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8. Capability Review ratings

Capability Reviews are forward-looking, whole-of-agency reviews that assess the ability of agencies to meet future objectives and challenges. Capability Reviews focus on leadership, strategy and delivery capabilities.

Table A8.1 summarises the ratings from the 22 Capability Reviews conducted to date. Ratings are applied at the whole-of-agency level against each of the 10 elements of capability that are assessed during a review.

Each element is rated against a four-point scale that takes into account the type of capability, the current and desired levels of capability and the timeframe for capability lift. A strong rating is applied where an agency demonstrates outstanding capability for future delivery in line with the model of capability. A well placed rating indicates that capability gaps are identified and defined and improvements are already being made to address these gaps. Development area ratings are applied when a Capability Review finds weaknesses in capability that requires further action to deliver improvements over the medium term. A serious concern rating indicates a significant weakness in capability that requires urgent action.

As part of the process, agencies conduct a self-assessment against the model which can later be compared to the findings of the senior review team. In the majority of cases, overall ratings do not differ by more than one or two rating levels (with agencies typically rating themselves as slightly more capable than independent review). Recognising that issues exist, however, is just the first step and were it not for some reviews and subsequent action planning processes, it is unlikely strategies would have been put in place to address known development needs. Feedback from one agency head highlighted how the Capability Review process helped their agency address long-standing issues. On other occasions, there were considerable differences between internal and external capability assessments which serve to reinforce the importance of an external lens and strong change capability to underpin an agency's response.

Table A8.1. Capability Review ratings
Element of capability Ratings
Strong Well placed Development area Serious concern
Source: Capability Review programme
Set direction 11 10 1
Motivate people 3 12 6 1
Develop people 7 13 2
Outcome-focused strategy 4 16 2
Evidence-based choices 3 13 6
Collaborate and build common purpose 11 11
Innovative delivery 3 12 7
Plan, resource and prioritise 2 7 11 2
Shared commitment and sound delivery models 1 10 10 1
Manage performance 1 7 13 1

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