An assessment of the relationship between audit quality characteristics and client satisfaction perceptions in government parastatals in Kenya
Kamuruchi, Reuben Migwi
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The study sought to assess whether there was a relationship between audit quality characteristics and client satisfaction perceptions in Government parastatals in Kenya. The study targeted all the 94 Government parastatals in Kenya audited by private auditors with the target respondents being the chief finance officers or their equivalents of these parastatals. The audit quality characteristics studied were; auditor technical competence, auditor independence and auditor responsiveness to client needs. The study found that there is a strong positive association (r = 0.73) between auditor independence and client satisfaction. The study also found that there is a moderate positive association (r = 0.50) between auditor responsiveness to client needs and client satisfaction. However, the study found that there was a weak positive association (r = 0.34) between auditor technical competence and client satisfaction. The study also found out that government parastatals in Kenya were satisfied with the overall audit. The study also found a very strong positive association (r = 0.90) between auditor independence and technical competence while association between auditor independence and responsiveness to client needs was strong and positive (r = 0.61). However, association between responsiveness to clients’ needs and technical competence was found to be weak (r = 0.39). In addition, the chief finance officers or their equivalents in the government parastatals in Kenya gave other suggestions for enhancing satisfaction in their organizations. The most common suggestions were that: the auditors need to provide other non-audit services and give value added suggestions, auditors need training on Public Sector Accounting and Auditing Standards and Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions for uniformity in the sector, and that the audit to be carried out directly by the Auditor-General. The study recommends that auditors appraise themselves with public sector audit standards to enhance their competencies, avoid relationships that would impair their independence and offer unsolicited advisory services to enhance their responsiveness.