SAI Independence Resource Kit

SAI Performance Measurement Framework (SAI PMF)


SAI PMF is a tool which gives a holistic assessment of SAI Performance through analysis of its enablers and constraints.

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SAI PMF assessments can be used to monitor and report on a supported SAI’s progress over time. Assessments cover six main areas of the SAI, including independence, internal governance, audit quality, resource management and stakeholder management.

How the SAI PMF helps to assess SAI independence

The SAI Performance Measurement Framework allows for supreme audit institutions to measure their strengths and weaknesses through evidence- based assessments of foundations and practices of the institutions. Its criteria are based on the International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions as they are issued by INTOSAI. The exercise is carried out through an indicator-led analysis and a qualitative assessment of performance, which helps the SAI identify good practices but also where there are gaps to fill. Hence, it is a tool for a capacity need analysis. The conduction and results of the SAI PMF assessment is therefore a good starting point for any cooperation between a SAI and external stakeholder.

The framework covers six domains deemed as fundamental to the operations of the SAI. Domain A assesses the SAI’s Independence and Legal Framework. Through Domain A assessors obtain an initial understanding of the SAI’s institutional capacity. The first indicator of the framework assesses the de jure and de facto independence, starting with its role and position under the country constitution and whether the SAI’s independence and leadership is protected by it. It also analyses the current legal framework regulating the SAI, and covers both legal and operational autonomy, as they have been outlined by the Mexico Declaration. This includes protection against interference from other branches of power, as well as its’ day-to-day ability to plan its operations, to budget and plan for human resources and the appointment of leaders. The indicator includes assessment of actual practices and captures issues of interference from other branches or institutions.

The analysis is completed by the assessment of the SAI mandate, covering the legal framework and actual practices, as well as recent interferences from the Executive. The indicator seeks to evaluate whether the SAI’s mandate is sufficiently broad to fulfil its role, whether it has access to information and to which extent it has the right and obligation to report on its work.
The analysis of domain A is often the starting point for understanding why the SAI operates and performs like it does. These findings are often echoed throughout the assessment and has consequences for results in the other domains.

The results of the SAI PMF reports, the final products of the assessment is the product of the SAI who during the planning process can indicate whether or not they want the results to be shared, and with whom, as well as whether to publish the report or not.

For donors interested in supporting SAIs in conduction a SAI PMF, it is worth to note that the INTOSAI Development Initiative is the operational lead.

Donor Resource Kit