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Reporting by function

The Office of the Merit Protection Commissioner’s ‘Corporate Statement and Priorities for 2016–17’ is published on the Commissioner’s website. The statement identifies two functions for the Office:

  • to review APS employment-related decisions
  • to provide a range of fee-related services to the APS and other jurisdictions.

There is qualitative evidence that the Office of the Merit Protection Commissioner is well regarded and is having a positive impact on agency employment decision-making.

Table M1 sets out the Office’s performance against its goals for 2016–17. More specific performance information is provided in the next two sections of this report.

Table M1: Office of the Merit Protection Commissioner—goals and achievements, 2016–17

Goals and statement of outcomes

2016–17 audit of achievements

1. Improve agency people management performance by sharing OMPC information and observations.

We have made a difference when:

  • when our input is actively sought on how to improve agency performance.

Information published on the website, including case summaries

Contributed to the Australian National Audit Office audit of the management of underperformance

Presentations to the Australian Government Leadership Network, SES orientations, APS Code of Conduct practitioners forum and other APSC programs

Review of two agencies’ misconduct and performance management procedures and policies

Regular feedback to agencies through review and Code of Conduct decisions and discussions with senior managers

Mentored senior staff in five agencies.

2. Contribute to public service-wide understanding and awareness of integrity risks within review and employment frameworks.

We have made a difference when:

  • our observations and input are specifically requested across jurisdictions.

Information published on the website, including case summaries

Feedback to the Commission on policy issues arising from review casework

Participation in the Integrity Agencies Group, including dialogue with individual agencies

Participation in OECD integrity forums

Presentation to China Australia Dialogue on Public Administration Workshop in Hong Kong

Hosted Indonesian secondment and addressed three other international delegations.

3. Progress legislative amendments to enhance the flexibility and efficiency of OMPC and agency functions.

We have made a difference when:

  • our legislative framework reflects the requirements of a merit-based modern public service.

Communication with other jurisdictions, including Canada and Ireland, on best practice models for providing review and assurance services

Contributed to discussion on changes to the Commissioner’s Directions and sought changes to the PS Regulations.

4. Assist clients to interact with us more effectively by building on and maintaining our Clear Communications and website initiatives.

We have made a difference when:

  • feedback on our communication through multiple forums is positive
  • our clients understand our role and how we can assist.

Major update of the website and continual refreshing

Newsletters and information sheets distributed

Facebook account established and shared

Updated and conducted client feedback survey

Project to examine the use made of case studies by agencies and ways of presenting to suit audience needs.

5. Promote internal gains in productivity, quality and timeliness of reviews and apply technological solutions where appropriate.

We have made a difference when:

  • we consistently meet reasonable standards of timeliness and quality for demand-led reviews.

Target timeframes met

Trialled electronic lodgment of review applications with an agency

Refreshed panels for MPC and agency nominees on committees

Implemented flexibility initiatives such as job-sharing and working from home

Promoted mental health awareness and developed resilience surveys within the Office

Training of new staff and upskilling of existing staff

Review of case management system upgrade in progress.