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School of Business | Department of Accounting | Accounting | 2015
Thesis number: 14548
Integration of information sources to improve management decision-making
Author: Heino, Antti
Title: Integration of information sources to improve management decision-making
Year: 2015  Language: eng
Department: Department of Accounting
Academic subject: Accounting
Index terms: laskentatoimi; accounting; johdon laskentatoimi; managerial accounting; mis; mis; integraatio; integration; tietämyksenhallinta; knowledge management; päätöksenteko; decision making
Pages: 102
Key terms: information systems, information Technology, decision-making, integration, data, information, analytics, ERP, AIS, IIS, CRM, CRISP-DM
The importance of information technology is widely acknowledged for modern organizations and the growth of its role only seems to be increasing Accounting professionals are increasingly working with information technology professionals and thus the need to understand modern information technology has grown significantly. (Granlund, 2009) Moreover, relationship between data warehousing, business intelligence tools and strategic decision making needs additional research (March and Hevner, 2007).

The objective of this study is to contribute to the discussion of how information systems can be utilized to support decision-making and management accounting. More specifically, the first research question determines how accounting data about transactions can be integrated with customer data and other external data sources to produce information that improves management decision-making. The second research question determines how information systems and their integration create benefits and challenges for management decision-making.

Based on the findings, it can be concluded that use of information systems leads to less riskier decisions and might result in better performance. The challenge is that data for the systems is not always available because it cannot be collected at a reasonable cost. There can also be organizational, technical, legal or communication barriers that prevent the use of information. Furthermore, it can be concluded that integration is desirable as it leads to faster and more reliable decisions, if system complexity can be avoided and usability of systems can be maintained. However, integration is not always achieved because of organizational barriers, legacy systems or disparate information technology providers.

It can also be concluded from the findings that the integration of information and analytics can also be utilized to isolate different factors to examine their impact, as it was demonstrated in the quantitative analysis. Moreover, a critical benefit of information systems with analytical capabilities is that they can be used to automate operative decisions if the decisions have to be made faster and more frequently than employees are able to perform them. Wide-spread use of automatic decisions may not be realistic in the short term, but decision-makers could increasingly utilize proposals that are given by an information system.

The literature chapters discuss accounting information systems, enterprise resource planning systems, integrated information systems and customer information systems. Further, it is presented how information is transformed into action through decision-making and what are the performance effects of information systems. In the methodology chapter case study method, the quantitative analysis of case company's data and the theme interviews are discussed.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.