Within the U.K. there is a group of companies whose operations are
almost wholly concerned with research and development. These
organisations have a number of special planning and control
problems. The objective of this study is to investigate these
special problems and to consider the application of computerised
accounting facilities in a research environment.
The first stage in this process is an investigation of the special
planning and control requirements of research organisations. This
is the result of personal experiences, the use of a questionnaire and visits to other research organisations.
Having defined the scenario of this research the next stage is the
identification of the role of the accounting system as part of the
planning and control procedures in use, following on from which
the general application of computerised accounting systems is
considered firstly by identifying the steps involved in the
introduction of a new system and secondly reviewing some of the
more commonly used software packages.
The process of accounting system change is one which most
companies will go through at intervals. It will occur when the
initial decision is made to switch from a manual to a computerised
solution and again when an existing system becomes deficient and
a decision is made to replace or upgrade it. The time and effort
involved in changing a system is often considerable. For this
reason companies may try to shortcut some of the stages involved
but this can have unfortunate consequences. To conclude, two case
studies are presented which indicate some of the perils and
possibilities associated with change.
A Master's Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Master of Philosophy at Loughborough University.