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Section B : People and workplace management and accountability

In Part 2: Overview of the department we introduced our organisation, our people and our values. This section provides an assessment of the performance of our underpinning people and workplace management and accountability systems.

To enable the department to achieve its business objectives and outcomes and to be a high performing organisation that is a great place to work, we seek to achieve our strategic people objective, that is:

A capable, committed and productive workforce

We seek to be a workplace where our people:

  • understand their roles and responsibilities, and how their work contributes to the overall objectives of the organisation
  • feel challenged, have meaningful work and enjoy it, and are able to realise their potential in the workplace
  • feel respected, are rewarded and recognised for their efforts, and are treated decently.

A major part of our performance measurement activity has been our involvement in a cross-agency audit by the ANAO on Managing People for Business Outcomes (Audit Report No. 50). This was conducted as a benchmarking study into people management in the APS and reviewed the effectiveness and efficiency of people management and human resources management in agencies. The study examined how line managers plan for and manage their staff to help achieve agency and programme outcomes, and how the human resources function supports people management practices to achieve agency outcomes.

As a second year participant in the ANAO study, the department recognises the ongoing value of benchmarking against other APS agencies and considers this an opportunity to improve the department's performance and people management. In response to recommendations put forward by the ANAO and in line with results from the People and Workplace Survey, we established three people management task forces charged with identifying strategies for people management improvement. We anticipate that this will be an ongoing process and we expect to implement other strategies during the coming year.

Our central people and workplace governance committee is the People Management Committee (PMC). During 2002-03 an important part of its role has been to manage the work of task forces involved in performance management and rewards and recognition, learning and development and recruitment and selection. In addition to specific matters relating to these operational policies and processes, the PMC considered:

  • issues in relation to organisational development that impact on the organisation's climate and the 'style' in which people work together to improve organisational effectiveness
  • processes involved in shaping the workforce to ensure it is capable of delivering organisational objectives.

We measure and report our people and workplace performance in various ways:

  • monthly reporting on key human resource and people and management indicators
  • the biannual people and workplace survey
  • annual evaluation for our Investors in People accreditation
  • participation in the ANAO cross-agency benchmarking study on people management in the APS over three years
  • in other cross agency evaluations such as in the Values in Agencies work, undertaken by the Australian Public Service Commission.

Survey results, human resources data and recommendations from these inform managers and staff of our people and workplace performance.

The report on people and workplace performance, incorporating human resource management practices and results, is presented through a framework (Figure 2 p. 135) which represents the people management processes and systems in place during 2002-03.

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