Financial reporting within the Transport Cluster continues to improve with reported misstatements down 96 per cent since 2011-12 to just three in 2015-16, according to a report released today by the NSW Auditor-General, Margaret Crawford.
New information system de-scoped to manage business risks and program budget
Transport for NSW (TfNSW) has been implementing an Enterprise Resource Planning computer system (SAP ERP) across Transport Cluster agencies. The budget for its program office is $196 million, including $45.0 million for contingencies. The major transport agencies have a separate budget for implementation totalling $122 million.
To manage the business risks and program budget, State Transport Authority (STA) has been removed from the program and Contract and Catalogue Management functionality for all agencies has been deferred to June 2017. In addition, TfNSW will not accept further changes to the system. Over 100 change requests were approved between January 2013 and October 2016, costing $82.0 million.
Ms Crawford said ‘Limiting the project scope by excluding STA, deferring the roll out of functionality and restricting legitimate change requests could impair quality and result in a system that does not fully meet agencies’ needs’.
‘Transport agencies should review project budgets and delivery schedules to address any impact of deferred implementation’ she recommended.
Bus operators are not meeting punctuality targets, and rail operators’ punctuality is improving
Bus operators did not meet most punctuality targets in 2015-16. ‘Private operators with metropolitan contracts almost never met punctuality targets for the middle or the end of a trip, and STA hasn’t met any of its metropolitan targets over the last four years’, Ms Crawford commented.
‘Because public transport services are crucial in getting customers to their destinations on time, TfNSW should consider including financial penalties for not meeting punctuality targets in future contracts with bus operators’, the Auditor-General said. ‘Currently, only private bus operators can be financially penalised if they do not meet punctuality targets at the start of the trip’, she added.
The punctuality of suburban, intercity and regional rail services improved in 2015–16, with regional services achieving punctuality targets for the first time in 13 years.
‘Although punctuality improved, afternoon peak intercity services did not achieve punctuality targets on 161 of the 253 weekdays in 2015–16’ the Auditor-General said. ‘Poor reliability of the ageing intercity fleet and network incidents were the key factors impacting punctuality’, she added.
Barry Underwood, Executive Officer, on 9275 7220 or 0403 073 664 and email email@example.com.