An Empirical Investigation of Beyond Budgeting Practices
50 Pages Posted: 20 May 2020
Date Written: April 23, 2020
Some organizations have abandoned traditional annual budgeting and instead use an alternate approach known as Beyond Budgeting (BB). Our study presents the results of an exploratory analysis comparing 80 organizations that have implemented at least some of the BB practices to a group of 121 organizations that have not. First, we find that BB organizations tend to use
(i) high levels of decentralization,
(ii) flexible resource allocations without fixed timelines,
(iii) relative target setting, and
(iv) weak individual incentives.
Second, we find evidence suggesting that many BB implementers find it difficult to reduce the reliance on a fixed annual budget for decision making and on financial performance measures for performance evaluation. Third, we find that the likelihood and scope of BB implementation is negatively associated with the importance of long-term investment coordination. Finally, we examine whether combinations of various management control practices affect the likelihood of BB implementation, management control effectiveness, or control system gaming but find only weak interaction effects and associations among practices.
Keywords: Beyond Budgeting, Management Control, Planning, Performance Evaluation, Incentives
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