Employment of ACT Public Service employees as APS employees

Last updated: 16 Dec 2016

This page is: current

Applying for APS jobs

ACT Public Service (ACTPS) employees who wish to join the Australian Public Service (APS) are required to apply for vacancies in APS agencies.

An ACTPS employee who is selected on merit for a job in an APS agency may be engaged as an APS employee under section 22 of the Public Service Act 1999 (the Act).

Portability of leave

Section 25 of the (Commonwealth) Australian Capital Territory Government Service (Consequential Provisions) Act 1994 provides that where an ACTPS employee is engaged as an APS employee, the recreation leave entitlement that an ACTPS employee has on cessation of their employment with the ACTPS is to be carried over to the APS.

APS workplace arrangements, such as enterprise agreements, determinations under subsection 24(1) of the Act and common law agreements, generally provide for the portability of accrued annual leave between the ACTPS and the APS. Workplace arrangements generally also provide for the portability of personal/carer's leave between the ACTPS and the APS.

The treatment of prior ACTPS service for long service leave purposes in the APS is governed by the Long Service Leave (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1976.

Individuals with specific enquiries about leave entitlements should contact their human resources or corporate area.

Service for redundancy purposes

Agency enterprise agreements or other workplace arrangements typically set out the type of service that may be counted when calculating the redundancy entitlements of non-SES employees who are excess to requirements in the APS.

Subject to any specific arrangements that are set out in an agency's enterprise agreement, generally only continuous Commonwealth service may be counted, which would exclude service with the ACTPS.

An exception applies to persons who were compulsorily transferred to the ACTPS on its establishment as a separate Service on 1 July 1994 and who subsequently rejoin the APS. In these circumstances, the following periods will generally all count as service for redundancy pay purposes, provided the continuity provisions set out in agency arrangements are satisfied:

  • APS service prior to 1994
  • ACTPS service between 1 July 1994 and the person's subsequent engagement as an APS employee, and
  • the current period of APS service.

For other persons who join the APS from the ACTPS, or who move from the APS to the ACTPS and then rejoin the APS, the period of ACTPS service will generally not count for, or will break continuity for, the purposes of calculating a person's redundancy entitlement in the APS. In other words, only the most recent period of APS service will count.

The ACTPS formerly had arrangements in place whereby it could authorise a payment to an APS employee who had prior ACTPS service and who was made redundant by their APS agency. These arrangements ceased with effect from 10 June 2009.

Advice on the arrangements applying to APS employees seeking to join the ACTPS should be obtained from the ACTPS.


  • Public Service Act 1999, section 22
  • Australian Capital Territory Government Service (Consequential Provisions) Act 1994, section 25