A theoretical and empirical study of performance measurement : a challenge for management accounting information systems
Management accounting information systems (MAISs) play an important role in supporting continuous improvement efforts and management decision-making activities. MAISs provide manufacturing companies with internal financial and some non-financial information required for the three essential functions of planning, controlling and performance measurement. According to Drury (2000), "management accounting systems accumulate, classify, summarize and report information that will assist employees within an organization in their decision-making, planning, control and performance measurement activities". Performance measurement is one of the most important aspects of MAISs. The development of the concept of performance measurement is the direct result of several dramatic changes in the way today's business environment is structured and how companies employ world class manufacturing (WCM) philosophies or techniques to compete for marketplace advantages. These changes have impacted on the way companies are organised and in skills required to manage, motivate, and empower the workforce to support continuous improvement. Other changes, especially in the Egyptian manufacturing environment, have come from the effect of international agreements, such as General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and World Trade Organisation (WTO), and organisational pressures, such as the ISO 9000 programme. This thesis presents a theoretical and empirical study to determine 'what', why', and 'how' performance measurement systems (PMSs) are changing, as a challenge for MAISs, with the adoption of Just in Time (JIT) and Total Quality Management (TQM) philosophies. A discussion of these questions is presented in Chapter 8. In order to investigate how PMSs can best be used to support the continuous improvement philosophy of JIT and TQM, a model for developing PMSs in a JIT and TQM environment was constructed (see Figure 8.1). This study has used a qualitative method of research. The research findings and the model for developing PMSs in a JIT and TQM environment have been obtained from a literature review and data collected from two Egyptian pharmaceutical companies. The model, as it stands, is exploratory in nature. It proposes a body of ideas that form a new theory formulated for developing PMSs in a JIT and TQM environment. The model could be applicable to manufacturing companies, which have started or plan to implement JIT and TQM philosophies, since it provides a framework for the development and use of PMSs, rather than prescriptive lists of measures and reports that should be used. Norreklit (2000) indicated that models are needed which deepen our understanding of how PMSs are created, and to this end MAISs research has to make its contribution.