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Commissioner's Foreward 

‘Our purpose is to position the APS workforce for the future.’

As the accountable authority of the Australian Public Service Commission, I am pleased to present our 2019–20 corporate plan, covering the period 2019–23, as required under paragraph 35(1)(b) of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013.

This plan outlines our priorities for the year ahead, in the context of our longer-term strategic direction through to 2023 and beyond.

This is a time of significant change for the APS, digitalisation is accelerating and data generation is occurring on a massive scale. We are working in a complex global socio-political environment, and confronting a competitive employment marketplace for talent and critical skills. We need to be more joined-up, collaborative and citizen-facing.

The Prime Minister has set down clear expectations for the APS with a focus on implementation and delivery for the benefit of all Australians. The Independent Review of the Australian Public Service will also be pivotal to the Government setting out its priorities for change to support the move to becoming a trusted APS, united in serving all Australians.

This rapidly changing environment does not change our role. But it will significantly influence our work and focus in the coming years, with our ability to change and respond being essential to our long-term success.

We will work to be a valued, credible and trusted partner to the APS—helping to ensure the professionalism, integrity and effectiveness of the APS now and into the future.

We will work across the APS to develop opportunities to improve productivity and efficiency. We will focus on making a practical difference to the current and future effectiveness of the APS, to best serve the people of Australia. We will continue to use our unique position to promote, support and reflect the diversity of the APS and to exemplify public service, demonstrating impeccable stewardship and integrity, and skilfully leading reform. We will work with our stakeholders to shape the APS workforce, modernise the APS employment framework, build workforce capability, and promote a high standard of integrity. We will continue to be a voice for the service, within the APS, across Australia and internationally.

I am proud of the work we do. We have a strong foundation, and a professional and talented group of people who are committed to achieving our purpose of positioning the APS for the future.

Peter Woolcott AO

Australian Public Service Commissioner

21 August 2019


Our Purpose

Our purpose is to position the APS workforce for the future to ensure it meets the demands and expectations of the Australian Government and people.

Our Approach

To work collaboratively and openly as a valued, credible and trusted partner to the APS.

Our Role

The Australian Public Service Commission is a non-corporate Commonwealth entity within the Prime Minister and Cabinet portfolio.

Our statutory responsibilities are detailed in the Public Service Act 1999 and include:

  • strengthening the professionalism of the APS, and driving continuous improvement in workforce management so the APS is ready for future demands
  • promoting high standards of accountability, effectiveness, performance, integrity and conduct in the APS
  • fostering and contributing to leadership, high quality learning and development and career management in the APS
  • fostering an APS workforce that reflects the diversity of the Australian population
  • providing advice and assistance to agencies on public service matters, and partnering with secretaries in stewardship of the APS.

We support two statutory office holders, the Australian Public Service Commissioner and the Merit Protection Commissioner, as well as providing policy and secretariat support to the Remuneration Tribunal and the Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal.

Our Value Add

  • Adviser—Through information, relationships, services and counsel, we support and strengthen the APS.
  • Steward—We are the voice of the APS, using evidence to speak with insight and providing stewardship.
  • Innovator—We experiment, synthesise and share emerging solutions to tomorrow’s challenges and opportunities.

Our Outcome

Our intended outcome is to help maintain the APS at the forefront of best practice public administration, and to do this through high quality advice and the provision of outstanding service to the APS and the Government.

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