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The importance of skill and experience in innovation auditing
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Innovation and Product Realisation. (Innovationsledning)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2597-8561
2013 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Innovation auditing is by both academia and practitioners considered to be important for differentpurposes such as increased innovativeness and a multitude of auditing tools and methods exist. Majority of these doto some extent use best practice and most provides explicate judgment criteria why their dependence of theauditors’ skill and experience is relatively low. A literature review was conducted to deepen the understanding ofhow the auditors’ skill and experience is considered in current innovation audit literature. Only a few were found toaddress the issue explicitly but a majority contained examples of situations where skill or experience of the auditoraffected the audit process. Innovation auditing doesn’t only seem to provide a base for increased innovativenessand maturation but also requires auditing maturity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013.
Keywords [en]
Skill and Experience; Innovation; Auditing, Assessment; Measure; Review; Audit-process; Best Practice; Auditing maturity; Assessment maturity
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27153OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-27153DiVA, id: diva2:773887
Conference
The 6th ISPIM Innovation Symposium - Innovation in the Asian Century - Melbourne, Australia
Available from: 2014-12-19 Created: 2014-12-19 Last updated: 2019-12-13Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. INNOVATION AUDITING THE AUDIT & THE AUDITOR: (from the perspective of the internal auditor)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>INNOVATION AUDITING THE AUDIT & THE AUDITOR: (from the perspective of the internal auditor)
2015 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

There are many innovation audits that aim to contribute to increased innovativeness through systematic monitoring and review. In line with this the purpose of this study is to build knowledge that increases both the academic and the practical user-value of innovation audits.

Previous research in the innovation audit area is mainly focused on the audit tool and to some extent the auditing process, with a strong bias towards what to audit, rarely addressing more than just the measuring- and assessment phases. Most audits involve internal staff in audit-related work such as self-assessments, and thus employees from the audited organisation can also be regarded as internal auditors (executors). Previous research indicates that the ability of the internal auditor impacts the audit’s execution and that the audit design affects how auditor-demanding the execution of the audit becomes. Despite this there is very little research that concerns the internal auditor’s role in the auditing process.

To better understand how the abilities of individual internal auditors affect the audit process, I formulated two questions for the licentiate thesis: What types of shortcomings in the audit process are influenced by deficient auditor maturity? and What are the consequences of these shortcomings on the audit process? The concept of auditor maturity is here used familiarly to describe the internal auditors’ level of ability to independently perform their auditing tasks in an appropriate manner without any further support than what is provided by the audit tool.

The empirical data were collected in two qualitative case studies with 21 participants from two SMEs. 92 written questionnaire and 23 interviews were conducted and complemented by a literature review. My use of two subdivisions of the audit process is central to the thesis and to my knowledge not previously used: firstly the division into three phases: the pre-assessment phase, the assessment phase and the post-assessment phase, and secondly the division into three parts: the audit (the tool), the auditor (the executor) and the auditing (the execution). The analytical focus is on shortcomings in the internal auditors’ ability to execute their auditing tasks.

Several shortcomings in this respect were identified and can be grouped based on the following characteristics: Conceptual, Contextual, Auditor interaction, Strategic & operational and Adaption.

The main contribution of this research is by highlighting the internal auditor’s role in the audit process, to discuss all the phases of the process and to introduce the perspectives of audit, auditor and auditing under the unifying concept of the audit process.

Abstract [en]

Det finns många innovations-audits som syftar till ökad innovativitet genom systematisk mätning och granskning. I linje med det är den här studiens syfte att bygga kunskap som ökar både den akademiska och den praktiska användarnyttan av innovations-audits.

Det finns mycket tidigare forskning inom området innovations-auditering med en stark övervikt mot vad som ska auditeras och berör ofta inte mer än själva mät- och skattnings-fasen. De flesta audits involverar i hög grad intern personal i det audit-relaterade arbetet med att t.ex. utföra självskattningar och förändringsplanering. Det innebär att personal från den auditerade organisationen kan betraktas som interna auditors. I tidigare forskning finns tydliga tecken på att den interna auditorns (utföraren) förmåga påverkar auditerings-arbetet och att auditens utformning påverkar hur krävande auditerings-utförandet blir för auditorn. Trots detta berör ytterst lite forskning den interna auditorns roll i audit-processen.

För att bättre förstå hur enskilda interna auditors förmågor påverkar audit-processen formulerade jag två frågor i lic-avhandlingen: Vilka typer av tillkortakommanden i audit-processen påverkas av otillräcklig auditor-mognad? och Vilka följder får dessa tillkortakommanden på audit-processen? Begreppet auditor-mognad används här på ett vardagligt sätt för att beskriva nivån av den interna auditorns förmåga att självständigt utföra sina auditeringsuppgifter på ett ändamålsenligt sätt - utan att behöva ytterligare stöd än det som ges i audit-verktyget.

