Audits optimize government function by evaluating the legitimacy, economy, efficiency, and effectiveness of how administrative branches utilize resources. For example, audit authorities have revealed that the Taiwan government previously constructed so-called “mosquito buildings” (idle buildings “used only by mosquitoes”) to create an illusion of public construction achievement and opportunities for kickbacks. Such construction squandered and unevenly distributed government funds. The number of mosquito buildings reached of 163, but an effective auditing has reduced this figure to nine. Auditing reports can effectively provide opinion and suggestions to further improve the performance of the executive branches. The key to quality auditing is to review policies from an international perspective so as to provide insight, predictions, and warnings for comparison. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between self-efficacy, intrinsic motivation, organization culture, and mission performance. The ordinary least squares (OLS) to perform multiple regression analysis has been utilized to calculate the coefficient estimates. Self-efficacy (β = 0.327, p < .001) is found to have been influenced by Organization culture, and thus supporting H1 as described in (Fig. 2). As predicted in H2, self-efficacy has influenced intrinsic motivation (β = 0.473, p < .001). The self-efficacy of employees is adjusted on the basis of intrinsic motivation and their organization culture. Intrinsic motivation and mission performance have been found to have been influenced by organization culture (β = 0.448, 0.398, p < .001), and thus supporting H3 and H5. Finally, mission performance has been found to have been influenced by self-efficacy (β = 0.756, p < .001), and thus supporting H4. Self-efficacy and mission performance have found to have a positive correlation. High self-efficacy typically leads to higher performance, and self-efficacy has immense effects on an individual’s motivation, effort, persistence and performance. Therefore, self-efficacy is one big key factor in achieving success.
We have found that auditors generally have a positive attitude toward their professional abilities and experience, confirming the view that experience can increase self-efficacy. Self-efficacy obviously depends on past successful experiences, also known as mastery experiences (Bandura 1986). More importantly, achievements foster self-efficacy only when individuals ascribe these successes to their own personal effort or ability (Tolli and Schmidt 2008). In the “intrinsic motivation” section of the survey, “My work provides opportunities to learn new knowledge” (3.94) has exhibited the most agreement. The results have revealed that most of the respondents have believed that numerous opportunities are available for personal growth within their organizations, probably because of the diverse jobs available in auditing. This is because auditors are routinely assigned tasks that vary in complexity and industry. Job enrichment provides a sense of control over one’s work environment and motivates people to exercise their full potential, thus presenting more opportunities for employee success. However, in the “organization culture” section, “My organization has adequate knowledge resources” (3.31) has lower score. The respondents have perceived that audit authorities have not provided adequate knowledge resources. Audit authorities must create, integrate, share, and use knowledge regarding their clients’ control activities and corporate governance. Implementing these knowledge-based activities effectively is increasingly critical for audit authorities in maintaining their competitive advantages, including gaining tangible benefits regarding time and cost reductions. Thus, sharing knowledge can aid audit authorities in leveraging the skills, knowledge, and optimal practices of their professional staff members. Auditors must share knowledge and expertise in industry-specific trends with members of the audit team as well as their accounting, auditing, and regulatory concerns that may influence the performance and outcome of an audit.
In the specific case of audit engagements, members of an audit team typically perform only a discrete part of the audit process. Thus, the knowledge and expertise in the client environment, industry, and interactions with the client’s operations are unevenly distributed among members of the audit team. In the “mission performance” section, “I am sensitive to the development of new technology and know how to apply it in my work” (3.36) has lower score. Auditors have been found to be less confident in remaining abreast of technological developments, thus indicating that audit methodologies, work procedures, and communication with clients could be improved further. Working in a diversified environment, auditors must be administrative and management experts as well as internal-control designers for (a) adhering to audit principles and learning advanced auditing methods, (b) nurturing a sense of innovation for developing novel audit processes and methods, and (c) creating new audit-operating mechanisms. Appropriate use of IT assets can result in organizational innovations and facilitate redesigning business processes, while favorable competitive dynamics can generate improvements in organizational performance. Efficient and effective auditors are required to have continual education and training in mentoring and knowledge sharing. An audit quality reflects a carefully designed audit process that involves recruiting talented auditors to be properly motivated and trained, thus enabling them to understand inherent uncertainties and adjust audit strategies to accommodate unique client conditions. Therefore, increasing the value of the audit profession in a complex audit environment necessitates constantly adapting to new types of technology and updating auditing concepts.
We have discovered that the experience effect is significant in auditing. Their abundant practical auditing experience and excellent performance history have enabled them to understand the profession and culture more in depth, and to advance professional development programs that inspire learning, stimulate knowledge sharing, and promote self-realization. Auditing experience and professionalization have been found to have positive influence on professional awareness, which, in addition to an auditor’s knowledge and skillset, can no doubt improve professional judgment.
