27 September 2023

Bureau audit: Fine with some clouds

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A performance audit of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s delivery of extreme weather services has found it to be fine and settled but could do better.

In his report The Bureau of Meteorology’s Delivery of Extreme Weather Services, Auditor-General, Grant Hehir found the Bureau’s processes for delivering extreme weather services to be “largely effective” but “improvement is required in the efficacy of controls to reduce residual risk”.

He noted that the Bureau’s provision of extreme weather services was an integral part of its ongoing operational activities.

“The Bureau has established largely effective processes to support its delivery of extreme weather services,” Mr Hehir said.

“Appropriate planning and governance structures have been implemented to underpin extreme weather services,” he said.

“Planning processes, including extensive stakeholder engagement activities, support the implementation of the Bureau’s corporate strategy.”

He said planning for changes to the delivery of aviation and associated services was being appropriately coordinated and managed.

“The Bureau’s design of new policies and governance frameworks for risk management and resilience planning is appropriate. However, improvement is required in the efficacy of controls to reduce residual risk,” Mr Hehir said.

“The bureau’s operational processes and activities, including its management of resources, have allowed it to prepare for and respond effectively to extreme weather events.”

He recommended the Bureau develop a nationally consistent approach to govern the recording of decisions and judgements and that it expand performance reporting to include information about the accuracy and timeliness of forecasts and warnings for extreme weather services. The Bureau agreed.

The Auditor-General’s 63-page report can be accessed at this PS News link and the audit team was Judy Lachele, Joshua Francis, Kate Wilson and Paul Bryant.

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