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What does this tell us about the state of the service

Change management is a key organisational capability, yet less than one-quarter of agencies covered by the 2013 agency survey believed their change management capability was at the desired level. Indeed, change management was rated the second lowest of the eight capabilities that agencies were asked to assess. An assessment of the published Capability Reviews confirms this finding.

Additionally, employee perceptions of change management capability in their agencies, while improving, indicate there is still work to be done. Results from the employee census suggest that employee perceptions of how well change is managed in their agencies may have a small buffering or moderating effect on the experience of change and its potentially negative impact on employee engagement and intention to leave.

Work is underway within agencies to improve their change management capability, with the majority of agencies reporting they took action in 2013–14 to improve this capability. Barriers identified by agencies to improving change management internally can be broadly categorised as relating to the volume of change in the past 12 months and difficulties in developing the skills and expertise of employees to manage change. Learning and development packages, such as those designed by the Core Skills Project, should go some way to addressing this need and represent a concrete step toward building change management capability in the APS.

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