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APS Agencies – size and function

Australian Public Service (APS) agencies are grouped into categories or ‘functional clusters’ to allow comparisons to be made between agencies with similar primary functions. The five functional clusters applied to APS agencies are as follows:

  • Policy: organisations involved in the development of public policy.
  • Smaller operational: organisations with less than 1,000 employees involved in the implementation of public policy.
  • Larger operational: organisations with 1,000 employees or more involved in the implementation of public policy.
  • Regulatory: organisations involved in regulation and inspection.
  • Specialist: organisations providing specialist support to government.

Micro Agency (Less than 20 employees)

Agency Function
Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Policy
Australian Law Reform Commission Specialist
Climate Change Authority Specialist
National Mental Health Commission Specialist
Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Specialist
Professional Services Review Scheme Specialist
Screen Australia Specialist

Extra Small Agency (20-100 employees)

Agency Function
Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research Specialist
Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity Specialist
Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care Specialist
Australian Institute of Family Studies Specialist
Australian Office of Financial Management Specialist
Cancer Australia Specialist
Commonwealth Grants Commission Specialist
Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Specialist
Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House Specialist
National Blood Authority Specialist
National Capital Authority Specialist
National Health Funding Body Specialist
National Portrait Gallery of Australia Specialist
Office of the Australian Information Commissioner Regulatory
Office of the Inspector-General of Taxation Specialist
Organ and Tissue Authority Specialist
Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Regulatory
Workplace Gender Equality Agency Specialist

Small Agency (101-250 employees)

Agency Function
Australian Aged Care Quality Agency Regulatory
Australian Building and Construction Commission Regulatory
Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Regulatory
Australian Fisheries Management Authority Regulatory
Australian Human Rights Commission Specialist
Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Specialist
Australian National Maritime Museum Specialist
Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority Regulatory
Australian Public Service Commission Policy
Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency Specialist
Australian Research Council Specialist
Australian Skills Quality Authority Regulatory
Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority Regulatory
Australian Transport Safety Bureau Smaller operational
Digital Transformation Agency Smaller Operational
Food Standards Australia New Zealand Regulatory
Future Fund Management Agency Specialist
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Specialist
National Film and Sound Archive of Australia Specialist
National Health and Medical Research Council Specialist
National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority Regulatory
Office of National Assessments Specialist
Office of Parliamentary Counsel Specialist
Office of the Commonwealth Ombudsman Specialist
Productivity Commission Specialist
Royal Australian Mint Specialist
Safe Work Australia Policy
Torres Strait Regional Authority Specialist

Medium Agency (251-1000 employees)

Agency Function
Aboriginal Hostels Limited Smaller operational
Administrative Appeals Tribunal Smaller operational
Australian Communications and Media Authority Regulatory
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Regulatory
Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission Specialist
Australian Electoral Commission Smaller operational
Australian Financial Security Authority Smaller operational
Australian Institute of Health and Welfare Specialist
Australian National Audit Office Specialist
Australian Sports Commission Smaller operational
Australian Trade and Investment Commission Specialist
Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre Regulatory
Australian War Memorial Specialist
Clean Energy Regulator Regulatory
Comcare Smaller operational
Defence Housing Australia Smaller operational
Department of Communications and the Arts Policy
Department of Parliamentary Services Specialist
Department of the Treasury Policy
Fair Work Commission Smaller operational
Geoscience Australia Specialist
Murray-Darling Basin Authority Policy
National Archives of Australia Specialist
National Library of Australia Specialist
National Museum of Australia Specialist
Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions Smaller Operational
Office of the Fair Work Ombudsman Regulatory

Large Agency (1001-10,000 employees)

Agency Function
Attorney-General’s Department Policy
Australian Bureau of Statistics Specialist
Australian Securities and Investments Commission Regulatory
Bureau of Meteorology Larger operational
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources Larger operational
Department of Education and Training Policy
Department of the Environment and Energy Policy
Department of Finance Policy
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Policy
Department of Health Policy
Department of Industry, Innovation and Science Policy
Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities Policy
Department of Jobs and Small Business Policy
Department of Social Services Policy
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Policy
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Larger operational
Federal Court of Australia Larger operational
IP Australia Larger operational
National Disability Insurance Agency Larger operational

Extra Large Agency (More than 10,000 employees)

Agency Function
Australian Taxation Office Larger operational
Department of Defence Larger operational
Department of Home Affairs Larger operational
Department of Human Services Larger operational
Last reviewed: 
24 August 2018