The government has agreed that Principal Accounting Officers of the main central government departments should provide a statement of their accountability systems, covering all of the relevant accountability relationships within the department, including relationships with arm’s length bodies and third party delivery partners in an Accounting Officer System Statement. This requirement does not apply to the NAO, but our accountability relationships and processes are set out in full in our Governance Statement and other sections of the Annual Report.

Jump to downloads

“The past year has been marked by a great pace of change in the public sector. With ongoing challenges to the financial sustainability of public services, we have seen government trying to do more with fewer resources by delivering services in a different way, through greater delegation to local bodies, partnerships with the private and third sectors and with transformation projects with large digital components. This level of change brings opportunities for efficiencies but also challenges to accountability and securing value for money. At the same time, government’s commitments to major infrastructure projects and the UK’s decision to leave the European Union require the government to carefully prioritise resources.

"We have responded to these challenges by thinking flexibly about the outputs of our work and how we report to maximise the value we add. We have improved our influence by engaging in new ways with those we audit and being more responsive in tailoring our work to the audience with shorter, focused work. Increasingly, we are engaging in ‘value management’, which means it is now common practice for us to take an ongoing approach to engaging with the bodies we audit and managing the value our work brings. In light of the uncertainties inherent to exiting the European Union, we are using our audit perspective to help Parliament focus its attention on issues that will be most critical to an efficient and effective implementation of exit. At the same time, we have also successfully taken on new audit responsibilities including those for the BBC, the Bank of England and UK Asset Resolution Ltd.”

Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office


Latest corporate information