This audit follows up on the three recommendations QAO made in Monitoring and reporting performance (Report 18: 2013–14), which was tabled in June 2014.
Public sector entities must report publicly on their performance as part of their accountability obligations. This demonstrates their effective stewardship and responsible use of taxpayer‑funded resources.
The original audit, Monitoring and reporting performance (Report 18: 2013–14), examined how well the 20 core Queensland departments measured, monitored, and publicly reported on their non‑financial performance. We found that the measures, known as service standards, that the majority of departments reported on their service areas fell well short of being direct measures of the efficiency or the effectiveness of the services they delivered. The widespread lack of service standards and targets for service efficiency was of particular concern.
We made three recommendations in Monitoring and reporting performance (Report 18: 2013–14), two of which were accepted. Central agencies did not support our third recommendation — that departments be required to publish an audited performance statement in their annual reports — primarily because they perceived it would be costly and complex to implement. Instead, the Department of Premier and Cabinet and Queensland Treasury proposed that departments implement alternative assurance mechanisms over non-financial performance measures.
This audit follows up on the progress and effectiveness of departments in implementing the two accepted recommendations, and checks the status of the department’s assurance activities regarding the third recommendation.