Christine Weigel, Martin Hiebl,
"Accountants and small businesses: toward a resource-based view"
, in Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, Vol. in Druck, Emerald Group Publishing, 2022, ISSN: 1832-5912
Accountants and small businesses: toward a resource-based view
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Purpose: Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) carry huge economic importance worldwide. At the same time, SMEs face specific challenges, some of which may be alleviated by employing accountants. However, research on the role and impact of accountants in SMEs has long remained fragmented and scarce. This paper aims to encourage more research on accountants in SMEs by providing the first comprehensive and systematic review of relevant research. Design/methodology/approach: Based on systematic review methods, the authors critically examine 68 research articles dealing with accountants in SMEs. Findings: The review identifies three dominant roles for accountants in SMEs: providers of reporting services, sources of SME owners? self-validation and translators between capital providers and SMEs and advisors. Implicitly, many studies assume a value-enhancing effect of employing accountants in SMEs regardless of these specific roles. At the same time, available studies seldom make use of existing theoretical frameworks to more closely analyze the value-enhancing potential of human resources such as accountants. The authors, thus, propose the resource-based view as a robust theoretical framework to improve theory building in research on accountants in SMEs. Originality/value: To the best of the authors? knowledge, this paper is the first systematic review of accountants in SMEs. In addition, the authors develop a resource-based model on accountants in SMEs to guide future research on this topic.