Engagement of probity advisers and probity auditors

Three key agencies are not fully complying with the NSW Procurement Board’s Direction for engaging probity practitioners, according to a report released today by the Acting Auditor-General for New South Wales, Ian Goodwin. They also do not have effective processes to achieve compliance or assure that probity engagements achieved value for money.

This audit examined Transport for NSW, the Department of Education and the Ministry of Health.

These agencies tended to rely on a limited number of external probity service providers, sometimes using them on a continuous basis. Also in some instances, agencies did not always manage probity practitioners’ independence and conflicts of interest transparently.

The report recommends agencies review and revise probity policies, processes, and systems so they use probity practitioners more effectively. 

We also found agencies’ probity management would benefit if central agencies provided more guidance to support consistent application of the Direction.

Probity is important for NSW government agencies as it helps ensure decisions are made with integrity, fairness and accountability, while attaining value for money.

Further information

Barry Underwood, Director, Office of the Auditor-General, on 0403 073 664 and email barry.underwood@audit.nsw.gov.au.