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Interfaces of control. Technocratic and socio-ideological control in a global management consultancy firm

Alvesson, Mats LU and Kärreman, Dan LU (2004) In Accounting, Organizations and Society 29(3-4). p.423-444
Abstract
This paper investigates a variety of forms of management control in a large management consultancy company. The very high level of compliance with corporate objectives among employees is highlighted and singled out as a phenomenon worth exploring. The company exhibits a rich variety of various formal control devices focusing on financial issues as well as human resources. The paper shows that these do not fully work according to intention and that their control effects do not comply that well with the bureaucratic- technocratic logic they rest upon. Technocratic control systems are instead identified as non-obvious sources of socio-ideological control. The paper emphasizes the interface between different forms of control and argues for a... (More)
This paper investigates a variety of forms of management control in a large management consultancy company. The very high level of compliance with corporate objectives among employees is highlighted and singled out as a phenomenon worth exploring. The company exhibits a rich variety of various formal control devices focusing on financial issues as well as human resources. The paper shows that these do not fully work according to intention and that their control effects do not comply that well with the bureaucratic- technocratic logic they rest upon. Technocratic control systems are instead identified as non-obvious sources of socio-ideological control. The paper emphasizes the interface between different forms of control and argues for a more symbolic, meaning-focusing view on bureaucratic and output measurement control. (C) 2003 Published by Elsevier Ltd. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Accounting, Organizations and Society
volume
29
issue
3-4
pages
423 - 444
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • wos:000220265100010
  • scopus:1342265015
ISSN
0361-3682
DOI
10.1016/S0361-3682(03)00034-5
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
66e2d6d6-b844-4591-9227-0090caae1572 (old id 899200)
date added to LUP
2008-01-10 10:32:20
date last changed
2017-11-19 04:04:34
@article{66e2d6d6-b844-4591-9227-0090caae1572,
  abstract     = {This paper investigates a variety of forms of management control in a large management consultancy company. The very high level of compliance with corporate objectives among employees is highlighted and singled out as a phenomenon worth exploring. The company exhibits a rich variety of various formal control devices focusing on financial issues as well as human resources. The paper shows that these do not fully work according to intention and that their control effects do not comply that well with the bureaucratic- technocratic logic they rest upon. Technocratic control systems are instead identified as non-obvious sources of socio-ideological control. The paper emphasizes the interface between different forms of control and argues for a more symbolic, meaning-focusing view on bureaucratic and output measurement control. (C) 2003 Published by Elsevier Ltd.},
  author       = {Alvesson, Mats and Kärreman, Dan},
  issn         = {0361-3682},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3-4},
  pages        = {423--444},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Accounting, Organizations and Society},
  title        = {Interfaces of control. Technocratic and socio-ideological control in a global management consultancy firm},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0361-3682(03)00034-5},
  volume       = {29},
  year         = {2004},
}