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Audit Committee Role:
The role of the Audit Committee is to provide an independent review of the progress reported by the Implementation teams. The main work of the Audit Committee occurs in the 3-week time period between the submission of the Implementation reports (March 17, 2008) and the submission of the Audit reports (April 10, 2008). Audit Committees will meet with the Implementation team chairs during the week after the Audit reports are submitted, and Audit Committee members are also invited to the Stakeholders Conference.
Expectations of Audit Committee:
- Audit committee reports will be based only on the data and information provided by the Implementation team in their posted year-end reports. If more information is needed to prepare an Audit report, the chair of the Audit Committee will ask the chair of the Implementation Team to provide the information within the compressed timeframe for the work of the Audit Committee. Audit chairs and committee members should NOT be involved in data gathering on their own.
- The Audit Committee makes progress judgments based on the action steps and timeline that were agreed to at the beginning of the previous year. If an Implementation team didn’t accomplish the work specified by the action steps and timeline, the progress is not at or above target for that action step. However, if an Implementation team accomplished important work towards the Goal that was not specified in an existing action step, it is possible for the progress to be at or above target for the overall Goal even when progress on individual action steps is not at or above target. In this case, one would expect to see a recommendation for changes in the action steps for the next year.
- Audit committee will help determine whether or not the action steps and timeline are actually moving toward the Goal. They help ensure that progress towards the goal also involves progress toward the spirit of that goal.
- Audit committee will provide feedback on whether or not the action steps are measurable.
- Recommendations/suggestions should include recommendations for changes in action steps and timeline if needed. Definitely discuss the plans for next year so Steering Committee can have another view of those plans.
- Audit committee should provide an independent perspective on resources that are necessary/available to accomplish a particular step. The goal is to help identify where we need to capture resources, and develop arguments to get them.
Audit Committee Reports:
Year 2 final reports from the Implementation Teams and Audit Committees (available from the boxes for each goal at the main Strategic Planning page in the wiki) will include the following information in addition to the uploaded narrative, colored circles, and short narrative summary sections requested last year:
- Specific statement of any recommended changes to action steps or subaction steps. Included in the Recommendation box for each action step.
- A proposed, updated timeline for Year 3. We recognize that the timelines got a little vague in the later years and want to correct this now that we can see more clearly what action items are needed. This will be edited directly into the wiki. You can follow the links from the Year 2 Report page, near the top. The Audit Committee should use the Discussion page for the timeline to share their perspectives about the proposed changes to the timeline for Year 3.
- An explicit statement of resources needed to accomplish each action step, why those resources are needed, and to what extent they are currently available. This is included in the Narrative Report section. A funding page is now available in the wiki from the main strategic planning page, if you want to check the budgets from the past two years.
- A more explicit focus on the tools being used to assess the Implementation progress, and whether the assessment tools currently in use are the most effective ones to use for Year 3. If some actions aren’t measurable, consider re-wording to make them measurable.
The presentations at the Stakeholders Conference will be made jointly by the Implementation and Audit chair for each Goal. To support this, Audit Committee chairs will invite their associated Implementation Team chair, (who can also invite additional team members if desired) to attend a meeting of the Audit committee. This will take place in the week immediately AFTER the Audit report has been submitted in the wiki. At this meeting, the two groups will compare notes, ask questions, clarify points of confusion or substantial disagreement, and figure out what to present at the Stakeholders Conference so that the focus can be on moving the Goal forward.
This year’s Stakeholders Conference will focus on changes needed to move each Goal forward in the coming year. Stakeholders will be asked to provide:
- Feedback on resource allocations when we have more requests than we can support at once
- Feedback on the overall direction - are we meeting the spirit of the goal with the action steps being taken?
- Help with red and yellow lights, but also feedback on whether green lights on specific action steps are really taking us where we want to go with the goal.
- Feedback on changes of direction proposed by Implementation and Audit groups, including updated timelines.
- Measurability of action steps.