Almost a year on from our first local government focus area audit report, I am pleased to present this Management of Supplier Master Files report which looks into state and local government entities.
Controls prevent things going wrong and are particularly important in financial management processes, where there is an inherent risk of financial misappropriation.
Our focus area audits, such as this one, look at a diverse range of entities and highlight improvement opportunities across key aspects of financial management controls.
These narrow scope audits can be considered as ‘hygiene’ audits as they give an indication of the health of financial management control, in this instance for both local and state government sectors.
We conduct these audits as an extension of our annual financial audits, using more detailed testing than is required for forming our financial audit opinions.
Importantly, the findings of these audits are likely representative of issues in other government entities that were not part of our sample. I encourage all entities, and not just those audited, to periodically assess themselves against these risks and controls on an ongoing basis. Our better practice checklist at Appendix 1 has been designed to assist entities to run their own hygiene checks.
Fostering understanding about the importance of strong internal control frameworks, around not only the management of supplier master files, but also areas such as procurement, information system security, and regulatory functions, will continue to be a priority in my future work.