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Role of the PSC

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The Government Sector Employment Act 2013 establishes the role of the Public Service Commissioner in order to develop a modern high performing government sector.

The principal objectives of the Commissioner are to:

  • Promote and maintain the highest levels of integrity, impartiality, accountability and leadership across the government sector.
  • Improve the capability of the government sector to provide strategic and innovative policy advice, implement the decisions of the Government and meet public expectations.
  • Attract and retain a high calibre professional government sector workforce.
  • Ensure that government sector recruitment and selection processes comply with the merit principle and adhere to professional standards.
  • Foster a public service culture in which customer service, initiative, individual responsibility and the achievement of results are strongly valued.
  • Build public confidence in the government sector.
  • Support the Government in achieving positive budget outcomes through strengthening the capability of the government sector workforce.

The Commissioner has the following functions:

  • To identify reform opportunities for the government sector workforce and to advise the Government on policy innovations and strategy in those areas of reform.
  • To lead the strategic development and management of the government sector workforce in relation to:
    • workforce planning, including identifying risks and strategies to minimise risks
    • recruitment, particularly compliance with requirements relating to appointment and promotion on merit
    • performance management and recognition
    • equity and diversity, including strategies to ensure the government sector reflects the diversity of the wider community
    • general conduct and compliance with ethical practices
    • learning and development
    • succession planning
    • redeployment, including excess employees
    • staff mobility
    • executive staffing arrangements.
  • Advise the Government on leadership structure for the government sector.
  • Advise the Government on appropriate strategies, policies and practices in relation to the structure of the government sector workforce.
  • Advise the Government on appropriate strategies, policies and practices in relation to such other public sector matters as the Minister may determine from time to time, and to monitor, co-ordinate and assist the implementation of Government strategies, policies and practices in such other areas as the Minister may determine from time to time.
  • Develop and advise the Government on service delivery strategies and models for the government sector through collaboration with the private business sector, the not-for-profit sector and the wider community.
  • Set standards, subject to any legislative requirements, for the selection of persons for appointment as members of boards or committees of public authorities (including Government business enterprises).

The Commissioner has and may exercise such other functions as are conferred or imposed on the Commissioner by or under the Government Sector Employment Act 2013 or any other Act. For example, the Commissioner has the power to conduct inquiries into any matter relating to the administration or management of a government sector agency. See Guideline: Inquiries into the administration and management of government sector agencies (PDF 627.2KB).

The Commissioner is to exercise functions in accordance with general policies and strategic directions determined by the Public Service Commission Advisory Board.