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Chapter 16
Audit and Assurance
Services in the Public
Sector

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd

16-


Learning Objective 1:

Australian System of Government


Three tiers:




Federal

State
Local (municipal councils)

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-2


Learning Objective 2:

Accountability


Parliament approves the use of various resources.
• The management of public sector entities is entrusted
with public resources on a stewardship basis.
• Reports are prepared showing the use of resources.
• Public sector auditors provide assurance on reports.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-3


Cycle of Accountability

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-4


Learning Objective 3:

Government Accounting




Australian accounting standards apply to public sector
entities.
• Government departments that are reporting entities are
required to prepare general purpose financial reports on
an accrual basis.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-5


Learning Objective 4:

Public Sector Audit Requirements


Commonwealth Auditor-General, through Australian
National Audit Office (ANAO), is responsible for the
audit of Commonwealth government departments,
statutory authorities and government corporations.
• Each State and Territory has an Auditor-General, who
has similar responsibilities at the State and Territory
level.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-6


Audit mandate


Auditor-General’s comprehensive audit mandate
involves:



Performance auditing; and
Regularity auditing:



Financial report auditing
Compliance auditing

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-7


Audit standards in the public sector


Audits should be performed in accordance with
Australian auditing standards.
• Standards should be applied to the extent that they are
not inconsistent with or unnecessary to public sector
audit mandate.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-8


Reporting duties


The audit report should state whether the financial
report:





is prepared in accordance with Finance Minister’s orders;
and
gives a true and fair view of the matters required by those
orders.

Requirements are virtually identical to Corporations Act
requirements.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-9


Additional reporting matters








Administrative operations;
Significant breaches of legislation;
Public money not correctly accounted for;
Accounting and other records not properly maintained;
Propriety and probity of transactions;
Recommendations to improve administrative processes;
and
Economy, efficiency and effectiveness of administration.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-10


Independence


Critical to the audit function.
• Auditor-General is appointed by Governor-General for a
period of 5-7 years and can only be removed by a
recommendation from both Houses of Parliament in the
same session.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-11


Learning Objective 5:

Performance Audits


A performance audit is an independent, expert and
systematic examination of the management of an
organisation, program or function for the purposes of:




assessing performance;
identifying opportunities for improvement; and
developing recommendations for improvement or further
action.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-12


Objectives of the audit performance


To provide Parliament with assurance of the quality of
management of public resources.
• To assist public sector managers by identifying,
promoting and protecting better management practices.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-13


Performance audit


Might include a review of:






the use of human, financial and other resources.
information systems, performance measures and
monitoring arrangements.
procedures followed by audited bodies for remedying
identified deficiencies.

Emphasis is on the economy, efficiency and
effectiveness of management and procedures.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-14


Economy defined


Economy: Acquisition of financial, human, physical and
information resources of appropriate quality and
quantity at the lowest reasonable cost. (Ref. AUS
806.03)
• Examples of economy include whether the entity has:



followed sound procurement practices; and
acquired the appropriate type, quality and amount of
resources at the right time and for the lowest cost.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-15


Efficiency defined


Efficiency: Use of a given set of resource inputs to
maximise outputs, or the use of minimum input
resources for a predetermined level of output. It is
essentially a resource usage concept. (Ref. AUS
806.04)
• Examples of efficiency include whether the entity has:



prevented idleness and overstaffing; and
prevented duplication of effort by employees.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-16


Effectiveness defined


Effectiveness: The achievement of objectives or other
intended effects of activities. It focuses upon the results
or outcomes of resource usage and organisational
operations. Therefore, effectiveness is ends oriented
rather than means oriented.
• (Ref. AUS 806.05)
• Examples of effectiveness include:



an audit of a program to determine whether it has
achieved its objective.
an analysis of the relevance of an entity's activities to its
objectives.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-17


Relationship between economy, efficiency
and effectiveness

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-18


Stages of a performance audit






Planning;
Preliminary study;
Implementation;
Reporting; and
Follow up.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-19


Conceptual framework for stages in a
performance audit

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-20


Analysing evidence, developing findings
and recommendations

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-21


Learning Objective 6:

Regularity Audits


Involves attestation of financial accountability and
includes elements of both:



Financial report audits (already discussed); and
Compliance audits.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-22


Compliance audits


Two primary forms:




to express an opinion on whether an entity has complied
with relevant requirements or a specific requirement, such
as legislation, regulations, directives or municipal by-laws;
and
to report instances of non-compliance with relevant
requirements observed during the course of discharging
other audit responsibilities.

Copyright  2006 McGraw-Hill Australia Pty Ltd
Revised PPTs t/a Auditing and Assurance Services in Australia 3e by Grant Gay and Roger Simnett
Slides prepared by Roger Simnett

16-23



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