Changes in management accounting practices in Malaysia

Tuan Zainun Tuanmat (Faculty of Accountancy, University Teknologi MARA, Malaysia)
Malcolm Smith (School of Accounting Finance & Economics, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Australia)

Asian Review of Accounting

ISSN: 1321-7348

Publication date: 20 September 2011



Malaysia has moved towards global competitiveness. As an important contributor to the Malaysian economy, this change makes manufacturing companies in Malaysia need to ensure that their business operation and management cope with the current changes. To do this they need to reconsider their existing management accounting practices more than ever. Therefore, this study is carried out to determine how changes in management accounting practices in Malaysian manufacturing companies took place in response to a changing business environment and the effect of changes on performance.


A structured questionnaire survey is used to collect the data from various manufacturing companies in Malaysia. The Federation of Malaysian Manufacturer Directory is used as a sampling frame.


The results show that the level of changes in management accounting practices increased over the five year period from 2003 to 2007. The changes mostly occurred through the introduction of new practices, replacement of existing practices and modification of the way existing practices were used. Findings in this study also reveal that there are no significant differences in management accounting practices among local and foreign companies, or between small and medium, and large companies. This study also support previous research in terms of the positive relationship between changes in management accounting practices and performance.


Taken together this research outcome has contributed to the existing management accounting change literature especially in a developing economy setting.



Zainun Tuanmat, T. and Smith, M. (2011), "Changes in management accounting practices in Malaysia", Asian Review of Accounting, Vol. 19 No. 3, pp. 221-242.

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