The ANAO has a structured governance framework that facilitates the effective management of its business resources and other corporate activities to support the delivery of the ANAO’s purpose.

Executive Board of Management

The Executive Board of Management (EBOM) advises and supports the Auditor-General in achieving the ANAO’s purposes. The EBOM and supporting governance committees help set the ANAO’s strategic direction; oversee key business activities; identify strategic and operational risks; oversee the ANAO’s budget and workforce planning; and monitor delivery against the commitments and initiatives outlined in annual business plans.

The standing membership is:

  • Auditor-General (Chair)
  • Deputy Auditor-General
  • Group Executive Directors, Assurance Audit Services Group, Performance Audit Services Group and Professional Services and Relationships Group
  • Senior Executive Director, Corporate Management Group
  • Senior Executive Director, Systems Assurance and Data Analytics Group
  • Chief Financial Officer

For more information about ANAO organisational governance and capability, see Part 4 of the ANAO Annual Report 2017-18.

Planning and performance

The performance of the ANAO is measured through the audit and non-audit activities undertaken over the period of the Corporate Plan. Performance measurement informs the Parliament about the ANAO’s performance in the delivery of its purpose, and provides accountability to the Parliament. The performance framework is also designed for the ANAO’s leadership and staff to understand the impact of the activities they are responsible for, evaluate whether these activities are delivering against the ANAO’s purpose.

Portfolio Budget Statements

The Portfolio Budget Statements (PBS) set measurable deliverables that assess progress against the corporate plan.

The ANAO PBS has one outcome: to improve public sector performance and accountability through independent reporting on Australian Government administration to the Parliament, the executive and the public.

Corporate plan

The corporate plan is the ANAO’s primary planning document. It details the operating environment and sets out how the ANAO will achieve its purpose. The corporate plan is complemented by the annual audit work program.

The ANAO’s corporate plan details the performance measurement framework, which is based on measuring what we did (output); how well we did it (quality and/or efficiency); and what the benefits were (impact). The corporate plan also recognises that to position the ANAO to continue to meet its purpose within the operating environment described, the ANAO will make a range of capability investments. The ANAO’s governance and business planning is facilitated by the ANAO’s strategic planning framework.

Annual audit work program

The annual audit work program sets out the Auditor-General’s audit strategy and the ANAO’s deliverables for the coming year. It informs the Parliament, the public and government sector entities of the planned coverage of the Australian Government sector by way of financial statements audits, performance audits and other assurance activities.

The annual audit work program presents information on the financial statements audits and other assurance activities that will be finalised in the coming year. The program also presents information on performance audits in progress and a rolling program of potential performance audits and assurance engagements for each portfolio.

Annual report

The annual report documents the ANAO’s performance. It addresses all applicable obligations under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 and the Auditor-General Act 1997 and the performance measures set out in the ANAO’s portfolio budget statements and the corporate plan. The ANAO annual report contains the annual performance statement, which reports on the achievement of the performance measures and provides narrative and analysis relating to the ANAO’s performance. The annual performance statements report on the extent to which the ANAO is meeting its purposes through the activities we undertake.

The ANAO’s annual performance statement and financial statements, which appear in the annual report, are audited by the Independent Auditor.

Risk oversight and management systems

The effective management of risk is critical to achieving the ANAO’s purpose. The ANAO’s Risk Management Framework is based on adherence to the Commonwealth Risk Management Policy of July 2014.

Changes in the ANAO’s operating environment are monitored for their potential impact on the ANAO’s ability to achieve its purpose. Damage to our reputation is the single most important consequence should our risk management fail in a significant way, as it goes to the core of the way we conduct our business and our integrity as a professional audit organisation.

For more information about the ANAO’s risk oversight and management systems, see the corporate plan and annual report.

Audit Committee

The Audit Committee provides independent assurance and advice to the Auditor-General, including reviewing the appropriateness of the ANAO’s financial and performance reporting, systems of risk oversight and management, and systems of internal control.

The committee comprises an independent Chair and members, who have appropriate qualifications, knowledge, skills or experience to assist the committee to perform its functions.

For more information about the audit committee, see the annual report.

Internal audit

The ANAO’s internal audit function provides an independent and objective review and advisory service to:

  • provide assurance to the Auditor-General that ANAO financial and operational controls designed to manage the organisation’s risks and achieve the entity’s purpose are operating in an efficient, effective, economical and ethical manner; and
  • assist management in improving the entity’s business performance.

For more information about the internal audit, see the annual report.

External audits

Section 41 of the Auditor-General Act 1997 establishes the position of the Independent Auditor who undertakes the audit of the ANAO’s financial statements and may at any time conduct a performance audit of the ANAO. The Independent Auditor is appointed by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Prime Minister, with the approval of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit (JCPAA). The independent auditor is a part-time statutory appointment for a period of at least three years and not more than five years.

The Independent Auditor has powers and functions similar to those provided to the Auditor-General. The independent auditor’s performance audit reports are tabled in the Parliament and considered by the JCPAA, in its role as the ANAO’s oversight committee.

In performing or exercising their functions or powers, the Independent Auditor must have regard to the audit priorities of the Parliament for audits of the Audit Office, as determined by the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit under paragraph 8(1)(n) of the Public Accounts and Audit Committee Act 1951.

For further information and recent external audit reports visit external audits and reviews.

Peer reviews

The ANAO and the New Zealand Office of the Auditor-General have a long standing arrangement to conduct reciprocal performance audit peer-reviews annually, on a rotating basis. The scope of the review is not a comprehensive examination of the each office’s performance audit practices. Instead, this arrangement seeks to strengthen performance auditing through the provision of constructive feedback and sharing of better practices. The peer review methodology includes examining two published Auditor-General reports against agreed criteria, drawing on information from related planning documents, audit working papers and discussion with ANAO staff.

For further information and recent peer review reports visit external audits and reviews.

External reports on ANAO operations

The purpose of the JCPAA is to hold Commonwealth entities to account for the lawfulness, efficiency and effectiveness with which they use relevant money. Among its responsibilities, the committee considers the operations and resources of the ANAO. The committee is also required to review all Auditor-General reports tabled in the Parliament and to report the results of its deliberations to both houses of the Parliament. Officers of the ANAO provide private briefings and attend public hearings as part of the JCPAA’s review of Auditor-General reports.