Senior Management Meeting Minutes Mar 2022

Minutes of Senior Management Team (SMT) Meeting held on 15 March 2022 @ 10am (Bradford Court)

In attendance:  Kieran Donnelly, Chair (C&AG), Rodney Allen (COO), Neil Gray (Director), Colette Kane (Director), Brian O’Neill (Director), Suzanne Walsh (Director), Patrick Barr (Director), Tanya McNally (Secretary)

Apologies: Tomas Wilkinson (Director)






Apologies were recorded from Tomas Wilkinson.



Declaration of Conflicts of Interest

There were no issues declared by members.



Minutes of Previous meeting and Matters Arising

Minutes of the previous meeting held on 15 February 2022 were agreed and the matters arising noted as updated.



Draft Business Plan 2022-23

Brian O’Neill presented the Draft Business Plan to SMT.  The Group fully endorsed and agreed the Plan.


KPI’s Update

A report to update members on progress was presented. Further explanations were required for those KPIs currently categorised as red.  It was agreed to meet in early April 2022 to review the Public Reporting Forward Work Programme.  


BTP Phase 2 – ISQM1 Update

Suzanne Walsh presented a paper to update SMT on progress made in relation to the Office’s ISQM1 project.  Quality objectives and risks have now been identified and agreed and the project team will assess this information with a view to identifying any gaps.  The output will be a quality manual that incorporates all relevant policies and procedures for both financial audit and public reporting.



Investors in People (IIP) – Keeping in touch: Your We invest in people summary

Following a recent annual accreditation review meeting with the IIP consultant, Brian O’Neill presented the paper to the Group which provided a high level overview of what has been happening in the Office since IIP accreditation was awarded in March 2021.  It was agreed for the report to be issued to all staff.


Management Information Report

The interactive performance report detailing key performance outturns for the public reporting and financial audit programmes to February 2022 was discussed.  

The position in relation to backlog accounts will continue to be monitored by the Operational Management Team (OMT) and the C&AG will be updated accordingly.



Corporate Report

Brian O’Neill provided an overview on the current position highlighting the following:


  • 2021-22 Forecast Figures – Noted by members.
  • 2022-23 Budget – Agreed and noted by Members.
  • Accommodation Project – Completion date expected 15 July 2022.
  • IT – Update provided on the new version of Time and Space, Health Check of PAMS and MKI systems has commenced and IT policies are currently being reviewed.


  • Recruitment - Audit Manager recruitment has now closed and a new Audit Manager will be announced this week, Auditor recruitment still ongoing.  Recruitment is planned for a new Non-Executive Director in March 2022.
  • Attendance Management - Members discussed absence figures per employee in the rolling period 1 March 2021 to 28 February 2022 noting a significantly increasing trend. 
  • Annual Leave uptake - Members noted the position on annual leave balances at 03 March 2022
  • Performance Management – Members noted the summary as per 03 March 2022.  Members were also reminded to ensure all end of year reviews were completed for all staff.
  • Employee Relations – Members noted pay negotiations are ongoing, REMCOM meeting was held in February 2022, further discussions with TU side ongoing.
  • Employee Engagement & Wellbeing – Members noted that Health Champions are creating a draft action plan, next meeting scheduled March 2022.


Business Support

  • Members were updated on Complaints, Procurement, Legal, Information Management, Governance, Communication and Assembly Liaison.



Technical Report

Suzanne Walsh provided the group with a technical update focusing on three key areas: the review of financial process, the appointment of EQCR directors and the Quality Control Review Process for 2021-22.  It is anticipated that the results of the QCR process will be finalised and made available to staff in the coming weeks.

Suzanne also provided an update on the data analytics SBRI project.  Phase two has now concluded and suppliers are due to provide a final report and presentation to the project team, (including representatives from Audit Scotland and Audit Wales), on 18 March after which a detailed analysis and recommendation will be provided to SMT regarding next steps.



Risk Management

Corporate Risk Register

Colette Kane presented the Risk register to Members.  The Corporate Risk Register Working Group (CRRWG) met on 23 February 2022, changes were proposed and discussed at OMT.

Members noted the highlighted contents and agreed the following:

  • The reference to possible difficulties issuing contracts has been removed as audit contracts have now been awarded.
  • Additional risk factor added to reflect recruitment of a new C&AG
  • A risk factor added referencing the ongoing Extraordinary Audit with liaison with Legal Advisors included as a first line of defence.

Review of Project Risk Registers

Colette noted that the CRRWG considered the risk registers for the ISA 315 and Accommodation Refurbishments projects, members noted there were no additional risks for escalation at this time. 


Papers to Note:

  • Advisory Board Draft Minutes of Meeting 21 February 2022 – Members noted the minutes.




Date of Next Meeting

26 April 2022 @2pm.