The management accountant's role in the implementation and operation of a total quality management programme

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Theses / Dissertations
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Master of Commerce
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Fowler, Carolyn Joy

Management accounting's objective is to provide management with information that supports management's responsibility for planning, controlling and decision making. The management accountant performs a variety of tasks that fulfil these objectives. As organisations adapt to today's globalised business environment, they are implementing new management techniques. One of these is Total Quality Management (TQM). It has been suggested that the traditional management accounting tasks have dysfunctional consequences in a TQM environment, and management accounting must develop new tasks and accounting systems that provide management with the information they require in a TQM firm. The literature review identified the possible tasks a management accountant could perform in the implementation and operation of a TQM programme. To test these hypothesised roles, a mail survey of forty-eight New Zealand firms that were thought to have impiemented TQM was used. The results of this research suggest that those management accountants have a limited role to play in the implementation of a TQM programme. This role appears to be confined to three areas: participation in the implementation committee; implementing TQM into the accounting area; and identifying the firm's external and internal customers and suppliers, and ascertaining their requirements. However, once TQM is operational, management accountants appear to have more involvement, especially in the provision of the accounting data required to operate the TQM programme.

Managerial accounting, Total quality management
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