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The objective of this follow-up audit was to assess whether Defence had taken appropriate action on recommendations made in the ANAO's 1995 audit report on Management Audit Branch (MAB), which is responsible for internal audit in Defence, and to assess whether the internal audit function in Defence could be improved.
The Commonwealth has significant foreign exchange risk exposures including $A8.4 billion of foreign currency transactions with the Reserve Bank of Australia in 1998-99. Under the Financial Management and Accountability Act and its associated Regulations, all agencies are required to assess and, where possible, manage, foreign exchange risk. The audit reviewed four agencies that have substantial foreign currency payment exposures namely:
the Department of Defence;
the Australian Agency for International Development;
the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; and
the Department of Finance and Administration.
The objective of the audit was to identify and assess the efficiency and cost effectiveness of the management of foreign exchange risk across the selected agencies, also to identify opportunities to improve the management of foreign exchange risk, including any associated potential financial savings that could accrue to the Commonwealth.
The audit reviewed the management of the first round of Job Network contracts, which focused on Job Matching, Job Search Training and Intensive Assistance. The objective of the audit was to assess the efficiency and effectiveness of the Department of Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business's management of the first round of employment services contracts. A key part of this examination was to assess the Department's level of confidence that the program was meeting government objectives based on performance and management information.
Tactical fighter operations (TFOs) form the basis of Australia's current military capability to ensure air superiority. Air superiority over the Australian territory and maritime approaches is an essential element in Australia's defence strategy. The audit objectives were to:
assess whether the resources used to provide the F/A-18 tactical fighter force operational capability are managed cost-effectively; and
identify areas for improvement in the coordination, planning and practices employed in administration of tactical fighter operations.
The audit reviewed the construction of facilities for the Australian Defence Force and the Department of Defence by the Defence Estate Organisation. The objective of the audit was to assess the efficiency and administrative effectiveness of the Organisation's project delivery function, highlighting effective practice and, where appropriate, making practical recommendations to enhance facilities project management. The main projects examined were the facilities required for the Army Presence in the North and the Russell Hill Redevelopment.
The audit reviewed the retention of military personnel that are managed by the Australian Defence Force which comprises the three Services. The objective of the audit was to review the management of personnel retention within the ADF with a view to evaluating the measures Defence has in place to monitor and control the flow of trained personnel from the Services
The audit objective was to form an opinion on the Department of Veterans' Affairs administration of its activities to maintain and enhance the health and independence of veterans and war widows in their homes and in the community.
In a military context, individual readiness refers to the ability of an individual member to be deployed, within a specified notice period, on operations, potentially in a combat environment, to perform the specific skills in which he or she has been trained. Individual readiness is the foundation on which military preparedness is built. Maintenance of a specified level of individual readiness in peacetime (along with other factors such as equipment readiness and collective training) influences the speed with which personnel can deploy on operations. The objective of this audit is to ensure that members can be deployed on operations, potentially in a combat environment, to perform their specific skills within a notice period of 30 days.
The objective of this audit was to form an opinion on the adequacy of, and to identify best practice in, Commonwealth agencies' electricity procurement systems and procedures. In doing so, the ANAO also formed an opinion on the level and results of participation by Commonwealth agencies in the National Electricity Market. The audit concentrated on adherence by agencies to the principles of the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles (March 1998), emphasising the importance of Commonwealth agencies achieving value-for-money (VFM) in their purchasing. VFM is one of the six principles on which the Guidelines are based.
The audit reviewed the operations of the Bureau of Meteorology. The Bureau's functions include the taking and recording of meteorological observations and other observations required for the purposes of meteorology; the forecasting of weather and of the state of the atmosphere; the issue of warnings of weather conditions likely to endanger life or property; the supply, publication and promotion of meteorological information; and cooperation with international meteorological agencies in relation to the functions just listed. The objectives of the audit were to:
use national and international benchmarks to evaluate the Bureau's performance in terms of timeliness, cost and quality of weather services to meet the needs of clients; and
assess how well the Bureau is placed in measuring its outputs/outcomes within the context of the Accrual Budgeting Framework.
The audit reviewed the operations of the Civil Aviation Authority (CASA), which has prime responsibility for regulating aviation safety in Australia. The audit objectives were to assess the efficiency and effectiveness of the management systems and procedures used by CASA to ensure compliance with regulatory controls by Air Operator's Certificate holders operating passenger-carrying aircraft within High Capacity Regular Public Transport; Low Capacity Regular Public Transport and charter industry sectors; and Certificate of Approval holders. Aviation safety compliance includes entry control, surveillance and enforcement.
The Department of Defence spends some $2.4 billion a year on major equipment acquisition projects. The audit objective was to assess Defence's arrangements for higher-level management of major equipment acquisition projects. The principal aim was to formulate practical recommendations that would both enhance Defence's management of major acquisition projects and provide a degree of assurance about its ongoing apparent capacity to do so efficiently and effectively.
The audit reviewed management of the Commonwealth's role in preparing for, and managing, pest and disease emergencies requiring a rapid response. The audit focused on the role of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry -Australia (AFFA), which is the Commonwealth Department with primary portfolio responsibility for coordinating the national and international response to an emergency. The audit did not address preventative measures such as quarantine and border controls; controlled release of exotic diseases or pests; or emergencies associated with previously known endemic diseases, food safety or chemical residue issues.