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Public Service Commission


This year marks the 21st anniversary of the NSW Government’s Workforce Profile. The Workforce Profile Report provides insight into the NSW public sector, the largest employer in Australia and a key source of employment in regional NSW. It is a companion to the State of the NSW Public Sector Report, providing a deeper analytic perspective on workforce characteristics and trends.

The 2019 Workforce Profile highlights several important aspects of the public sector:

  • Key frontline roles continued to increase, and the full-time equivalent (FTE) number of Nurses, Teachers and Police increased by 1.2% in 2019.
  • The public sector remains an important regional employer, accounting for up to 20% of employment in some regions. This year’s report continues to analyse the representation of the broader public sector in regional areas, as well as provide a focus on public servants and senior executives, recognising the importance that these roles have in local decision making and regional career paths.
  • There has been progress in increasing the diversity of the workforce in 2019 but challenges remain. For the first time since 2012 the representation of people with disability did not decline, staying at an estimated 2.5%. The rate of commencement of people with disability increased relative to separations in 2019, and the target of 5.6% representation by 2025 has been added to the Premier’s Priority for a world class Public Service.
  • The public sector is on track to exceed the Premier’s Priority target to double the number of Aboriginal senior leaders by 2025, while achieving gender equity in senior leaders poses more of a challenge. Female senior leader representation increased to 40.3% in 2019, however at the current rate of progress this target will not be met in 2025.
  • There were an estimated 3.5% Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees in the public sector in 2019. The Aboriginal Employment Strategy 2019–2025 increased the target for Aboriginal peoples across all salary ranges to 3.0%, and while this has been achieved in the lower salary ranges, the upper ranges are below the target.
  • The gender pay gap widened to 2.2% in 2019 from 1.1% in 2018. This primarily related to changes in lower remunerated roles, with 4.1 percentage points higher growth in the proportion of women paid below the median salary relative to men.

The PSC would like to thank the departments and agencies across NSW Government for their continued support and commitment to providing their workforce data. Without this support, our analysis and reports would not be possible.


Scott Johnston

Acting Public Service Commissioner