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Understanding and responding to changes in our operating environment over the period of this corporate plan will influence our focus in supporting and positioning the APS workforce for the future.

Operating environment

Our operating environment has been shaped by the current period of uncertainty, encompassing the recovery from natural disasters and the outbreak of a pandemic and an economic crisis. Coupled with this, the APS must tackle increasingly interconnected, complex policy problems and engage with rapid advances in technology, data and automation, alongside societal change and geopolitical volatility.

The Government’s APS reform agenda Delivering for Australians set clear expectations about the transformational change demanded of the APS to ensure we are a cohesive enterprise, fit for purpose in this environment. As the central agency with responsibility for the APS workforce and its people, the Commission has a role in delivering this reform agenda and in ensuring the APS is prepared for these challenges.

Our operating environment has rapidly accelerated reform. We have driven a strong and united focus for the APS on delivering the best outcomes for Australians. Our role in ensuring the continued professionalism, integrity and capability of the APS remains key.

We will work to build capability and prepare the APS workforce to support Australia’s recovery, embedding the lessons learned to deliver Government priorities. We will continue to collaborate within and outside the APS and build an APS workforce that is more mobile, adaptive and diverse, maximising the opportunities that remote working can provide, while managing ongoing productivity.

We will also facilitate the Government’s agenda to support the Pacific region, through our international relationships. The APS is seen as an exemplar of the effective and efficient delivery of public services. Countries in our region look to us for information that can assist them to improve their own public sectors. Our engagement with counterpart agencies builds Australia’s regional relationships and enhances the reputation of the APS.

Financial position

The Commission operates within the Commonwealth Financial Framework as set out in the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013. The Commission operates in a tight fiscal environment, receiving approximately 75 per cent of resources through government appropriation and the remaining 25 per cent, mostly from government agencies, on a fee-for-service basis.


Our primary stakeholders include the Government and ministers, APS secretaries and agency heads, and APS employees.