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Ripple performance smartphone app

RippleWhen does a ripple become a wave? Early findings from the Ripple trialRipple is a smartphone app designed to explore what the drivers of performance mean for yo, your agency colleagues and the APS. A pilot to test Ripple ran from 22 August until 9 December 2016, with results from the trial currently under review.1 question a day16 weeks31 agencies20 performance driversI can honestly say it has improved my performance as a leader along the way. Participant, Australian Taxation Office78 questions2500 randomly selected EL1 employees78432 answersIt's an innovative way to connect the APS and grow current reflections on leadership, leading the work we do and the way we do the work. Participant, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade70% would use Ripple again and would recommend it to others.90% found it beneficial to compare their data with others (internal and external to their agency)51% gave Ripple credit for helping them to make adjustments at workI can say that my team are having a great time each day providing feedback for the answers I post. It has generated a number of discussions. Participant, Department of Immigration and Border Protection

Ever wondered what drives you in the workplace? What about your friends and colleagues? How does your employer compare to others across the APS? Curious why some managers make their teams hum, while others can't even get people to turn up? Do you know your performance strengths? Want to get better at your job?

The Australian Public Service Commission's new smartphone app Ripple will help you better understand these issues.

The pilot

The pilot for Ripple started in August this year and has now come to a close. A special mention to the 2,000 randomly selected APS employees spread across 30 APS agencies who put their hand up to test our first performance smartphone app. It's the first time the Commission has ever trialled something like this.

We're delighted to have had over 1,000 employees answer a question every day about performance issues with 1,400 employees answering 75 per cent or more of the questions.

Next steps - Evaluation

The evaluation phase will be critical to getting the best out of Ripple, We want to work closely with our pilot users and explore the why, what and how before any broader rollout. Our plan over the next six months is to:

  • meet with participants and their colleagues to get a better picture of their Ripple journey
  • analyse the information collected and pull together a snapshot summary for release in early 2017
  • review user feedback and make app iterations before any broader rollout - this includes preparing a version for Android users

We will be regularly updating the website, check back for key Ripple highlights in the new year.

What is Ripple?

Ripple is a conversation starter. The concept is simple: one question a day on performance issues delivered to your smartphone, with accumulative APS-wide results available immediately. It'll help you think through what's important to you about your job, and may even make you better at it. It's a simple approach to a complex topic that's built on the idea that a productive dialogue begins with a good question.

Individual workplace performance has a mixed history in the APS, partly because of the complex and varied nature of the work we do in government. Over the years, APS agencies have tried all manner of things to measure, promote and manage performance, with varying degrees of success.

The vast majority of people want to do well at their jobs, and Ripple is a fresh approach to helping people succeed in that aspiration. It's designed to fit in around your daily work routine, and should be a pleasure to use.

Your privacy

All user data within Ripple is confidential. Considerable effort has been made to safeguard the identity of users and the data they provide through Ripple.

Aggregated quantitative data and de-identified comment data may be provided to agencies to inform internal management decisions and may be used for research purposes in the future. Any data that allows individuals to be identified will not be released.

As an APS employee, you have obligations under the Public Service Act 1999 to uphold the APS Values and behave in accordance with the APS Code of Conduct. This applies to the use of Ripple, even though all use is confidential. Generally speaking, in Ripple as in life, be respectful and play nice.

Want to talk about it?

The Ripple Team is keen to nurture a community of interest around the app, and welcomes all input. If you have a question or comment about Ripple, please email ripple [at] apsc.gov.au.