Performance Audit Services
Performance Audit Services deliver agency-specific and cross-agency performance audits. The objectives of a performance audit are twofold. The first is to provide Parliament with assurance relating to the administration of Australian Government entities and programs. The second objective is to assist public sector managers by identifying and promoting better administrative and management practices.
Performance audits can include an examination of one or more of the following:
- economy (minimising cost);
- efficiency (maximising the ratio of outputs to inputs);
- effectiveness (the extent to which intended outcomes are achieved); and
- legislative and policy compliance.
In addition to performance audits, the Auditor-General can undertake other assurance activities which may be managed through a formal report or correspondence.
The ANAO also produces a program of better practice guides based on emerging issues that have an impact on the performance of the public sector and, to a large extent, draw on the results of previous audits. Better practice guides aim to improve public administration by providing a vehicle for better practices employed in some organisations to be recognised and promulgated to all Australian Government entities.
In 2011–12, Performance Audit Services expects to publish:
- 55 performance audits (including cross-agency audits);
- five better practice guides; and
- one Defence Materiel Organisation Major Projects Report.
The composition of products may change as more detailed planning is undertaken, or as other issues, such as stakeholder requests that in the Auditor-General’s opinion warrant further inquiry, emerge.
 Cross-agency audits are general performance audits of particular themes or common aspects of administration across a number of entities.