The Classification of Dutch Controller Graduates by Activities: Images of a Profession
18 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2005
Date Written: February 28, 2005
There is conflicting evidence about the current stance of the controller profession. Some researchers say that controllers have evolved into strategic partners of their managers, while others assert that they are still mainly concerned with internal and external reporting. In order to assess the situation in the Netherlands, four universities conducted a survey among their graduates. Through the survey, coherent combinations of activities that controllers performed in practice were uncovered, which could subsequently be linked with a classification of controllers and several triggers that determine the activities underlying this classification. We conclude that Dutch controllers either chiefly operate as what we have called 'transformers' or 'watchmen', emphasizing specific combinations of activities related to internal reporting, external reporting, risk management, accounting information systems, and launching and supporting (changes in) control systems in their work. We find that whether one is bound to be a transformer or watchman is mainly affected by one's personality traits and background in finance and accounting.
Keywords: Management accountants, controller's actvities and groups
JEL Classification: M41, M46
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation