A memo for Tasmanian public servants: just get on with it


fipaa robert cockerell

After two decades in the Tasmanian public sector, Robert Cockerell has some advice for public servants facing reform: get on with implementing it. The new IPAA fellow spoke to The Mandarin.

With the Tasmanian government holding an axe over hundreds of heads in the state’s public service, one veteran agency manager offers some timely advice to the state’s workforce.

Robert Cockerell (pictured) knows a thing or two about restructuring — he led the amalgamation of two corporate services sections when the Department of Primary Industries and Water and the Department of Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts were combined in 2009.

Staff “need to be flexible and adaptable and be prepared to change,” he told The Mandarin. “I found for three of my four branches I was responsible for, that was the case. A lot became responsible for their own futures and looked for opportunities.”

The two biggest issues, he thinks, were bringing the two agencies together culturally and helping staff find jobs elsewhere — which may have been easier then than it will be for those seeking new jobs now.

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