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Zhongfang Jiang

DBA Graduate - 2009

Thesis title

controller management involvement context, role and determinants: a theory-building case study research

Supervisor(s)

Bernard Gumb
This study sets out to address specific research gaps regarding controller management using theory-building case study research. In a longitudinal participant observation study, this investigation considers the context, role, and determinants of controller management involvement. Findings in these three areas lead to an integrated framework. Regarding the role of controller management, this study establishes the value creation characteristics of business processes in the organization and the value creation management procedure for the management process. Understanding how business processes create value and how an organization manages the value creation process to create maximum value for shareholders are critical forms of business and management knowledge that the role of the controller requires. The role profile spans both business unit management and financial topics, as well as administration of the management process through planning, business execution, and reviewing. By participating in decisions during the plan—do—review process, the controller interacts and communicates with process owners and business unit management to facilitate better decisions about the value creation process. The dual role responsibilities of the controller appears inherently associated with controller management involvement and together contribute to value creation. The determinants of controller management involvement include the decision-making process of the controller, the process owner and the supervisor in the process, and the role effectiveness of controller management involvement. Controller management involvement is subject to the decisions of all actors in the process, including the controller, the process owner, and the supervisor. To enable the controller to contribute to the organizational value creation process, the organization must encourage these actors to make positive involvement decisions. Some of the findings support but others challenge previous findings in extant literature. This study also uncovers new features of controller management involvement that have been ignored in previous research. A range of practical recommendation measures and implementation approaches can help organizations enhance controller management involvement in their organizations. This thesis therefore contributes to theoretical literature by expanding understanding of controller management involvement phenomenon and also has managerial implications for practice.