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Strategic planning framework

Strategic planning drives the ANAO’s activities and enables the ANAO to adjust its activities and resourcing to align with emerging priorities and support achievement of its purpose. The ANAO identifies its organisational priorities and performance measures in its corporate plan, and reports on its performance in the annual performance statements of the annual report. The Executive Board of Management tracks all strategic projects, including milestones and dependencies, and ensures that the business of the ANAO’s governance committees is aligned with the ANAO’s strategic priorities.

In addition, the Auditor-General publishes an annual audit work program. The work program forms part of the strategic planning framework, designed to reflect the organisation’s audit strategy and inform the Parliament, government entities and the public of the planned audit coverage for the Australian Government sector.

Key elements of the ANAO’s strategic planning framework for 2019–20 are presented in Figure 4.1. Further details on the ANAO corporate plan and annual audit work program are provided below.

Corporate plan

The corporate plan is the ANAO’s primary planning document and sets out how we will achieve our purpose over a four-year period. The corporate plan is complemented by the annual audit work program, which reflects the ANAO’s audit strategy and deliverables for the coming financial year.

The corporate plan articulates the purpose of the ANAO and the environment within which the ANAO expects to operate. It details the planned performance framework, including the methodology, data and information to be used to measure and assess performance. The corporate plan outlines our intended capability investments, including the plans and strategies we will implement to achieve our purpose. It also includes an overview of the ANAO’s risk oversight and management systems.

Annual audit work program

The annual audit work program sets out the ANAO’s audit strategy and deliverables for the coming financial year. It informs the Parliament, the public and government sector entities of the planned coverage of the Australian Government sector. The program presents information on the financial statement audits, performance audits and other assurance engagements for each portfolio. It also includes information on audits in progress and audits recently tabled.

A whole-of-organisation planning process brings together the knowledge and insights gained across all ANAO audit activity to identify priority areas of audit coverage. In determining the 2020–21 program, the ANAO considered prior-year audit and other review findings and what these indicate about the portfolio risks and areas for improvement, as well as emerging risks from new investments, reforms or operating environment changes.

The ANAO provided a draft of the annual audit work program to the Parliament for consultation through the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit (JCPAA), consistent with the Auditor-General’s requirement to have regard to the audit priorities of the Parliament. We also invited feedback from accountable authorities of Australian Government entities, members of the public, the Australasian Council of Auditors-General, the Commonwealth Ombudsman, the Inspector-General of Taxation and the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security.