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03. Performance measures

Last updated 8 August 2021

Our performance measures align with our strategic objectives. Our strategic initiatives aim to improve performance against our strategic objectives into the future.


  • Confidence – community confidence in the ATO
  • Registration – proportion of companies and individuals registered in the system
  • Lodgment – proportion of activity statements and income tax returns lodged on time
  • Payment – proportion of liabilities paid on time by value
  • Correct reporting – tax gap as a proportion of revenue
  • Debt – ratio of collectable debt to net tax collections
  • Total revenue effects – tax revenue from all compliance activities
  • Tax assured – proportion of the tax base where the ATO has justified trust that tax paid is correct based on the proportion of income, deductions and tax offsets assured

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  • Influence – government and Treasury perceptions of the ATO and the quality of our advice

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  • Compliance cost – adjusted median cost to individual taxpayers of managing their tax affairs
  • Digital – proportion of inbound transactions received digitally for key services

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  • Working together – partner perceptions of how the ATO is working together with them to administer the tax and superannuation systems

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  • Culture – level of employee engagement
  • Gender equality – female representation in the senior executive service (SES) and executive level (EL) classifications
  • Indigenous representation – proportion of ATO staff who identify as Indigenous
  • Disability representation – proportion of ATO staff who identify with disability
  • Staff experience – employee perceptions around whether they have access to the tools and resources needed to perform well

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  • Tax returns – proportion of pre-filled data items accepted without change

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  • Availability – key digital systems availability

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  • Budget – ATO manages its operating budget to balance
  • Cost of collection – cost to collect $100

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Reducing unnecessary or inefficient regulation

We are guided by three principles that underpin the Government’s expectations for the performance of Commonwealth regulators and demonstrate our commitment to reducing unnecessary or inefficient regulation.

Table 1: Principles

Principles of regulator best practice

Continuous improvement and building trust

Regulators adopt a whole-of-system perspective, continuously improving their performance, capability and culture to build trust and confidence in Australia’s regulatory settings.

Risk-based and data-driven

Regulators manage risks proportionately and maintain essential safeguards while minimising regulatory burden, and leveraging data and digital technology to support those they regulate to comply and grow.

Collaboration and engagement

Regulators are transparent and responsive communicators, implementing regulations in a modern and collaborative way.