For many years, the auditing industry has exhibited a high employee turnover which causes losses in form of recruitment costs and temporary decline in financial turnover. Previous research has explored why auditors leave the organization regardless of whether the auditors have left the organization for another auditing firm, another industry or have completely left the working life.
The purpose of the thesis is to explore the process connected to an auditor’s firm switch, which includes both the reasons for the switch and the experiences of the switch. Accordingly, the research question of the thesis is: Why do auditors switch firm and how do they experience the process? The theoretical contribution of the thesis is a deeper understanding of why auditors choose to switch firms. It also indicates how a firm switch can affect the auditors’ socialization and professional identity. Another contribution is knowledge of how a firm switch can affect and be affected by the relationship between the auditor and the client.
The thesis consists of two parts. The first part, which treats why auditors switch firm, is being explored with help from turnover literature that concerns the auditing industry and organization theories. The second part of the thesis, which aims to explore auditors emotional experience connected to the firm switch, is partly inductive. Socialization theory and literature concerning professional identity and client relations have been used as a starting point. A qualitative data collection, with interviews, has been used to explore these aspects.
The conclusions of the thesis are that the reason for auditors to switch firms can be to achieve the variety that a firm switch provides. Other auditors are looking for or want to avoid some firm specific traits. The experiences of the firm switch differs depending of what type of firm the auditors leaves and enters. The auditors also experience the firm switch process differently. There is an even stronger differentiation in experiences between the auditors that have switched between Big 4 and Non-Big 4 firms and the ones that have switched to the same type of firm that they previously worked at.
|Date of Award||2017-Jul-03|
|Supervisor||Nellie Gertsson (Supervisor) & Sven-Olof Yrjö Collin (Examiner)|
- Degree of Bachelor of Science in Business and Economics
Courses and Subjects
- Accounting and auditing
- 15 HE credits
Swedish Standard Keywords
- Business Administration (50202)
- auditing firm switch
- organizational commitment
- organizational culture
- big 4
- non-big 4