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Sustainability Accounting & Accountability

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Questions:

1.Identify five relevant stakeholder groups and discuss how different accounts could be used to satisfy each group’s information requirements.
 
2.You need consider ONE of the most important metrics that could be used for each of the four perspectives of performance and explain the reason why it has been selected and how it can be used to improve company’s performance.
 
3.Provide an explanation to the CEO with reference to the potential costs and benefits of working with both Super Cheap and Green Fashion.
 
4.identifying a total of four possible social and environment impacts. If the impact is detrimental either socially or environmentally, give suggestions to minimize the impact. If the impact is positive, give suggestions as to maximize the benefit.
 
5.You are required to identify an organisation, business or industry and explain whether and how it could potentially increase the value of its shares in the long term by being accountable to its major stakeholders. 
 
 

Answers:

1.Fashion companies have primary stakeholder and secondary stakeholders. The fashion industry has to depend on other parties for the supply of raw materials and suppliers forms an important part of their stakeholder group. Customers, employees, investors and community are other relevant stakeholders group of RTXM clothing company. Each single group in stakeholders requires different information for judging the performance of organization.

Customers forms an integral part of stakeholders and they are mostly concerned about the quality of products. They rely on the area of complains for gaining feedback about the products. The information requirement of customers can be satisfied with the involvement of customer teams that would assist them in gaining with specific and customized requirements about different products and clothes. Suppliers are other important stakeholders who most inform the company about the type and quality of textile manufactured by them. Sometimes, it becomes hard for company to communicate the requirement of fabric quality to the suppliers. It is essential for Fashion Company to properly communicate the fabric quality and raw materials to assist them in shipping the materials (Edwards 2013).

 


Community should be informed about the social responsible work that the organization is engaged with. They require the information about the area in which the company is supporting projects for the wellbeing of society and their betterment. Information such as raising of funds and steps taken by them in maintaining environmental sustainability helps in maintaining reputation and brand image of company. Investors are concerned about the stability and sustainability of company in relation to their competitors. Employees seek the information about the efficacy about human resource department in dealing with their employees, their package, incentives, scope of outsourcing the employees, work life balance (Remy et al. 2016).

2.The balanced scorecard is a framework of strategic management that helps in measuring the performance of organization.  It includes both non-financial and financial metrics for measuring the performance.

Four perspectives are involved in the balanced score card for measuring the performance and this involves customer perspective, financial perspective, internal business perspectives and innovation and learning perspectives. This particular measure is considered better performance indicator compared to using only profit because it integrates both financial and non-financial indicators for assessing the operational process and performance of organization from top to bottom.

 


The financial perspective is of particular interest to investors of RTXM and it depicts the strategy, execution and its improvement at the bottom line improvement. The financial perspective of organization can be measured using the quarterly sales made that would lead to increase in their operating income. Therefore, quarterly sales is one of the important metric for measuring the financial performance, as this would ultimately help in increasing the return on investment and thereafter the market share.

Customer perspective fall in the categories such as quality, price, cost, time, service and performances. Time taken by com ay to deliver the products is measured by the lead-time and defect level of products are measured with the quality measures. RTXM is currently issues such as product quality and their online shopping experience. An important metrics is this regard is the responsive supply and preferred suppliers as it will lead to on time delivery and maintain the requirement of business (Coe and Letza 2014). Perspective of internal business of RTXM can be measured using design productivity. Learning and innovation perspective of organization can be measured using the metric by focusing on products. They should focus on products that comprise of 80% of sales. This is so because it will help in boosting the overall performance of organization.

3.RTXM is required to keep track of its performance by identifying their core objectives. They are required to focus on the quality of products for which new suppliers are required. There are two proposed suppliers that is Green fashion and super cheap. Super cheap is capable of supplying large range of products in short period at competitive price. Looking on the side of corporate social responsibility, the supplier has many serious issues in their supply chain. Environment in which the suppliers operate are polluted due to their own activities and suppliers forms an integral part of company. Such agreement would hamper the image of organization. Another supplier is Green fashion has their sustainability and value agenda similar to the RTXM. Furthermore, they supply products within the reasonable time frame (Bebbington et al. 2014). However, they offer limited range of products at relatively higher price. In addition to this, they have agenda of sustainability that has fashion design in way kind to environment. They source the raw materials for producing the fabrics in ethical manner and promotes the work life balances for their employees. Considering all, the aspects of being sustainable suppliers, it can be said that it would be strategically appropriate for RTXM to select Green fashion as their suppliers. Working with Super Cheap would provide the organization with wide range of products at competitive price and within short time. On other hand, Green fashion are compatible to work with and provides with quality products at relatively higher price compared to Super cheap (Simkin et al. 2014). However, considering other aspects, it would be beneficial for RTXM to select Green fashion as their supplier. Furthermore, their employee friendly environment would be useful to their relevant stakeholders.

