Essays on Role of Strategic Management Accounting in an Organizational Setting Assignment

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The paper "Role of Strategic Management Accounting in an Organizational Setting" is a great example of a finance and accounting assignment.   The thesis statement of the Tillmann and Goddard (2008) is to critically understand the current management environment under which organizations operate. The decision to investigate the role of strategic management accounting within such a setting is therefore manifold. Firstly, Tillmann and Goddard (2008) have been influenced by the need to recognize that the survival of organizations in today’ s highly competitive global markets depends hugely on the functionalities of the organization’ s management accounting.

Therefore if issues of management accounting are elaborated then organizations will be able to allow for assessment of strategic situations. This view has also been supported by Goddard and Assad (2009) who opined that Tillmann and Goddard (2008) took the investigation to understand what strategic management accounting means to organizational actors. Secondly, the authors took the investigative approach within an organization setting to ‘ make-sense’ of previous studies that had attempted to review issues of strategic management accounting (Lye et al. , 2005). That is, Tillmann and Goddard (2008) sought to clarify complexities inherent in management accounting in practice that had transcended the simple economic decisions making strategies earlier portrayed in most literature materials including books.

Thirdly, the reason to investigate strategic management accounting in an organization setting was to make organisations comprehend, from the perspective of participants, ways in which accounting can be used when making sense of complex strategic decisions in such organizations. Unlike previous studies, Tillmann and Goddard (2008) attempt to make-sense---the sensibility is their introduction of the notion that there is need for a diverse set of accounting information for any organization to make meaningful decisions affecting their strategic management. Question 2: What are the important discussions studied by the authors in the prior literature These authors have been interested in strategic management accounting.

Their discussion has been characterized by an emphasis on normative research. For instance, McLarney and Chung (2010) noted their contributions on the issues related to competitor accounting and competitive position monitoring. Their decisions and discussions on modern accounting developments with regard to strategic components like activity-based costing are some of the aspects Tillmann and Goddard (2008) have studied in the prior literature.

For instance, in their study of ‘ Accounting and navigating legitimacy in Tanzanian NGOs ‘ , Goddard and Assad (2006) noted that in as much as normative work have been making contributions to strategic management accounting, it has not suffered from any serious drawback to be disconnected from basically what should be taking place in organisations. The authors have also attempted to study the connectedness of strategic management accounting with contingency theory. Their discussions have contributed to the general understanding of strategic management accounting.

However, studies such as McLarney and Chung (2010) noted a concern in their studies arguing that their approaches suffered from the common drawbacks of contingency theory in that their variable selections, as well as specification, were not exclusive as far as different organisations are concerned. More significantly, the prior discussions on the theory helped in streamlining accounting management in organization-based practices but showed little light regarding ways in which strategic management accounting practices can be implemented and used in practices. This view is related to their prior studies on accounting functions. According to their discussions, Tillmann and Goddard (2008) previously noted that the accounting is able to collect, both specifically and routinely, information or data regarding the external environment of organisation's operations, including information concerning performance and plans of competitors.

In most cases, their studies have been centralized on gathering ethnographic materials from different organisations so that they can explore ways in which management accounting in different organization settings can conceive their relationship with processes of strategy formulation as well as ways in which these organisations formulate strategic arguments. In particular, their case studies have been aimed at assessing ways in which companies use strategic management accounting in the formulation of strategies.

They found, from these studies that in case the issues are more strategic then less involvement the management accounting functions are realized. In as much as some studies have criticized early studies by Tillmann and Goddard (2008), it has contributed significantly in the development of strategic accounting management, specifically establishing a number of strategic accounting management techniques needed by contemporary organizations.


Goddard A. and Assad M.J., (2006), ‘Accounting and navigating legitimacy in Tanzanian NGOs ‘, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol 19, Issue: 3, pp 377 – 404.

Lye, J., Perera, H., Rahman A.,(2005), ‘ The evolution of accruals-based Crown (government) financial statements in New Zealand ‘, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 18, No. 6, pp. 784-815.

McLarney, C. and Chung, E. (2010), What happened is prologue: creative divergence and corporate culture fabrication, Management Decision, Vol. 38, No. 6, pp. 410-419.

Steinthorsson, R.S. and Söderholm, A. (2002), Strategic management as multi-contextual sensemaking in intermediate organisations, Scandinavian Journal of Management, Vol. 18, No. 2, pp. 233-248.

Tillmann, K., & Goddard, A. (2008). Strategic management accounting and sense-making in a multinational company. Management Accounting Research, 19(1), 80-102. Retrieved from

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