The year ahead

Our activity in 2018–19 will be driven by our Corporate Plan.

Corporate planning framework

Our activity in 2018–19 will be driven by our corporate planning framework comprised of:

  • Corporate Plan 2017–2020
  • Future State Roadmap
  • branch business plans
  • individual staff performance agreements.

Together, these plans support the Audit Office to achieve its vision: Our insights inform and challenge government to improve outcomes for citizens.

Strategic initiatives

Six strategic initiatives are focussed on building the organisational capabilities needed to achieve our vision. All the activities in these initiatives are included in what we call our Future State Roadmap.

Local Government

The Local Government Amendment (Governance and Planning) Act 2016 appointed the Auditor-General as the auditor of local government entities from 2016–17.

In 2017–18, we completed 139 financial audits of local and county councils which we reported in our inaugural Report on Local Government 2017, and three performance audits. Reviewing lessons learnt from these audits, we will continue to improve the delivery of high quality audit services to the local government sector. A key focus in 2018–19 will be finalising and implementing a Commissioning Strategy. This strategy will inform how we engage with the market when procuring and managing our external audit service partners.

Influencing for Impact

The Audit Office has a strong desire to engage effectively with all our stakeholders to ensure we deliver audits that are of a high quality and lead to improved public sector reporting and performance.

Our immediate focus over the 2018–19 year will include developing a Stakeholder Engagement Strategy and delivering a new, upgraded and more functional website.

Reporting Process

In this initiative we are building streamlined, efficient processes that support the production of clear, concise and insightful reports. During the 2017–18 year, significant enhancements were made both to the reporting process and the format of our reports.

Building on work to date, in 2018–19 we will review and respond to external stakeholder feedback on the new format of our reports and continue to improve the reporting process. As part of this work, we will begin work to identify a suitable software solution to support a more streamlined and collaborative authoring and review process.

Working Better, Working Together

This initiative is focused on defining what our work will look like in the future, the capabilities we will need, and the culture and conditions we will need to create.

A key focus for 2018–19 is creating a new, modern office space that enables collaboration, integration and more agile ways of working. Our Future Workplace Project will be our largest and most significant project for the year ahead.

We will also develop a future-focused Workforce Strategy that ensures we have the right people in the right jobs at the right time.

Another key area for this initiative will be the implementation of a Leadership Framework, and the continued implementation of our Diversity Framework. This will also continue our work to ensure our people work in an environment of diversity and empowerment, supported by clear and focused leadership.

Data Analytics

We live in a digital world and the mass of data now available to governments present opportunities to deliver better services more efficiently and economically. This initiative seeks to use data analytics to improve the risk focus of audits and create better quality insights.

In 2017–18, we developed a local government data visualisation dashboard that accompanied our local government Auditor-General’s Report to Parliament on financial audits. In 2018–19, we will build on this experience to produce other sector dashboards, as well as develop an overarching Data Analytics Strategy.

We will also in 2018–19 implement the innovation roadmap we developed in 2017–18.

Technology and Process Innovation

Continuously improving our systems and processes is crucial to ensure our sustainability, and the efficiency and effectiveness of our work. The key areas of focus for this initiative in 2018–19 will be to uplift our cyber security maturity, enhance our corporate reporting framework — including implementing performance reporting dashboards to support management decision-making — and implement a mobile expense management tool.