Audit of practice

For National Audit Office

The Challenge

The National Audit Office recruits staff in competition with the major accountancy firms and needs to provide conditions of employment that allow it to attract and retain qualified staff. The NAO recognised that their approach to flexible working was not keeping up with changes in the market and invited Wisework to investigate and make recommendations.

The Solution

To do this, Wisework carried out an initial ‘audit’ of NAO practices by interviewing the HR Director, HR Manager and a sample of employees against a common interview format. Existing policies were reviewed along with data from the employee survey and feedback from leavers.In addition, Wisework carried out a telephone survey of the flexible working practices of competing organisations. This resulted in quantitative comparisons between the offerings in the market and some rich qualitative data on the approach taken by other employers.


Subsequently Wisework was invited back to do some further work with focus groups to discuss the way they would like to see flexible working implemented. The objective was to identify rules or guidelines that might be introduced across the organisation to support a consistent introduction of the new working practices.

Reports were produced recommending specific actions to be taken, how the NAO was positioned against the competition and providing a key input into the revised agile working programme now being implemented across the NAO.