Reporting on the auditing of commercial buildings

Closed 14 Jul 2020

Opened 30 Jun 2020

Feedback updated 14 Dec 2021

We asked

The Building Confidence Report (BCR) Implementation Team asked for your feedback about how:

  • reporting of auditing information could impact compliance with the National Construction Code, State and Territory legislation and Australian Standards;
  • how and when auditing information should be reported; and
  • your perceptions of the benefits and disadvantages of such reporting.

You said

We received 199 responses. Responses were positive about the impacts of reporting on auditing, with almost all respondents expressing that reporting on auditing would benefit industry, building owners, tenants and users. Two thirds of respondents expressed an interest in more, and more frequent, engagement by building regulators about auditing, in addition to formal reporting.

We did

The BCR Implementation Team used your feedback to inform the draft Auditing and Compliance Publication Framework, which was out for consultation from November 2020 - January 2021.

An analysis of this feedback, titled Auditing and compliance - Supplementary information, was published in December 2021.  


The Building Confidence Report (BCR), published in 2018, identified there were regulatory and compliance deficiencies in the regulatory oversight of the construction of commercial buildings (Class 2 – 9 buildings) in Australia.

Recommendation 7 of the BCR is: That each jurisdiction makes public its audit strategy for regulatory oversight of the construction of commercial buildings, with annual reporting on audit findings and outcomes.

This survey relates to auditing of commercial buildings only. It invites you to provide your views about reporting on auditing strategies, activities and outcomes. It asks how reporting of this type of information would impact compliance with state and territory legislation, the National Construction Code (NCC) and Australian Standards, how auditing information should be reported and what the associated benefits or disadvantages of increased reporting about auditing may be.

The BCR notes that this recommendation does not mean that the auditing and oversight of domestic buildings is not necessary. The intention of the recommendation is that audit programs for commercial buildings are prioritised for development but that auditing strategies might include domestic buildings in future. This is in recognition that defects and non-compliances in commercial buildings usually present a higher risk to occupant safety and are more difficult and expensive to rectify.

This survey uses the BCR's definitions of commercial and domestic buildings.

  • ‘Commercial buildings’ refers to Class 2 – 9 buildings, including multi-storey residential buildings and public buildings. The term captures both public and privately-owned buildings, including those intended to be occupied by vulnerable people, such as aged care facilities, hospitals, childcare centres and low-cost accommodation.
  • ‘Domestic buildings’ refers to Class 1 and 10 buildings which includes dwellings, whether detached or attached (such as terrace houses and villas), sheds, swimming pools and other non-habitable structures.

Additional information on building classifications is available on the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) website.

In this survey:

  • auditing strategies are strategies that guide decisions on the scope, purpose and focus areas of audits, how and when audits are conducted,
  • auditing activities are the audits as conducted (which may be different from as-planned), and
  • auditing outcomes are the findings and recommendations for improvement that stem from the auditing activities.

Why your views matter

The BCR Implementation Team was established in July 2019 by the Building Ministers’ Forum to respond to the BCR's recommendations.

In response to recommendation 7, the BCR Implementation Team is developing a high-level principles-based publication framework, which will guide nationally consistent, Australia-wide public reporting on the auditing of the construction of commercial buildings.

To develop this publication framework, the BCR Implementation Team will consider best practice reporting of auditing strategies, activities and outcomes. Taking time to express your views on auditing reporting through completion of this survey will help to ensure the publication framework can deliver benefits for regulators, industry, and all owners, tenants and users of new commercial buildings.

The survey is open until 11:59PM AEST Tuesday 14 July 2020.

What happens next

The BCR Implementation Team appreciates your feedback and will draw on it to develop a high-level principles-based publication framework. This framework is intended to guide nationally consistent and Australia-wide public reporting on auditing of the construction of commercial buildings to the benefit of industry and the community.


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