title27th EAA Annual Congress
Conference countryRépublique tchèque
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Abstract (EN)In this paper we analyse the role of management accounting for strategy in a growing competitive environment. This analysis is based on a litterature review. This environment corresponds to the actual context of business, where firms, due to globalisation and new markets opening to competition, have to deal with more and more competition. The intensification of competition may lead to such a change in the competition level that firms are called to alter their strategy. Actually the competitive environment is one of the five forces Porter defined as determinant for strategy. In these conditions, we study both the role of management accounting in carrying out this strategy evolution and the influence of these changes in strategy on management accounting. Interactions between these two notions are in fact complex and reciprocal. The word "management accounting" amalgamates several notions : conventional management accounting, strategic management accounting, and strategic cost management. The main characteristic of conventional management accounting is to be intern-oriented, though strategic management accounting focuses on the outside environment. The strategic cost management is a variation of strategic management accounting. Both strategic cost management and strategic management acounting are in fact developments of conventional management accounting. A growing competition context has influences on management accounting. Two types of influences might be identify : a direct influence, and an indirect influence. When the evolution in management accounting is initiated by the firm itself, following an intensification of competition, we call it a direct influence. When it comes from external pressures, in a context of growing competition, we call it an indirect influence. External pressures represent external actors who constrain companies to change their management accounting systems. An example of this intermediation is the regulatory agencies. A change in management accounting due to a growing competition environment is not always, and anyway not only, something the firm undergoes, a kind of obligation if it wants to outlive in this environment. These changes may also be a mean the firm uses to take advantage of this increasing competition. In fact, a firm can use management accounting as a powerful tool to adapt its strategy to a growing competition. As management accounting materializes the new economic logics inherent in such strategic changes, it represents one of the best way to spread these logics around the firm. This spreading capacity comes from the general characteristics of management accounting. Management accounting allows firms to reach a competitive advantage. Initially based on internal cost’s analysis, management accounting can take three orientations depending on the strategy : the environmental and marketing orientation, the orientation towards competitors, and the long-term progress orientation. This makes management accounting particularly appropriate and efficient to drive the strategy adaptation to growing competition. Besides, some of the management accounting techniques, especially the Activity Based Costing (ABC), have more accurate strategic implications. Moreover, high competition reinforces the favourable effects of using ABC. Other strategic initatives, engaged in the same time as ABC, are sources of synergies and reinforce the role of management accounting for strategy in growing competitive environments.
Subjects / KeywordsRegulation; Strategy; Management Accounting
JELM41 - Accounting
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