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Victorian Coat of Arms

Annual Plan 2016–17

The Victorian Auditor-General's Annual Plan 2016–17 was prepared pursuant to the requirements of section 7A of the Audit Act 1994, and tabled in the Victorian Parliament on 8 June 2016.

6. Our themes

6.1 Overview of our themes

In 2014–15, VAGO's annual plan was given a greater strategic focus through the addition of a thematic approach to the selection of topics and areas of focus. While the development of the annual plan centres on identifying specific issues through environmental scanning, stakeholder consultation and desktop research, the introduction of a thematic approach assists in prioritising topics and areas of focus by considering overarching themes as an additional aspect when devising and prioritising our work program.

VAGO will aim to keep the audit themes stable over the next few years to enable comparability over time and assess the impact of audits in particular areas. Planned annual reviews will, however, consider if there is a specific requirement to vary, add, remove or substitute any themes. In selecting the themes consideration was given to:

The 2016–17 themes are outlined in Figure 9 on page 52.

Governance and accountability theme

Today's government is complex and interconnected, and citizens expect high levels of accountability as well as coordinated service delivery across agencies. Governance weaknesses have been a recurring issue revealed in departments over many years. Examples of audits proposed as part of this theme are:

Information and communications technology theme

The Victorian public sector does not have a good track record with information and communications technology (ICT) projects. A number of previous audits, including the 2014–15 Digital Dashboard: Status Review of ICT Projects and Initiatives – Phase 1 and the Information and Communication Technology Controls Report 2014–15, highlighted persistent weaknesses in the planning and implementation of ICT projects, which often incur substantial delays and cost overruns.

Despite significant expenditure in ICT, most agencies and entities provide little, if any, public information specifying their activities and spend. This lack of transparency makes it difficult to determine whether ICT investments have enhanced government services and whether public resources have been spent in an efficient, effective and economical way. Examples of audits that fall under this theme include:

Quality control, regulation and compliance theme

Evolving complex regulatory frameworks require adequate accountability and responsibility for ensuring these frameworks are followed and complied with. Previous audits have found regulators needed to strengthen enforcement and compliance and also provide examples of where there is no routine compliance monitoring or, alternatively, inadequate monitoring, leading to little enforcement activity. Examples of audits for 2016–17 and 2017–18 that fall under this theme include:

Infrastructure and public private partnerships theme

Victoria has experienced significant population growth over the past decade, primarily driven by migration from other states and overseas. This population increase requires a commensurate growth in service delivery. This creates some challenges both in terms of managing and maintaining existing infrastructure and assets, as well as investing in new infrastructure that will meet future needs. This includes investments in high-cost infrastructure for roads, public transport, schools and health facilities. As a result, the Victorian Government is investing in infrastructure with more and more capital projects being undertaken using public private partnerships arrangements.

While VAGO has always undertaken audits examining issues related to major infrastructure projects, due to the increasing investment in infrastructure and the rising number of capital projects, we will be increasing our focus in this area in 2016–17 and beyond. Accordingly, the annual plan includes a number of audits in this area:

We expect that we will continue to focus on major projects going forward and will be looking to build our capability in examining details around the efficient and effective planning, implementation and financing of infrastructure projects.

Figure 9: Thematic overview of proposed VAGO reports to Parliament 2016–17 and 2017–18



1. Governance and accountability

Access to public dental services in Victoria

Clinical governance of Victorian health services ▲

Audit committee governance

Community-based youth services $ ▲

Board performance

Community health centres $ ▲

Diverting young people from the criminal justice system

Effectiveness of school governance

Effectively managing freight growth

Fraud and corruption prevention strategies in the public sector ▲

Effectiveness of the Victorian Public Sector Commission ▲

Implementing the Victorian Coastal Strategy

Internal audit programs

Implementing the taxi industry reforms ▲

Maintaining state-controlled roadways ▲

Developing and evaluating justice policies ▲

Managing community correction orders

Managing sex offenders ▲

Managing performance of rail franchises

Property and exhibit management ▲

Managing public sector records

Reforming the skills system ▲

Public participation and community engagement
ólocal government sector

Supporting workers in transitioning industries ▲

Public participation in government decision-making

V/Line passenger services ▲

Local government: 2015–16 Audit Snapshot

Workforce participation ▲

Portfolio Departments and Associated Entities:
2015–16 Audit Snapshot

Workforce planning ▲

Public Hospitals: 2015–16 Audit Snapshot

Local government: 2016–17 Audit Snapshot

Technical and Further Education Institutes:
2016 Audit Snapshot

Portfolio Departments and Associated Entities:
2016–17 Audit Snapshot

Universities: 2016 Audit Snapshot

Public Hospitals: 2016–17 Audit Snapshot

Water Entities: 2015–16 Audit Snapshot

Technical and Further Education Institutes: 2017 Audit Snapshot


Universities: 2017 Audit Snapshot


Water Entities: 2016–17 Audit Snapshot

2. Information and communications technology

Health ICT strategic planning

Digital dashboard: Status review of major ICT projects and initiatives – Phase 3

Hospital patient data security ▲

ICT disaster recovery planning $ ▲

Security of infrastructure control systems for trains

Security and privacy over surveillance technologies ▲

Financial systems controls report

Financial systems controls report

3. Quality control, regulation and compliance

Effectiveness of the Environmental Effects Statement process ▲

Mining rehabilitation ▲

Efficiency and effectiveness of hospital services: emergency care ▲

Victoria's air quality ▲

Meeting obligations to protect Ramsar wetlands


Regulating gambling and liquor


4. Infrastructure and public–private partnerships

High Value High Risk

High Value High Risk

Managing school infrastructure

Managing private prisons $ ▲

Managing Victoria's public housing

Managing the level crossing removal program ▲


Meeting future water security challenges $

5. Other

Effectively planning for growth

Local government and economic development ▲

Enhancing food and fibre productivity

Auditor-General's Report on the Annual Financial Report of the State of Victoria, 2016–17

Managing Victoria's planning system for land use and development

Three limited scope follow-up audits

Auditor-General's Report on the Annual Financial Report of the State of Victoria, 2015–16


Three limited scope follow-up audits


▲ indicates a new report not in the previous annual plan.
$ indicates audits with follow-the-dollar potential.
Yellow shading indicates Financial Audit reports.

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