Diversity

Ethnicity

Emerging trends in ethnicity identified in the 2007 HRC survey have continued to show through in the 2008 data. The Asian ethnic group continued to grow at the fastest rate, increasing to 6.9% of the Public Service workforce. If current trends continue, the Asian ethnic group will overtake Pacific peoples as the third largest ethnic group in the Public Service by 2011. The proportion of people in the combined Middle Eastern, Latin American, and African ethnic group increased by 0.2 percentage points as did the proportion of Pacific people.

In contrast to the growth in the smaller ethnic groups, the proportion of Māori public servants has remained static over the past three years, declining slightly from 16.8% in 2007 to 16.7% in 2008. The European ethnic group continued to decrease, with 72.5% of Public Servants identifying themselves as European (down from 77.5% in 2003).

Table 12. Representation of ethnic groups 20 in the Public Service, 2003-2008

 

2003

(%)

2004

(%)

2005

(%)

2006

(%)

2007

(%)

2008

(%)

2006 Census 21

(%)

Māori

17.6

17.4

17.5

16.7

16.8

16.7

11.4

Pacific peoples

7.1

7.1

7.3

7.4

7.6

7.8

4.9

Asian peoples

4.2

4.7

5.4

5.9

6.5

6.9

8.0

European (including New Zealand European) 22

77.5

76.1

75.7

74.3

73.1

72.5

69.3

Middle Eastern, Latin American, African

0.3

0.4

0.4

0.5

0.7

0.9

0.7

Other Ethnic Group (includes New Zealander from 2006)

1.2

1.4

1.2

3.5

3.5

3.4

13.3

Women in the Public Service

Women comprise a higher proportion of the Public Service than of the labour force as a whole, at 59.0% as at 30 June 2008 (59.2% in 2007). The type of work in the Public Service may explain this high representation as many Public Service occupations (such social worker, case worker and clerical staff) have high representation of women in the labour market. Appendix 2 shows the percentage of women in each department.

The age profile of Men and Women in the Public Service differs. The average age of women as at 30 June 2008 was 41.9 years, whereas the average age of men was 44.1 years. A higher proportion of women (17.9%) were aged 20-29 years compared with men (13.3%).

Diversity in senior management

The table below shows the proportion of women, Māori, Pacific, and Asian people in senior management (Tier 1, 2, and 3). The proportion of women in the top three tiers of management increased from 37.8% to 38.3%. The proportion of Māori, Pacific, and Asian senior managers all decreased between 2007 and 2008.

Diversity in senior management, 2003-2008

 

2003

(%)

2004

(%)

2005

(%)

2006

(%)

2007

(%)

2008

(%)

Public Service Workforce (%)

Women

35.1

36.2

35.6

37.7

37.8

38.3

59.0

Māori

10.3

10.1

8.3

8.2

9.1

9.0

16.7

Pacific peoples

1.4

1.3

1.7

1.7

1.7

1.3

7.8

Asian peoples

1.4

1.3

1.5

1.6

1.5

1.4

6.9

Age Profile

Figure 4 shows that the Public Service age distribution varies noticeably from that of the employed labour force. Fewer Public Service employees are younger than 25 years old, and the Public Service workforce is heavily concentrated in the 35 to 55 year age range.

Figure 4. Age profile of the Public Service and the Employed Labour Force 23

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While the Public Service has a higher average age than the employed labour force, both workforces have been aging at the same rate. Over the five years to 30 June 2008, the average age of both the Public Service and the employed labour force increased by 11 months to 42.8 years and 40.9 years respectively.

20 Ethnicity is recorded and reported based on the Statistics New Zealand "Statistical Standard for Ethnicity 2005". People recording more than one ethnic group are counted multiple times. Percentages in Table 12 are of those with a known ethnicity.

21 Source: Census 2006, Statistics New Zealand. This column represents the ethnic diversity of the employed usual resident population aged 15 and over.

22 Previously reported figures in the combined New Zealand European and Non-New Zealand European group have been revised.

23 Source: Household Labour Force Survey, Statistics New Zealand.

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