Impact of accounting process characteristics on accounting outsourcing: Comparison of users and non-users of cloud-based accounting information systems

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Research units

  • Aston University
  • Naval Postgraduate School
  • University of Jyväskylä


Prior literature informs us that a company's decision to outsource a business process depends on process characteristics such as how frequently the process is performed or how specific the assets required by the process are. In this article, we compare the effects of accounting process characteristics on outsourcing decisions across users of traditional and cloud-based accounting information systems (AIS). By focusing on outsourcing of accounting processes among small and medium sized enterprises, we investigate the effect of five business process characteristics (frequency, human asset specificity, uncertainty, information intensity, and need for customer contact) on the outsourcing decision. Our results reveal that process frequency has a weaker negative effect on the outsourcing decision among users of cloud-based AIS. This appears to contribute to users of cloud-based AIS outsourcing a larger variety of accounting processes. Compared to traditional AIS, the inherent properties of cloud-based AIS such as ubiquitous access, scalability, and integration seem to encourage users of cloud-based AIS to also outsource processes that are frequently performed.


Original languageEnglish
Article number100419
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Accounting Information Systems
Early online date18 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Accounting, Cloud-based accounting information systems, Outsourcing, Small and medium-sized enterprises, Transaction cost economics

ID: 36101455