State Of The Service Report 2009

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26th November 2009, 04:29pm - Views: 698

People Feature Australian Public Service Commission 1 image


16 Furzer Street, Phillip ACT 2606, Australia


Issued   26 November 2009

Under embargo until 6pm 26 November 2009

State of the Service Report 2009— Meeting the challenges of the 21st century

This year’s State of the Service report provides valuable insight into the capacity of the

Australian Public Service to meet the challenges facing Australia in the 21st Century.  This

assessment is particularly important in light of the APS reform blueprint that is being

developed and will be available by early 2010.

Ms Carmel McGregor, Acting Commissioner of the Australian Public Service Commission,

announced that “this is the twelfth State of the Service report and its findings indicate that the

Australian Public Service is strong and ready to meet the challenges of reform. We know this

because our research shows:

high levels of staff commitment with 87% of staff being highly motivated and

reporting consistently high levels of job satisfaction—around 80% in the past 3 years;

strong motivation and commitment from SES staff in particular—97% of SES staff

said they were highly motivated, and 92% reported positive satisfaction with their


a continuing trend of a more educated workforce with 68.1% of ongoing staff engaged

during 2008–09 having graduate qualifications, up from 61.9% the previous year;

very high levels of awareness and confidence in applying APS Values and Codes of

Conduct—72% of employees agreeing that their agency operates with a high level of


a strong desire for staff to work positively across organisational boundaries and

increasing recognition of the value of new technologies to facilitate organisational

collaboration; and

increasing discipline by agencies in the constrained budget environment with a

significant slowing in the growth of APS employment. Total APS employment rose by

1.4% in 2008–09, compared with previous years’ growth of 6.3% in 2006–07 and

2.8% in 2007–08. Growth was concentrated in agencies whose work was directly

linked to addressing economic and other contemporary challenges, such as Centrelink

and the Department of Climate Change. 

Despite these positive outcomes, the report also outlines areas where improvement will better

position the APS to meet the policy and service delivery challenges facing the Service over

the next few years”, Ms McGregor said


Reflecting on low levels of participation of Indigenous Australians and those with disability in

APS employment, Ms McGregor said that we need to work hard to ensure that the APS is as

diverse as the population it serves. While the representation of Indigenous employees remains

constant at 2.1% in 2009, the proportion of employees with disability fell to 3.0% from 3.2%

last year.

“Other challenges include moving to more proactive workforce strategies in agencies and

across the APS, to better manage talent and succession.  Further developing our leaders will

also be important for improving APS performance and employee engagement.” 

The complex and strategic challenges facing Australia today also require the removal of

impediments to the APS working effectively across organisational boundaries, and engaging

more strongly with our citizens.  “It is promising that 26 APS agencies reported using new

social media tools to support this dialogue during 2009” said Ms McGregor.

“Overall, this year’s State of the Service Report shows that we have a strong and healthy

foundation for future reform of the Australian Public Service” said Ms McGregor.

Copies of the State of the Service Report 200809 are available on the Australian Public

Service Commission’s website: <>.

Contact Officer: Nicole Pietrucha

Group Manager, Research and Evaluation 

Tel: 02 6202 3707 or E-mail:

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