Request for your feedback

Draft annual plan 2023/24.

Tēnā koutou katoa.

I am pleased to present my Draft annual plan 2023/24 for your feedback.

My Office works to improve trust and promote value in the public sector. We do this by assessing and reporting on how well public organisations perform and account for their performance. Our annual plan is an important accountability document for us. It sets out the discretionary work that I intend my Office to carry out during 2023/24. As always, the focus of our work will be on the areas where we can best influence improvements in the performance and accountability of public organisations.

We have a range of functions to help us achieve this. The most significant is our core mandatory audit function, which makes up about 85% of our work. We also monitor government spending against the authority provided by Parliament. Together, this work underpins the advice and support we provide to select committees to assist with parliamentary scrutiny of public organisations.

This draft annual plan is aligned with our four strategic priorities from my strategic intentions to 2028:

What our draft annual plan covers

This draft annual plan covers our discretionary programme of work for 2023/24. Our discretionary work includes performance audits, special studies, commentaries and research, regular reports and updates, and good practice guidance.

This plan does not cover our mandatory audits of public organisations,1 the inquiries that we might carry out,2 or most of our international work.3. However, given the significance of our mandatory work and my strategic focus on ensuring the sustainability of our core assurance role, we have included contextual information on the work we are doing to further improve this important aspect of New Zealand’s public accountability system.

In 2023/24, we also plan to introduce a new product – a rapid audit. The rapid audit will be a shorter form of performance audit, designed to provide clarity or insight on matters of immediate public interest in a short time frame. We aim for these rapid audits to be completed in about 12 weeks. We have successfully completed audits within this timeframe in the past (examples include our work on personal protective equipment during the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic and our work to look at the roll out of the Covid-19 immunisation programme) but we now intend to regularise this as part of our annual programme of work.

We selected the work to be included in this draft annual plan after considering a range of feedback received during the year, including:

  • feedback from select committees;
  • concerns raised with our Office by members of Parliament and the public;
  • intelligence gathered through our audits and other work with public organisations;
  • advice from our central and local government advisory groups; and
  • hearing views from the public about our performance audit work through a survey of New Zealanders.

We welcome your feedback

Your views on our proposed work programme, and on what is most important to you, will help us understand how we can further refine our work in 2023/24.

In this year’s public survey, we asked for feedback on specific topics relevant to our strategy. As with last year, the survey largely confirmed the topics we have included in our plan. Areas of interest for the public that we could focus on include value for money and resilience of infrastructure, and the effectiveness of workforce planning in the health and education sectors. We are interested in your views on which of these we should prioritise for a further performance audit in 2023/24.

I will present my final annual plan 2023/24 to Parliament before the end of June 2023.

Your feedback is requested by Friday 26 May 2023. I look forward to hearing from you.

Nāku noa, nā

John Ryan
Controller and Auditor-General

27 April 2023

1: See Appendix 1 for a summary of the types of public organisations we audit.

2: In contrast to our planned discretionary work, our inquiries work responds to matters of current concern so the number and topics we might inquire into varies by year.

3: Our international work, such as our role as Secretary-General of the Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (PASAI), is carried out under a contract with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and managed through that contractual relationship.