Original Research

A generic balanced scorecard for small and medium manufacturing enterprises in South Africa

Arthur Reynolds, Houdini Fourie, Lourens Erasmus
The Southern African Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management | Vol 11, No 1 | a193 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajesbm.v11i1.193 | © 2019 Arthur Reynolds, Houdini Fourie, Lourens Erasmus | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 22 May 2018 | Published: 23 January 2019

About the author(s)

Arthur Reynolds, School of Accounting, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa
Houdini Fourie, School of Accounting, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa
Lourens Erasmus, Department of Financial Governance, University of South Africa, South Africa


Background: Prior research confirmed that the balanced scorecard (BSC) can be used successfully at manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to assist with sustainability. South African SMEs have a low survival rate despite being a significant contributor to the local economy with the manufacturing sector in particular hampered by negative growth.

Aim: The objective of this study was to develop a BSC for manufacturing SMEs in South Africa with measurable key performance indicators (KPIs).

Setting: We conducted a Delphi study with cost accounting specialists in different industries.

Methods: The development of the generic BSC was facilitated with a Delphi survey and analytical hierarchy process (AHP).

Results: The research presents a generic yet flexible BSC for manufacturing SMEs. A total number of 12 generic and 104 specific KPIs were identified. The results revealed a greater emphasis on the financial and customer perspectives that may be conducive to SME sustainability and success.

Conclusion: A generic BSC that can be adapted to specific organisational and industry requirements has the potential to enhance SME sustainability and success.


Small and medium enterprises (SME); Balanced scorecard (BSC); Delphi study; Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP)


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Crossref Citations

1. Modelling key predictors that stimulate the entrepreneurial performance of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and poverty reduction: Perspectives from SME managers in an emerging economy
Eugine T. Maziriri, Abigail Chivandi
Acta Commercii  vol: 20  issue: 1  year: 2020  
doi: 10.4102/ac.v20i1.773