African Organisation of English-speaking Supreme Audit Institutions

PAS Guideline 5 Designing Performance Audits – 2013

A difficult phase in performance auditing is planning and designing. In this paper the area to be audited – perhaps a result of strategic planning – is taken for granted, and the auditors are familiar with the motives and assumptions behind that decision. The purpose of this paper is to provide guidance on how to manage the subsequent operational planning (regardless of the area to be audited).

It focuses on the process of developing audit questions, criteria and design matrix. It builds upon the performance auditing standards and guidelines issued by INTOSAI, and properly done it will help implementing the audit objectives. For performance audits, the audit objectives are often set out in the form of one overall audit question and a limited number of subsidiary questions (i.e. what is needed to be known) or hypotheses (i.e. what is needed to be confirmed). The aim of the audit is to answer, verify and conclude against these