The results of a post hoc analysis on age revealed that older auditors have advantages in perceived ability (the auditors in the age group 30 years or younger) presented significantly lower results than others. Moreover, auditors who have more years of experience have higher perceived ability, confidence and persistence, mission outcome, and job objectives. Shrivastava and Purang (2011) indicate that feedback is effective in the presence of a strong link between performance improvement and valued outcomes. Experienced baby boomers are rapidly nearing retirement age, and their accumulated wisdom and expertise could soon be inaccessible. Brown and Duguid (2000) found that the loss of professional autonomy associated with structured audit approaches has increased the turnover rate among senior audit staff members and, by extension, resulted in the loss of knowledge possessed by exiting personnel. Leaders should create an open culture that is conducive to mentoring, where people learn from one another through a wide variety of formal and informal relationships at an enterprise level. Thus, everyone can reap the benefits of mentoring. Specifically, mentoring others or sharing knowledge can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of audit procedures.
In the “self-efficacy” section of the survey, “I am confident in handling my work” (3.48) and “I can easily stick to and achieve goals” (3.10) were scored lower. Accordingly, the proposed methods for increasing the self-efficacy of auditors has included the following: (a) successful experience from past assignments; (b) self-confidence in one’s potential for achieving goals; and (c) understanding that a performance audit is not a difficult task, but a favorable success model. Therefore, audit tasks should be rotated among staff members for enabling effective cross-training. In this manner, staff members would become more versatile and strengthened by learning from one another, and auditors’ self-efficacy could thus be increased for maintaining high audit sensitivity. Assessments that are more insightful could be performed to recommend alternatives that are more efficient and economical for executive branches to further increase government performance.
Because of the rapid development of science and technology, better performance audits are now being associated with numerous fields, such as the policy sciences. Perceived ability arguably exerts the most significantly positive impact on audit performance, followed by problem-solving skills, resource sharing, and confidence and persistence. Thus, training multidisciplinary auditors is considered as an urgent task. A competent auditor is an expert on audit theory and has expertise in combining technological, managerial, and other relevant information on technology concepts to design a more efficient work process, thereby reducing workloads and allowing more time for training.
The auditing process usually concludes with a report, which is a compilation of reports from each member of the field task unit. Thus, teamwork affects the quality of audit reporting and requires team leaders to guide every member. Leaders should recognize that developing cooperative relationships among team members can promote team effectiveness. For example, group responsibility for completing challenging tasks, as well as team recognition, can help members’ commitment to do cooperative goals (Chen and Tjosvold 2014). By developing a strong, organized environment, every individual would devote more effort to their work, leading to higher self-efficacy. Therefore, teamwork has been proven to be a significant factor affecting the quality of an audit report. In contrast, an effective audit recommendation should be based on evidence that practically resolves issues in accordance with regulations. When they lack on-the-job training, auditors are incapable of issuing a fair judgment and thus fail to deliver a report, which would adversely reflect on how to effectively use a budget. Performance management can be improved by developing visionary thinking and providing constructive recommendations in an audit report. An audit report can provide information and useful references for further improving the performance of executive branches, thus preventing redundant “mosquito” museums, harbors, and facilities from being built.
To improve communication among audited units, audit authorities should understand that reprimanding people or challenging policies is not the main purpose of a performance audit. Auditors should focus on the outcomes of a policy to obtain insightful results and recommendations for governing without interfering with the executive branches. Therefore, audit authorities can positively affect society by increasing the economic value of audited units. Because the main aim of a performance audit is to improve government performance, audit authorities should strive to develop collaborative partnerships with the executive and legislative branches in enhancing governance. Audit leaders should recognize that developing cooperative goals among team members is essential for reinforcing these values and ensuring the credibility. Our study has showed that the evaluation, performance, and value of outputs and outcomes have evidently relied on auditors’ self-efficacy. Auditors should maintain a strong and professional relationship with audited units, enabling them to appropriately communicate audit results, thereby effectively improving governing performance. According to the mission statement of the American Accounting Association, the auditing profession should “foster excellence in the teaching, research, and practice of auditing and assurance services.” Accordingly, the core competencies of auditors are as follows: (a) communication ability and leadership for inspiring people to achieve common goals; (b) the ability to conduct comprehensive financial analyses, provide insight, and offer constructive recommendations; and (c) an awareness of new technological trends and the ability to apply advanced technology to increase client and employee value. Audit authorities should operate on the basis of public governance perspectives and focus on regulatory and performance auditing to ensure that the executive branches utilizes the allocated funds legally, enabling it to economically and efficiently achieve the set goals.