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Management Accounting Influence
(A) Transfer pricing and performance measurement relies upon the judgment of the management accountant to make a suitable choice of approach and to calculate suitable values where appropriate.
(B) Values which are suitable for performance measurement purposes are not necessarily suitable for decision making, planning and control purposes. For planning purposes, reasonable future forecasts or targets which meet long-term planning requirements present two acceptable approaches and incremental budgeting offers a third means by which values can be established in practice. For control purposes, values should ideally be set just above aspiration levels. For performance measurement purposes, values should be set which avoid sub-optimization and dysfunctional behavior and which further the objectives of the performance measurement scheme and of the company in general. It is unlikely that a single value can meet all requirements.
In some circumstances, multiple values can be established. In overcoming the problem of setting up reliable and valid values for control, planning, decision making and performance measurement needs, however, further problems may arise. Imagine that a company establishes one target for performance measurement purposes and another, lower value, for planning purposes. The planning value must be kept secret from the divisional manager if it is to motivate since some types of manager may lower aspiration levels to the planned target. Secrecy can have detrimental effects to the coordination and communication objectives of budgeting. Again, the behavioral consequences of establishing values are of paramount importance and the management accountant finds that effective accounting is partly based on setting up sound systems at the technical level and partly based on setting up systems which work for the people within the organization.(C) Emphasis on cost, profit and investment centre performance in the short term can have detrimental effects on the organization in the long term.
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