With the advancements in technology and the recent trends in how audit teams communicate, audit firms increasingly develop and rely on computer-mediated communications and online platforms in the conduct of audits. We examine the effects of two different electronic interacting brainstorming platforms, structured (idea inputs organized into trees and shown by categories/ topics) and non-structured (idea inputs in chronological sequence), on audit team brainstorming performance. While the psychology literature suggests potential benefits from the structured brainstorming platforms, we find that, in a fraud hypothesis generation task, a structured brainstorming platform does not improve audit team fraud brainstorming performance (either quantity or quality of fraud hypotheses generated). Further, we find that a structured brainstorming platform reduces the differences in brainstorming performance and mental simulations between managers and seniors. This is because a structured brainstorming platform reduces managers’ performance, although it has no negative effects on seniors’ performance.

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