Building Effective SMA Systems Taking Advantage of Information Technology

Iacopo Ennio Inghirami

Abstract Strategic management accounting (SMA) is a set of valuable tools to manage a company at its best. However, it is expensive and complex to implement. After a first part of theoretical introduction about the SMA framework, this paper will attempt to assess the possible contribution from the information technologies (IT) in this field both theoretically and empirically. The second part describes a medium-size company and its experiences in implementing a SMA system. We will describe the Nespoli Group, which comprehends 45 medium-size firms localized all-over Europe and the issues linked to the management of such a differentiated multinational ensemble of entities. In the third part, we will propose a new approach to the use of information technology in SMA systems. For this purpose we will evaluate in depth a particular indicator, the service level agreement (SLA), to understand how IT can effectively improve SMA systems. Several final considerations conclude the paper.

Keywords Accounting information systems • Strategic management accounting • Business intelligence • ERP systems • Simulation • Modelling

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