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Center for Audit Excellence

We promote good governance and build the capacity of domestic and international accountability organizations. We can provide your organization with high-quality training, technical assistance, and related products and services.

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About the Center for Audit Excellence

Given the demands and challenges of today’s world, government accountability is more important than ever.

Effective accountability organizations are an essential tool in helping improve government performance and the sound use of public resources.  With a cadre of highly experienced staff with expertise in a wide array of audit-related topics, Center for Audit Excellence services will expand on GAO's longstanding collaboration with the global audit community.  The Center is positioned to offer a wide range of fee-based products and services that can be customized to meet organizations' needs. Among many areas, Center services can help accountability organizations

  • improve their capacity to conduct performance and financial audits,
  • develop and implement sound quality assurance frameworks, strategic plans, and human capital strategies,
  • enhance leadership and supervisory skills in effectively overseeing audits, and
  • implement relevant INTOSAI and U.S. government audit and internal control standards. 

In providing training and technical assistance services, we have the capacity to leverage GAO's institutional knowledge, including audit standards, methodologies and leading practices. The Center's Director and staff reports to the Managing Director of GAO's Strategic Planning and External Liaison Office (SPEL), which leads GAO's collaboration efforts with domestic and international accountability organizations, including the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI). The Center will be staffed primarily by former senior-level GAO experienced auditors and managers to ensure high-quality services and provide independence from GAO units that provide routine audit and oversight services.

Please contact us to discuss any of these fee-based services.


Using a cadre of highly experienced staff with expertise in a wide array of audit-related topics, the Center provides customized training, technical assistance and other products and services, such as needs assessments and mentoring, to help build the capacity of accountability organizations.  We offer these services for a fee, and here are some of the services we can provide:

Performance Audits Icon

Performance Audits:

  • The Center can help accountability organizations improve their capacity to conduct audits that assess the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of public-funded programs and activities. For example, we can provide training and technical assistance services to help auditors understand and implement INTOSAI and U.S. standards for performance audits; design and apply audit methodologies; gather and analyze data using appropriate standards of evidence; and draft clear, concise and well-supported reports that communicate audit findings and recommendations in a convincing manner.
  • Using peer-to-peer coaching, we can help organizations enhance their capacity to undertake performance audits on a wide range of topics, such as procurement, infrastructure and resource management.
Financial Audits Icon

Financial audits

  • The Center can provide training and mentoring to help accountability organizations effectively implement relevant INTOSAI and U.S. government financial audit standards. Center staff can leverage GAO's significant expertise in developing standards and guides such as Government Auditing Standards (known as the Yellow Book) and the Financial Audit Manual.
  • Center staff can also train and mentor staff at all levels of an organization to implement new methodologies and techniques for planning and conducting financial audits; incorporate risk-based management principles; apply evidence standards; and draft reports that are complete, clear, concise and balanced.
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Institutional capacity building

  • The Center can provide technical assistance and training to help organizations develop and implement sound quality assurance frameworks, strategic plans, human capital strategies and performance measurement systems. Audit organizations need these tools to consistently produce high-quality work and achieve significant results. We can also help organizations assess their readiness for peer review and identify improvements prior to undergoing such reviews.
  • The Center can help oversight bodies, such as legislatures, strengthen their processes for conducting oversight of government programs and implementing changes needed to address audit findings.
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Leadership and supervision

  • The Center can train and mentor mid-level managers to hone their leadership and supervisory skills in effectively overseeing the planning, implementation and reporting of financial, performance and other types of audits.
  • We can also provide training and technical assistance to senior-level officials on topics such as engaging with stakeholders such as the public and the media, and leading and implementing organizational change.
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Internal controls

  • Drawing on GAO's experience in issuing Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government (known as the Green Book), the Center can help accountability organizations to understand and establish sound internal controls as well as conduct audits of internal controls.
  • We can also provide training and technical assistance to external and internal audit organizations to help strengthen their relationships and facilitate a cooperative and efficient approach to enhancing the accountability and transparency of public funds.

Please contact us to discuss any of these fee-based services.

We work with organizations in a collaborative fashion to develop and deliver customized training and technical assistance programs to strengthen institutional capacity. After being contacted by an organization that is interested in our services, we:

Engage in dialogue to understand organizations' needs

Engage in dialogue to understand organizations' needs

  • Upon receiving an inquiry or request for services, we will meet with representatives of the requesting organization to gain a better understanding of their needs, identify the types of services that can best meet those needs, and discuss timeframes. Organizations may also request the Center to conduct a formal needs assessment to identify areas where improvements are needed and establish priorities for meeting those needs.
Financial Audits Icon

Assign highly experienced Center staff

  • Our cadre of highly experienced audit professionals and trainers have previously served as senior audit executives and managers, instructors, and professional development coaches at GAO and other organizations. They have skills in a wide array of audit topics and methodologies, and are committed to sharing knowledge to enhance the capacity of other accountability organizations.
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Determine the most cost-efficient location and approach for providing services

  • During discussions with requesting organizations, we work collaboratively to identify the most efficient and cost-effective way to provide services. Our goal is to limit costs for providing services and keep fees at an affordable level. We have the capacity to travel to requesting organizations' locations and anticipate this will often be the most cost-effective way to provide services. However, we also have the capacity to provide services at GAO and are exploring options for delivering services using web-based tools when appropriate.
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Reach agreement on services and fees

  • We will develop and provide the requesting organization a description of proposed services and associated fees. Upon reaching agreement on the scope of work, the Center and requesting organization will sign an agreement outlining project services, timeframes and fees.
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Develop and deliver services

  • After signing an agreement with a requesting organization, we prepare relevant materials, provide regular updates and deliver services in accordance with agreed timeframes and scope of work. We seek feedback from organizations throughout the process to help ensure their needs are met.

Please contact us to discuss any of these fee-based services.

Janet St. Laurent and John Hutton
GAO marks opening of its new Center for Audit Excellence. Pictured here are Janet St. Laurent, the Director of the Center, and John Hutton, a member of the Center.

Upcoming Events

Check back periodically for information on upcoming events and courses offered by the Center.

Contact Us:

Please email us at or call us at (202) 512-7100 to obtain more information about the Center or to discuss specific requests for services.