The year ahead

Our activity in 2016-17 will be driven by our corporate plan
strategic plan

Corporate plan

Our activity in 2016–17 will be driven by our corporate plan, which has three levels – our three-year strategic plan, annual branch business plans and staff performance agreements. Each level supports the Audit Office’s vision and mission, and has the same four key result areas and accompanying goals:

Products

Our quality products and services have impact, relevance and value.

Systems and Processes

Our contemporary systems and processes are integrated, efficient and fit for purpose.

People and Culture

Our people are engaged, confident, capable and adaptable, working together in a constructive environment.

Finances

Our financial frameworks are fiscally responsible, future-focused and ensure our sustainability.

Our Leadership Team, made up of the Office Executive and leaders from Financial Audit, Performance Audit and Corporate Services, work together to develop clear goals, strategic initiatives and targets for the Audit Office.

The strategic plan, branch business plans and staff performance agreements include their own set of indicators to measure progress. These indicators connect to create a set of measures that track performance across the Audit Office. Improvement initiatives are also included at all levels – recognising that all levels of the organisation need to contribute to achieving the Audit Office’s vision.

Our Financial Audit, Performance Audit and Corporate Services branches each have a business plan which is aligned to the overall strategic goals of the organisation.

 
 

Key performance indicators

We have a set of key performance indicators that will provide vital feedback on how well we are progressing towards our vision and goals. Our indicators for 2016–17 are:

Products

  • Parliamentarians’ satisfaction with our products and services
  • Clients' satisfaction with our products and services
  • Percentage of parliamentarians that believe our products and services provide valuable information on public sector performance
  • Percentage of parliamentarians that believe we act with integrity
  • Percentage of Auditor-General’s Report recommendations actioned.

Systems and Processes

  • Percentage of financial audit staff available hours charged to audits
  • Performance audit reports tabled per annum
  • Average charge-out rate per hour for our financial audits
  • Percentage of total annual expenditure allocated to corporate support.

People and Culture

  • Employee engagement
  • Measures on:
    – how constructive our culture is
    – the extent and quality of formal and informal performance feedback given to staff
    – how well we understand our audit clients' business
  • Staff turnover.

Finances

  • Expense growth rate
  • Maintain sufficient cash to meet outflows
  • Actual revenue and expenditure versus that budgeted
  • Annual net result percentage of revenue
  • Growth in financial audit revenue from audit fees consistent with the government’s expenditure constraints placed on agencies.

Strategic initiatives

We have set four new strategic initiatives that focus on areas of particular importance to achieving our goals.

Products

Local Government

This initiative is to prepare the Audit Office for a possible expansion of our mandate to include the audit of NSW local government entities. In June 2016, the NSW Government introduced the Local Government Amendment (Governance and Planning) Bill which proposes to appoint the Auditor-General as the auditor of local government entities from 2016–17. The proposed legislation also gives the Auditor-General the power to conduct performance audits in the sector.

In his speech, the Minister for Local Government noted ‘this is a major reform that brings New South Wales into line with most other Australian jurisdictions and New Zealand, and that will provide greater consistency and certainty across the sector’. Parliament debated and passed the Bill in August 2016. Much work has already been done by the Audit Office on understanding the local government reform agenda and working with stakeholders to identify ways to best audit  local government and build our capability should the legislation proceed.

Influencing for Impact

The Audit Office has a strong desire to engage better with all our stakeholders to ensure we deliver audits that are of a high quality and lead to improved public sector reporting and performance. Embedding an open and constructive approach to dealing with all our stakeholders – particularly our audit clients and parliamentarians – and exploring more contemporary and innovative ways of delivering value will be a strong focus of this initiative.

Systems and Processes

Reporting Process

This initiative will implement efficient systems, tools and processes to publish high quality reports that clearly communicate the issues our audits are finding, why they are important and what we are recommending. It will also ensure the reporting process is easier for our staff.

This initiative is fundamentally important to the success of our Influencing for Impact initiative detailed above, as without clear and easily understood findings and recommendations we are unlikely to have the impact we are striving to achieve.

People and Culture

Working Better, Working Together

This initiative is essentially designed to bring the various areas of the Audit Office closer together to achieve better outcomes for our staff, audit clients and parliamentarians. We will do this by exploring ways of bringing our people together across teams and branches to improve:

  • communication and collaboration
  • development opportunities for our staff
  • resourcing and staff engagement.