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Designing and Implementing Performance Management Systems

FINAL EXAM

Please answer the following questions and upload your answers on Blackboard (assignment in the
final exam folder of the course content) before the 1st of May.

Your answers should be about one page per question (with1.5 spacing and 12 font)

Question 1 (5 points):

You have been hired at a company that is becoming data-driven, and the Chief Data Officer asks you
to assess the usefulness of management controllers — will you still need them? Present a balanced
argument highlighting your own views. To increase the quality of your arguments, try to be specific,
give examples and refer to research (e.g. papers discussed in the course).

Question 2 (5 points):

It is generally accepted that the organization of responsibilities and accountabilities in companies


should be consistent with the principle of controllability. Still, is it always possible and is it always
advisable? Explain your answer carefully and give detailed examples of situations in which the
application of the principle of controllability might be difficult. You can choose examples of your choice
and/or base your answer on the cases analyzed in the course.

Question 3 (6 points):

Analyze the following dialogue by highlighting what you think is right and what is questionable, and by
mobilizing analytical frameworks or research results to try to make sense of each other's points of
view.

General Manager: Our dashboard is too heavy. I think we should devote our next meeting to defining
the few 10 to 15 key indicators that could replace the existing ones.

Purchasing Manager: Yes, I agree, as we all know, too much information kills information. It seems to
me that since we regularly discuss our strategy and priorities, we should have no difficulty agreeing on
10 to 15 key indicators.

Production manager: On my side, I need to be sure that there are no problems in the field on the key
elements of performance. I think this is also true for the entire management committee. It seems to
me that 15 indicators are not enough for this.

Sales Director: I don't want to interfere in anything that doesn't concern me, but I think we all have
subordinates to whom we have to delegate. Not all field information should be sent back to us.
Head of strategy: I think it would be good if we could discuss our priorities again. Indeed, I have the
feeling that some aspects of our new strategy are not well implemented at operational levels.

HR manager: And perhaps we need to validate this strategy. I have heard that this requires building a
performance model.

CFO: sure, but the priority remains to be able to report to our shareholders who, as I remind you expect
growth, higher returns and increasing cash flows. It is on these elements that we all have a significant
portion of variable compensation.

General Manager: Most successful companies I know have a BSC. I think we need to implement it. If I
have understood correctly, it is a question of determining the 15 key indicators according to 4
categories.

Quality manager: yes, that's right. I've heard about this method. These 15 indicators represent the key
elements of the strategy. At a conference, I understood that this could be implemented in a few weeks.

Head of strategy: that sounds an excellent option then.

Question 4 (4 points):

In the first class, we discussed Management Control knowledge. One conclusion was that existing
knowledge does not allow proposing solutions that would be empirically tested, but being able to
identify the coherences and incoherencies of systems and help managers pose their control problems
in a relevant way. Can you illustrate this with two examples drawn from the course?