The Feasibility and Utility of Human Resource Accounting

by Geoffrey Baker



The article focuses on the feasibility and utility of human resources accounting. Accountants have attracted much criticism for omitting any valuation of human capital in balance sheets. At times critic's views may be taken to attribute, not only misleading omissions, but also misanthropy to the accounting profession, involving disastrous effects on employee commitment. The aim of information services in general and of accounting in particular, has therefore been to present models to minimize these difficulties. The models are necessarily and designedly incomplete portrayals of reality. They seek to present, in a readily digestible form, only data relevant and appropriately weighted, to a particular class of decision-makers' needs. To this end, there have evolved a, number of accounting practices and techniques, appropriate to a particular model presentation. However, as regards both the models and the practices underlying them, the specificity to a particular purpose and the inappropriateness to other purposes may easily be overlooked. Growing sophistication of business information requirements enhances the need to consider the appropriatenes of the basis of presentation.

California Management Review

Berkeley-Haas's Premier Management Journal

Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

Learn more
Follow Us