Does a Completion Goal Impede Auditors’ Identification of Fraud Risk? The Benefit of a Refuse to Accept Goal and Influence of Professional Identity
45 Pages Posted: 1 Jan 2020
Date Written: December 12, 2019
Auditors’ fraud detection is critical – undetected frauds impose costs on users and auditors. We propose auditors’ fraud risk identification during end-of-audit analytical procedures is affected by working under a completion (“just get it done”) goal versus a “refuse to accept” goal (with a desired conclusion that fraud risks remain). In an experiment, a refuse to accept goal positively affects auditors’ belief task performance is important, prompting integrative processing, then a higher likelihood of identifying a fraud risk. While the refuse to accept goal increases this belief for low professional identity auditors, it does not lead to identifying the specific risk, only raising concerns with their superior. High identity auditors are more likely to identify the specific risk under the goal, but, consistent with experiencing a self-concept threat, do not show increased belief performance is important and are less inclined to raise concerns. Findings have implications for research and practice.
Keywords: Goals, fraud, end-of-audit analytical procedures, audit quality, professional identity, self-concept threat
JEL Classification: M40, M41, M42, D80, D91
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation