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eDiss - School of Business dissertations
|Johdon ohjausjärjestelmät muuttuvassa toimintaympäristössä
|Acta Universitatis oeconomicae Helsingiensis. A, 1237-556X; 270.
|2006 Thesis defence date: 2006-03-31
|» dissertation in pdf-format [794 KB]
|Control systems; Johtaminen; Management; Ohjausjärjestelmät
|606570 | Availability info (Aalto-Finna)
|This study contributes to the ongoing discussion of management accounting change, and especially the role of management accounting in strategic control. The purpose is to analyze the need for change in strategies and management control systems in changing business environments and also to investigate the interplay between management control systems and strategies, both corporate and competitive, as companies attempt to adapt to their changing business environment. In this research, a case study method is applied to a carrier, the selected target company, the Finnair group. A longitudinal dynamic examination of the strategies and control systems of the case company in different conditions of environmental change became possible when the research period was extended throughout the 1990s into the first years of the 2000s. The research aims to determine, firstly, the effect of environmental change on corporate and competitive strategies and management control systems. Second, the use of management control systems as levers of strategic change at different organizational control levels is examined.
The study is built on a summary introduction and three published case studies approaching from three different perspectives the research setting in an organizational context. In the first paper, a strategic airline route decision by the case company is analyzed in the context of how the target airline exploited management control systems to gain a sustainable competitive advantage in a situation of environmental change, a result of economic deregulation in the early 1990s. The second paper examines the type of management control systems, and in particular, the strategic management accounting methods used by the case company at a corporate level to bolster strategic control in the increasingly competitive business environment of the 1990s. Finally, the third paper examines the relationship of corporate strategy and parenting style with the design and use of management control systems at corporate and business unit levels at the beginning of the new millennium when sudden crises in the airline business environment severely affected management control.
The study adds, both theoretically and empirically, to the body of strategic management accounting research and can be summarized into three areas. First, three different perspectives into management control systems and the way they are applied at different organizational control levels are examined. In this study, the framework with four levers of strategic control developed by Simons is used to explain control at the corporate level, whereas in earlier studies the framework has been applied to control at the business unit level. Empirical results show that management control systems can be used in various ways in order to assist control at different organizational levels. Second, this study yields results on how management control systems can be used to affect strategic change in the endeavor to adapt organizations to new conditions in a continuously changing environment. The formulation of Balanced Scorecard as a strategic management system was perceived in the case company as a means for moving the parenting style away from a financial control style towards a strategic control orientation, forcing, however, the company to unify and standardize management control systems. Third, the normative parenting advantage framework of Goold and Campbell is criticized; it is refined by linking parenting styles with the strategic control typology of Simons. Finally, this study adds to the current empirical knowledge surrounding the usability of strategic management accounting in an organizational context.
|Thesis defence announcement:
University of Jyväskylä, Finland