Procurement and reporting of consultancy services

4 September 2018

Agencies need to improve their compliance with requirements governing the procurement of consultancy services. These requirements help agencies access procurement savings. Also, some agencies have under-reported consultancy fees in their annual reports for the 2016-17 financial year, according to a report released today by the Auditor-General for New South Wales, Margaret Crawford.

The report examined twelve agencies' compliance with procurement and reporting obligations for consultancy services. It notes that it is difficult to quantify total government expenditure on consultants as agencies define ‘consultants’ differently.

The report also reviewed the effectiveness of the NSW Procurement Board. The Board's oversight of agency and supplier compliance with requirements is limited as it relies on self-reporting, and the information provided is insufficient to properly monitor compliance. Also, the Board is yet to publish any statistics or analysis of agencies’ procurement of business advisory services due to issues with the quality of data and systems limitations.

The report recommends that NSW Procurement better understand agencies' business needs and assist them to improve capability and accountability for procurement.

Further information

A full copy of the report is available here.

Barry Underwood, Director, Office of the Auditor-General, on 0403 073 664 and email


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