The Minister for Defence commissioned the First Principles Review of Defence (the Review) in August 2014. The Review was ‘designed to ensure Defence is fit for purpose and able to promptly respond to future challenges’. In April 2015, following government consideration, the Minister for Defence released the report of the Review, entitled First Principles Review: Creating One Defence.
The Review made 76 recommendations, of which six were key recommendations. The Government agreed or agreed in-principle to 75 recommendations. The Review set out a high-level implementation plan in its last chapter, which envisaged that ‘the vast majority of the change should be delivered within two years’. That two-year period ran from 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2017.
The ANAO adopted the following high-level audit criteria:
- Defence has established sound governance arrangements for the implementation of the First Principles Review.
- Defence has implemented the recommendations agreed by government in the report of the First Principles Review, Creating One Defence.
- Defence can demonstrate that the intended outcomes of the First Principles Review are being achieved.