Setting direction

We have a strong commitment to strategic planning

Lighthouse principle:

(based on ASX Principle 1)

Management and oversight

Lay solid foundations

The Audit Office of New South Wales is a statutory authority established under the Public Finance and Audit Act 1983 conduct audits for the Auditor-General. The Auditor-General is accountable to the NSW Parliament and is responsible for the Audit Office and its activities.

Our strategic plan

Our 2015–16 strategic plan was developed by the Office Executive and the Leadership Team to meet the strategic priorities of the Audit Office.

The four focus areas for 2015–16 were as follows:

The year ahead

Our 2016–19 Strategic Plan incorporates newly defined strategic goal areas that will build on the work achieved in 2015–16:

  • Products
  • Systems and Processes
  • People and Culture
  • Finances.

View full details of our strategic goals, initiatives and targets for 2016–17.

Product delivery

Goal for 2015–16

We have a strong understanding of the public sector to deliver quality products and services that have impact and relevance, and improve client assessment of value for money.



  • Establish and communicate expectations for staff knowledge and understanding of the government reform agenda for relevant clients and industries
  • Align audit processes and reporting to deliver on Auditor-General and stakeholder expectations.

Key achievements include

  • Further refining our financial audit Auditor-General’s Reports by:
    – improving executive and chapter summaries
    – refining the analysis around our findings to better support our recommendations
    – better targeting areas of government focus such as asset and risk management
  • Revising the structure of our performance audit Auditor-General’s Reports and increasing the use of analytical headings to improve readability
  • Redesigning our Professional Update newsletter and key agency reports
  • Inviting key speakers to our staff Office Forums to talk on emerging issues and developments in the public sector
  • Releasing a staff knowledge guide ‘Understanding the NSW public sector’ on our intranet.

Operational Excellence

Goal for 2015–16

We operate in a business-like manner with competitive models for pricing, resourcing and outsourcing. Our structure and skill mix is regularly reviewed, to deliver excellent products in a transparent manner.



  • Develop a workforce plan
  • Cut internal red tape to streamline processes
  • Demonstrate value for money and transparency through the implementation of our pricing model.

Key achievements include

  • Generating efficiencies through:
    – automating review and approval processes for audit reports
    – automation of payment processes such as petty cash
    – streamlining our delegations manual and travel allowance processes
  • Completing work necessary to develop a workforce plan such as:
    – conducting a workforce environmental scan
    – developing a roadmap for planning our resourcing in the longer-term
  • Implementing our financial audit pricing model including:
    – publishing the model on our website, to explain how we set our prices for the work we do
    – applying the model to all our financial audit clients.


Constructive Leadership

Goal for 2015–16

Our leaders are agile and adaptable. They listen and communicate a shared vision and direction, model constructive behaviours and set challenging but realistic goals that are rigorously pursued with enthusiasm.



  • Implement upward feedback for people managers
  • Identify needs and possible solutions for people managers to become more constructive and confident leaders.

Key achievements include

  • Developing and trialling upward feedback models to enable staff to give open and constructive feedback to their managers
  • Launching toolkits and guidelines to explain how upward feedback models work and staff roles in the process
  • Rolling out a mentoring program to help managers become constructive leaders.



Goal for 2015–16

We create a constructive and achievement-oriented environment for our people that requires them to take opportunities to achieve their potential. Our people are flexible and receive regular and honest performance feedback.



  • Operationalise and support new policies and frameworks delivered by Project Blue, our human resources transformation project
  • Identify and support staff in achieving their career goals
  • Develop a plan to address key staff engagement survey gaps.

Key achievements include

  • Implementing our new performance management framework
  • Launching Retain, a new resource scheduling system, that allows managers to schedule staff based on their availability, skill level and preferred work locations
  • Improving communication to staff on the Audit Office’s strategic direction with regular updates at our staff Office Forums and on our intranet
  • Implementing the online learning and recruitment modules of our new Human Capital Management System – MiCareer.