The Balanced Scorecard: The Effects of Assurance and Process Accountability on Managerial Judgment
Posted: 15 Apr 2005
The balanced scorecard is one of the major developments in management accounting in the past decade (Ittner and Larcker 2001). Lipe and Salterio (2000) find that managers ignore one of the key scorecard features, the inclusion of measures that are unique to the strategic objectives of a business unit, when making performance evaluation judgments. This study identifies and tests two approaches to reducing this "common measures bias." We examine whether increasing effort via invoking process accountability (i.e., requiring managers to justify to their superior their performance evaluations) and/or improving the perceived quality of the balanced scorecard measures (i.e., via an independent third party assurance report on the balanced scorecard) increases managers' usage of unique performance measures in their evaluations. Results suggest that either the requirement to justify an evaluation to a superior or the provision of an assurance report on the balanced scorecard increases the use of unique measures in managerial performance evaluation judgments. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.
Keywords: Balanced scorecard, performance measures, performance evaluation, debiasing, assurance, justification, and process accountability
JEL Classification: M40, M46, J33, L21
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation