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An audit programme dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the digital transformation

The Finance Delegation and the Federal Council have acknowledged the 2021 annual programme of the Swiss Federal Audit Office (SFAO). This programme is defined completely independently by the SFAO and is the result of a risk analysis spanning the entire scope of its portfolio. This audit programme is also dominated by the continuation of work relating to the federal measures taken during the health crisis caused by COVID-19.

In 2021, the SFAO will work on some 200 audits. The more than a hundred employees of the SFAO will use all the audit types at its disposal, in particular financial audits, evaluations and reviews of the procurement of goods and services. Around 100 audits are due to be published. Reminder: the SFAO has actively published its reports since 2014. To date, some 320 audit reports have been issued.

This audit programme was drawn up on the basis of an in-depth analysis of the financial and operational risks borne by the Confederation and its administrative units. Over the years, this analysis has helped to identify more complex audit items with wide implications for society. These items often involve many stakeholders and will therefore be carried out in several different units simultaneously.

In 2021, audits will focus on measures relating to the COVID-19 pandemic (quality of information flows, price audits, deployment of the Armed Forces and civil protection, etc.), while maintaining the data analysis expertise developed by the SFAO during the crisis. The digital transformation will also be a major focus, with audits of electronic legal records and the efficiency of procedures for handling people required to do military service. Other audits, such as federal monitoring of the third Rhone correction and those in the area of asylum, will also be on the agenda, as will audits of key IT projects (Armed Forces computer centres, SUPERB, etc.). Finally, audits that were postponed due to the reallocation of resources in connection with changed priorities and the health crisis will be carried out in 2021. These include, for example, the construction work on Bern station, higher education professors' secondary occupations and protective measures for critical infrastructures.

In December 2020, the Federal Assembly reiterated its confidence in the SFAO's work. In accordance with the financial plan set out in 2019, it allocated additional funds to better cover major risks. The SFAO will thus have a budget of CHF 29 million in 2021.

Press release: Annual programme 2021

Annual programme 2021 (Excel, in German)

Further details:

Michel Huissoud, Director of the SFAO, tel. 058 463 11 11