Empiri har samlats in i två kvalitativa case-studier med totalt 21 deltagare från två SME företag. 92 skriftliga enkäter och 23 intervjuer har genomförts och kompletterats med en litteraturstudie. Centralt för avhandlingen är mitt val att använda två uppdelningar av audit-processen som vad jag vet inte använts tidigare. Den första delar auditeringen i tre faser; för-mätningsfasen, mätfasen och efter-mätningsfasen. Den andra delar processen i tre delar: auditen som är verktyget, auditorn är genomföraren och auditeringen är utförandeprocessen. Analys fokus är tillkortakommanden i den interna auditorns förmåga att genomföra sina audit-uppgifter.

Ett flertal tillkortakommanden i auditorns förmåga att utföra sina audit uppgifter identifierades och kan grupperas utifrån följande karaktärsdrag; Konceptuella, Kontextuella, Auditor interaktion, Strategisk och operationell samt Anpassning.

Forskningens främsta akademiska och praktiska bidrag är att lyfta och tydliggöra den interna auditerns roll i audit-processen, att modellera och diskutera processens samtliga faser samt att föra in de tre perspektiven audit, auditor och auditing under det sammanhållande begreppet audit-process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västerås: Mälardalen University, 2015
Series
Mälardalen University Press Licentiate Theses, ISSN 1651-9256 ; 191
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27146 (URN)978-91-7485-181-6 (ISBN)
Presentation
2014-03-09, room Filen, Mälardalens högskola, Eskilstuna, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-12-19 Created: 2014-12-19 Last updated: 2015-11-16Bibliographically approved
2. Exploring Purposeful use of Innovation Self-assessments
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring Purposeful use of Innovation Self-assessments
2020 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Innovation management is a multidimensional practice characterized by the requirement of a constant renewal to maintain an organization’s relative innovativeness. A practice highly characterized by a requirement to handle uncertainty, risk, and long lead times, which requires an active management of both the prerequisites of today and a yet-undefined future. Therefore, it is of little surprise that the so-called “innovation audits,” with their purpose of direct or indirect improvement are often considered a vital part of innovation management practices. This thesis focuses on the internal self-assessment use of such audits by organizations to self-assess their current state of innovativeness against indicators of good practice or their own prior state. The purpose of such innovation audits is to reveal gaps between the current and desired state, which the organization can use to develop improvement activities.

Substantial empirical and theoretical research on innovation audits exists, which focuses primarily on the development of the audit itself, but seldom on enacting audits that lead to desired improvements. Much innovation audit research discusses the areas to assess and the development of different types of indicators, statements, and framework, which represents these assessment areas. The problem is that no matter how well the indicators identify possible improvement areas or gaps between current and desired states, it still says very little about integrating retrieved information into activities that actually lead to the desired improvements.

This thesis takes a process perspective on the undertaking of an innovation self-assessment audit (ISA). Rather than examining what to assess and how to use the result, it focuses on the undertaking of an ISA as an improvement process in itself. The overall objective is to contribute to the understanding of why a purposeful use of ISA emerges (or does not emerge). To this end, this thesis collects empirical data about ISA use and its context from qualitative case studies, involving 14 self-assessment groups from 9 different organizations. The findings from these studies is presented in the six appended papers that address different perspectives on ISA use and contextual prerequisites.

To better understand why a purposeful use of ISA emerges (or does not), it was necessary to bring the appended papers together and undertake a more focused discussion on ISA use as a process in its entirety. Therefore, this thesis recontextualizes the six appended papers against a new theoretical framework based on theories on processes, complex adaptive systems (CAS), and competence-in-use.

The theoretical discussion in this thesis offers several contributions. First, by approaching the undertaking of ISA as an improvement process, it focuses on the continuity of the process, which in turn allows a distinction between the execution of the process and the enabling of this execution. Second, the enactment of purposeful use is related to knowledge about the focus area of the assessment (e.g. innovation culture or capabilities) and the current state being assessed. Together, these create the basis for the theorization of a four-dimensional ISA competence-in-use that impacts how ISA can be purposefully enacted. Overall, the main reason why purposeful use emerges (or does not) does not seem to be so much about having a high ISA competence-in-use, as having high correspondence between expectations and competence-in-use.

Together, this contributes to an increased understanding of why purposeful use emerges (or does not), making this its primary contribution within the field of innovation management. The focus on self-assessment use as an improvement process embedded in the organizational context it intends to improve, does give a more general relevance to the discussion on improvement processes, and the use of self-assessment audits outside the field of innovation management.

The contribution of this thesis is closely related to the use of ISA and can be used to support the process of planning and undertaking an ISA. This thesis also contributes to knowledge on ISA competence-in-use, which can guide practical choices in undertaking an ISA for more purposeful use.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Eskilstuna: Mälardalen University, 2020
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 305
National Category
Economics and Business
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-46325 (URN)978-91-7485-454-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2020-02-13, Filen, Mälardalens högskola, Eskilstuna, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2019-12-17 Created: 2019-12-13 Last updated: 2020-01-13Bibliographically approved

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