26 September 2023

Auditor-general unveils 2021-22 targets

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The Auditor-General has published his Annual Audit Work Program for 2021-22, covering what the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) sees as the current and emerging risks and challenges impacting public administration.

Auditor-General, Grant Hehir said the Program was designed to reflect the ANAO’s audit strategy and inform the Parliament, Government entities and the public of the planned audit coverage.

“In addition to the annual program of mandated financial statements audits, the Annual Audit Work Program 2021–22 includes 76 potential performance audit and assurance review topics; details about in-progress performance audit and assurance work, and information on a pilot program of audits of annual performance statements,” Mr Hehir said.

He said that COVID-19 had significantly impacted the risk environment faced by the Australian public sector and had challenged policy design, service delivery, IT systems and information management, and resource allocation.

“A key theme cutting across portfolios and areas of Government activity continues to be developing a culture that supports effective compliance with mandatory rules and good practice,” Mr Hehir said.

“A major example is the protection and use of data through effective information and communications technology (ICT) and cyber resilience arrangements.”

He said in the development of the program, 15 audit priorities were identified, five new potential audit topics were suggested and 39 entities were consulted with 29 responses.

Mr Hehir said some of the audits planned for the coming year included:

Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment: Commonwealth development of the National Waste Policy Action Plan;

Attorney-General’s Department: Comcare’s administration of its workers compensation scheme;

Australian Taxation Office: Effectiveness of the management of non-ongoing staff;

Cross-entity: Australian Public Service management of staff leave; effectiveness of the management of non-ongoing staff;

Department of Defence: Contract administration in Defence; Australian industry capability;

Department of Education, Skills and Employment: Access and participation; regional and remote students;

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade: COVID-19 – Consumer Travel Support Program;

Department of Health: Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission; and

Department of Home Affairs: Coordination of border intelligence; Coordination of counter-terrorism arrangements.

The Auditor-General’s full program can be accessed at this PS News link.

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