The Competitive Advantage of Audit Support Systems: The Relationship between Extent of Structure and Audit Pricing

Posted: 27 Sep 2012

See all articles by Elizabeth Carson

Elizabeth Carson

University of New South Wales

Carlin Dowling

University of Melbourne

Date Written: May 1, 2012

Abstract

This study investigates if different audit support system designs provide firms with competitive advantages when competing in the market for audit services. We examine the association between the extent of structure a system imposes on the audit process and audit pricing. We find that audit firms with systems that impose more structure on the audit process compete as lower-cost producers in industries that suit a structured audit approach. However, when these audit firms are also national industry specialists, they retain a fee premium. This study provides evidence that audit support system design is associated with economic consequences for audit firms and clients. We include suggestions for future research.

Keywords: Audit Support Systems, Audit Fees, Audit Structure, Competitive Advantage

JEL Classification: M42, M15

Suggested Citation

Carson, Elizabeth and Dowling, Carlin, The Competitive Advantage of Audit Support Systems: The Relationship between Extent of Structure and Audit Pricing (May 1, 2012). Journal of Information Systems, Vol. 26, No. 1, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2153273

Elizabeth Carson

University of New South Wales ( email )

Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia
+612 9385 5822 (Phone)
+612 9385 5925 (Fax)

Carlin Dowling (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne ( email )

Victoria
Australia

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