- Title page
- Operating Environment
- State Services Development Goals
- Capability of the State Services Commission
- Leadership and coordination
- State Services Commission interventions and the development goals
- Implementation and milestones
- Other business
- Financial statements
- Glossary of terms
State Services Commission interventions and the development goals
This Statement of Intent begins the process of adjusting our work to better address the Development Goals. To this end below we:
- categorise our existing interventions according to which Development Goal they primarily contribute to
- indicate our current thinking about the ways in which our interventions will need to develop in order to better advance each Development Goal.
This gives us a basis for more rigorously reviewing current interventions over the next year so that we can identify where we should stop or modify current work, or start new actions.
However, it should be noted that the Development Goals are not intended to give a complete picture of the work of the SSC. There will be the ongoing requirement to appoint Public Service chief executives and manage their performance, conduct investigations, and provide guidance and advice. All of these tasks will need to be delivered to a very high standard. However, the Development Goals will affect how we perform these functions, and the reasons why we carry them out. That is, the Development Goals will provide the focus around which SSC activities change, develop, and improve.
Some core SSC interventions will contribute to all the Development Goals. These include those interventions concerned with performance management of Public Service chief executives, chief executive appointments, and strategic advice on performance.
The Government cannot afford to be a bad employer. A bad employer burns out the goodwill required to achieve results for New Zealanders. A good employer provides a satisfying workplace where people are prepared to take risks and get the job done. A good workplace attracts and retains the best staff.
Current SSC actions that contribute to this goal are in the areas of Good Employer and Equal Employment Opportunities (EEO), Employment Relations, and chief executive human resource services. The State Sector Retirement Savings Scheme, and the Mainstream Programme, are also relevant to this goal.
Our Good Employer and EEO interventions will develop as we implement our role in relation to the Government's Pay and Employment Equity Plan of Action. This aims to ensure that any unjustified disparities between men and women in terms of pay and employment are identified and remedied over time. Our role in this area will encompass the coordination and facilitation of pay and employment equity audits throughout the Public Service. The SSC will conduct an audit internally in the 2005/06 year.
However, under this goal the most change will occur as we develop the Human Resources Framework, which provides a more coordinated approach to human resource development. This becomes a more comprehensive Employer of Choice Framework. The current components of our Human Resources Framework are valuable as a means of identifying some useful features of good employment practice. However, they tend to appeal to human resources practitioners, when the real target is current, and potential, employees, and, in particular, high performers. We will aim for an Employer of Choice Framework that will make it easier for any State servant to see how they could contribute in a variety of agencies, and how they will be treated. The easier that it is to see how one's present job contributes and fits into a State Services concept, then the easier it will be for high performers to maximise their contribution by finding their best fit within the State Services.
The amendments to the State Sector Act allows the State Services Commissioner to take an interest in the development of potential leaders across the State Services. The first steps are in place with the refocusing of the Leadership Development Centre (LDC) to provide senior leadership and management development in the Public Service, and the continued work of the Public Sector Training Organisation (PSTO) to coordinate a range of learning opportunities. There is now an opportunity to renew and reinvigorate our commitment to training and development across all parts of the public sector. The challenges faced in a range of public sector organisations (including local government) are very similar. The best staff for State Services organisations are likely to come from a wide range of public sector agencies, and the best possible development of public sector workers is potentially valuable for the future capability of the State Services.
In the period since the State Sector Act was introduced, there has been a good focus on training many public servants in skills required to achieve the goals of their department. The development of wider public sector skills, however, has proved to need a broader focus. The establishment of the Victoria University of Wellington School of Government, and the Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG) are the beginning of a response to this need. We will develop a culture of excellence across the New Zealand public sector, and work to foster the development of centres of excellence in public sector learning within the schools of government.
Current SSC actions are e-government development and operations, and the monitoring of major information technology projects. The e-government goals have always been expressed as a transformation programme. They also focus on the way in which the State and its various agencies interact with New Zealanders. The e-government goals have anticipated the thinking that has developed more broadly across State sector management, and is now expressed in the other Development Goals. Consequently, the e-government work programme continues as the means of giving effect to this development goal.
Many current SSC actions contribute to this goal already. This includes the strategic analysis of departments, capability reviews, and strategic advice on State sector performance.
Our actions in relation to this goal will expand with the roll-out of the State Sector Amendment Act 2004 and the Crown Entities Act 2004.
The interventions to date under the aegis of the Managing for Outcomes Programme will require development so that they more effectively encourage managing for shared or joint outcomes, and extend this across the State Services. It has always been envisaged that joint outcomes would develop between departments and agencies, but so far this has been unusual. Consequently, there has also been little formal development planning between agencies. These goals will require the identification and pursuit of joint outcomes (where sensible) with all the resource management implications that would follow. As with the rest of the Managing for Outcomes Programme, the achievement of this goal will require active leadership from all the central agencies.
In the period since the State Sector Act took effect in 1998, and prior to that, the location and delivery of government services has generally been treated on a case-by-case basis with individual agencies making separate decisions on the delivery of services. This development goal is not intended to change the fundamental responsibility and accountability in present arrangements. It is, however, intended that agencies will work together far more closely to ensure that services received by New Zealanders respond to their needs effectively. The more recent changes, brought about in the context of the Review of the Centre, have improved the way in which agencies work together. Existing SSC actions in relation to the strategic analysis of departments and capability reviews also support this goal.
Work on this goal will focus initially on access to services. To lead the progress towards this goal the SSC will need to understand much better the factors affecting access as seen from the point of New Zealanders. The goal is focused on the collaboration between, and inter-relationships of, agencies in relation to access and is therefore a significant new direction for the New Zealand State Services. As such it requires a cultural and behavioural change. It is likely to be an area in which the Advisory Committee on the State Services becomes a medium for designing and implementing new interventions which enhance the inter-connections between agencies.
This has always been fundamental to our role. The promotion of the highest standards of behaviour in a politically neutral Public Service is a defining function for the State Services Commissioner. Current SSC actions that support this goal are strategic analysis of departments, capability reviews, ad hoc reviews, the Integrity and Conduct Programme, and advice to Boards of Crown Entities and Statutory Bodies.
Interventions arising from the extended mandate of the State Services Commissioner will be important to achieving this goal. The achievement of milestones under the first five Goals will contribute to the goal in increased trust in the State Services.