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Machinery of Government changes: A guide

Key message

A MoG change can lead to the movement of a Commonwealth function from an agency that is an Australian Public Service (APS) agency operating under the Public Service Act 1999 to a Commonwealth agency that is not an APS agency and operates under different legislation.

1. Agencies are expected to implement change in a way that is consistent with the principles outlined in the Executive Summary.

2. This page provides additional information for agencies where functions, staff and/or resources are moved from an APS agency to a non-APS Commonwealth agency.

Movement of people

Legislative basis

3. Section 72(1)(b) of the Public Service Act 1999 (PS Act) gives the Australian Public Service Commissioner (the Commissioner) the authority to move an Australian Public Service (APS) employee to an agency that is not an APS agency. See People Management.

4. Agencies are advised to consider whether any additional legislation is needed to facilitate the movement of staff out of the APS, for example, in specific legislation concerning the move.

Terms and Conditions

5. Where an employee from an APS agency moves to a non- APS Commonwealth agency, the employee is entitled to have their pay and conditions maintained until the next amendment to the relevant industrial award or instrument [PS Acts 72(3)]. See Pay and Conditions.

Returning to the APS

6. Generally, employees who have moved out of the APS as the result of a Machinery of Government (MoG) change cannot apply for positions in the APS that are advertised as available to APS employees only.  Exceptions include:

  • employees who are moved to an agency operating under the Parliamentary Service Act 1999—these employees are able to re-enter the APS under mobility provisions in the Public Service Act 1999. See Movement between the Parliamentary Service and the APS
  • through provisions included in enabling legislation for the gaining agency.

7. Agencies are advised that any arrangements to facilitate the re-entry of former APS employees are rare. Agencies should contact the APSC as soon as possible if this is being considered.

Excess staff

8. Where the gaining agency indicates that it will require fewer staff to perform the function that is moved, the management of excess staff will be part of negotiations between the agencies . Excess employees need to be identified as early as possible.

9. To maximise excess employees' opportunity to find work in the APS it may be appropriate to facilitate redeployment to other APS agencies before the administration of the MoG change is completed.

Governance and Financial Management

10. For governance arrangements, please email Governance.Policy [at] finance.gov.au.

11. For funding arrangements, please email annual.appropriations [at] finance.gov.au.

12. For banking arrangements, please email banking.policy [at] finance.gov.au.

13. For financial reporting arrangements, please email accountingpolicy [at] finance.gov.au.