 


4.For analysis of life, cycle of a product that is considered is trousers or jeans. RTXM has expanded its product lines for joining with the fast fashion industry. The life cycle of trousers consist if many stages such as production of cotton, production of fabric. Fabric production has several stages such as manufacturing of garment, distribution and transport, recycling and consumer care. The last stage is end of life of product. The life cycle analysis of a product provides with the framework and approach of sustainable fashion design (Smith 2017).

Product life cycle of jeans:

(Source: Hribar et al. 2014)

The first stage is to measure the resources that is taken to manufacture the product that is jeans and then releasing it into the environment during the life cycle. Each of the stages of product life cycle has an impact on environment. Design stage of product is done at the beginning of their life cycle. Innovations in designing new product comes with some environmental challenges. Production of fabric and customer care are the most significant phase for impact of energy and climatic change. The phase of customer care has dominating the climatic change area and this is driven by non-renewable energy usage (Gmelin and Seuring 2014).

Product life cycle of products comes with some of social and environmental challenges. It does not take into account for performing social analysis. Most of data required for carrying out evaluations are not available from organizations. It also has damaging impact on environment such as pollution, safety and health hazards along with impact in water and use of energy. There are some benefits of assessment of life cycle of product as it allows the organization to focus on considerable environmental impacts for evaluation of sustainable policies and programs. RTXM are provided with the suggestions that can help in minimizing the social and environmental impacts. Organization would have informed product decisions affecting materials, design and materiality (Weygandt et al. 2013).   

 


5.Maximizing the value of shares is of utmost important for any organization in order to enable the shareholders to make them reap maximum benefits. Strategies of business should be developed by keeping in mind the interest of investors. An organization can create value or enhance value of their shares by shaping their business strategies aligning with the objectives of shareholders or investors.

David Jones is an organization that has a record of accomplishment over the past five years in relation to shareholders return and financial performance. It has the their largest departmental store of Australia Organization has a solid foundation for future growth on shareholder return irrespective of troughs and peak of economic cycle. It is required by company in their very first instance to follow the principle of maximizing value of shareholders. David Jones can increase the shareholder value by implementing strategic initiatives that will help in generating long-term value and benefits. Organization should try to maximize the expected shareholder return event at the lower near term cost. Some of the key source for delivering value to shareholders is maintaining strong position of balance sheet, growth in dividend paid that is in line with growth in net profit after tax and returning excessive cash to shareholders in an efficient manner. Formulation of strategic plans of organization that will help in generating excess return to shareholders are creation of high value new stores, refurbishing and adoption of stringent disciplines of capital efficiency. Organization should focus on category of high margin products that will continue to provide sustainable improvement of gross profit margin. This will increase the revenue generated and ultimately the returns to shareholders

 

References:

 Bebbington, J., Unerman, J. and O'Dwyer, B. eds., 2014. Sustainability accounting and accountability. Routledge.

Coe, N. and Letza, S., 2014. Two decades of the balanced scorecard: A review of developments. The Poznan University of Economics Review, 14(1), p.63.

Demski, J., 2013. Managerial uses of accounting information. Springer Science & Business Media.

Edwards, J.R., 2013. A History of Financial Accounting (RLE Accounting) (Vol. 29). Routledge.

Fashion Revolution CIC 2015, It’s time for a Fashion Revolution, viewed 21 July 2017,

Gmelin, H. and Seuring, S., 2014. Achieving sustainable new product development by integrating product life-cycle management capabilities. International Journal of Production Economics, 154, pp.166-177.

Hoyle, J.B., Schaefer, T. and Doupnik, T., 2015. Advanced accounting. McGraw Hill.

Hribar, P., Kravet, T. and Wilson, R., 2014. A new measure of accounting quality. Review of Accounting Studies, 19(1), pp.506-538.

Remy, N Speelman, E & Swartz, S 2016, Style that’s sustainable: A new fast-fashion formula, viewed 15 July 2017, <https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/sustainability-andresource-productivity/our-insights/style-thats-sustainable-a-new-fast-fashionformula?cid=sustainability-eml-alt-mip-mck-oth-1610>.

Simkin, M.G., Norman, C.S. and Rose, J.M., 2014. Core concepts of accounting information systems. John Wiley & Sons.

Smith, M., 2017. Research methods in accounting. Sage.

Weil, R.L., Schipper, K. and Francis, J., 2013. Financial accounting: an introduction to concepts, methods and uses. Cengage Learning.

Weygandt, J.J., Kimmel, P.D. and Kieso, D.E., 2015. Financial & Managerial Accounting. John Wiley & Sons.

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