The future of audit: market view – myths, realities and ways forward

The audit profession faces a decisive moment: market expectations are shifting, technology is empowering auditors and strengthening quality, the case for audit’s evolution is growing and a series of headline corporate failures have raised questions about the quality of service companies can expect.

Against this backdrop, Mazars commissioned an independent research firm to take the pulse of the global market’s view on the expectations and future direction of audit, inviting stakeholders to consider necessary changes for its evolution. 

This recent survey reveals the need for an evolution of audit and clearer guidelines on the scope and means of audit. With 501 responses from 12 countries, this survey sheds critical light on what respondents expect from audit. It highlights six ‘standout findings’, including: the perceived mission of auditors and the expected benefits of a company audit; the value of technology to the auditing process; the most critical skills auditors are expected to bring; how broader audit services would be welcome; and, last but not least, the attitudes and appetites towards rotation and audit reform.

The findings provide insight on four market ‘myths’ surrounding what audit can be expected to achieve, how it is delivered, what areas auditors should cover, and the real appetite for joint audit. 

Dispelling four market myths about audit:

  • Myth 1: The primary objective of audit is fraud detection
  • Myth 2: The future of audit is robotic
  • Myth 3: Auditors should stick to traditional financials
  • Myth 4: Companies do not want joint audit  

Download ‘The future of audit: market view – myths, realities and ways forward’ below

As well as dispelling four myths about audit, the report addresses three important questions to policymakers surrounding audit’s evolution, the broadening of audit services and how to foster the right skillsets. Later in the report, findings are broken down according to region, organisation type and job profile.

Combining the best of people with the best of technology

On technology and its role in empowering auditors, Florence Sardas, Partner, Mazars, says: “Technology is a means to an end and the challenge is to fully leverage it to reinvent the audit experience for both our clients and our teams. Before, unleashing the power of auditors meant equipping them with new solutions. But now, what matters is changing the DNA of auditors so that we develop their technological appetite and combine it with their human skills and technical expertise. To do that, training is only one part of the solution. We have to deploy a wider approach of open innovation and new HR models that retain and develop the ‘slasher’ generations (a new cohort of workers that have two or three jobs), while meeting their expectations for job diversity and learning.”

Improving the relevance and quality of audit

Audit is, and always has been, at the heart of what we do. That’s why we are committed to finding ways to strengthen our profession and work with others to evolve our industry.

Download the report to find the market view on:

  • What companies expect an audit to deliver
  • The global appetite for reform and joint audit
  • Companies wanting auditors to extend their range of services beyond financial audits
  • The attributes of a good auditor
  • How technology  empowers auditors’ skills and not replace them
  • And more.


The future of audit: market view