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Issues concerning web-based business reporting: an analysis of the views of interested parties

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>06/2003
<mark>Journal</mark>British Accounting Review
Issue number2
Number of pages33
Pages (from-to)155-187
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Rapid developments in information and communications technology have led organisations in many countries to consider the impact of the Internet on the delivery and dissemination of business information. This paper reports the findings of a UK study into the views of various user groups, preparers and auditors regarding specific proposals for change and newly emerging practices. Over 500 individuals from six groups responded to a questionnaire study, representing an overall response rate of 33%. Views were elicited regarding: (i) the desirability of different kinds of additional information that could be provided electronically, (ii) the usefulness of different navigation and search aids, and (iii) the portability of information under different formats.

It is found that users favour many of the expansions of scope made possible by the web. A range of navigation aids, search aids and file formats are found by all groups to be at least fairly useful, especially global navigation aids. Preferences regarding file formats vary across the groups. Paired group comparisons show that, while expert and non-expert users hold similar views in relation to many issues, users' and preparers' views differ considerably. Auditors' views generally fall in between those of users and preparers. Cyert and Ijiri's (1974) framework is used to rationalise the observed conflicts and congruences of interest, underpinning clear pointers for policy-makers.