Good governance of a SAI is fundamental to ensuring SAI credibility and delivery of high-quality audits leading to impact for citizens. It requires planning, monitoring, assessing and managing SAI performance at the strategic and operational level; ensuring well-functioning human resource systems that promote ethical and gender-sensitive behaviour, and having strong underlying ICT and risk management systems and processes. The quality of the SAI’s governance is critically dependent on the exercise of effective and inclusive leadership.
The 2017 IDI Global Stocktaking report shows that while almost all SAIs have a strategic plan, there are substantial opportunities for improving their quality and for strengthening their implementation through sound strategic management processes. To provide effective support in this area, the IDI has been implementing two interrelated initiatives. First, IDI acts as an operational lead supporting SAIs in applying the SAI Performance Measurement Framework (SAI PMF) assessment methodology. SAI PMF provides a holistic and objective basis for developing relevant strategic plans, and for measuring the resulting changes in SAI performance and capacity over time. Building on SAI PMF, the comprehensive Strategy, Performance Measurement and Reporting (SPMR) initiative supports SAIs in strengthening all aspects of SAI strategic management – strategic and operational planning, monitoring of implementation and decision-making, as well as reporting against progress made.
In 2020, part of the work stream was re-designed, in order to provide a response to several developments. First, two of the initiatives, namely SAIs Fighting Corruption (SFC) and SAIs Engaging with Stakeholders (SES), have come to an end in 2020. Second, there was a recognized need and a clear potential for the work stream to become both more integrated and aligned in terms of focus areas, and at the same time be more agile with regard to its delivery approach. Finally, both COVID-19 and requests and suggestions from the SAI community have brought a need to consider new areas. As a result, next to its continued focus focus on strategic management through the SAI PMF and SPMR initiatives, as of 2021 the work stream will also include dedicated interventions on ICT management, Human Resources, Ethics and Gender (HEG), Risk and Crisis Management (RCM), as well as Leadership masterclasses on topics of key importance for SAI leadership.