Blogging the latest government news and public sector briefs ...


    8 ways public servants can help service providers prepare for the NDIS

    One of the big challenges of the National Disability Insurance Scheme roll-out for state and territory governments is helping the mostly nonprofit service providers transition from block funding to the new era, and the New South Wales audit office thinks the state Department of Family and Community Services is doing a pretty good job in that regard. […]


    Digital Marketplace expands into new service fields

    The federal government’s Digital Marketplace is expanding to take on more service fields. Five new categories of services were added this week, building on the existing areas of software, design, change, strategy and delivery.

    The new fields available for both buyers and sellers are still firmly in the digital space:

    • Cyber security
    • Data science
    • Content and publishing
    • Marketing, communications and engagement
    • Support and operations



    Fahour quits as Australia Post chief, board put on leash

    The chief executive of Australia Post, Ahmed Fahour has resigned from the role of chief postie and will leave the organisation in July 2017.

    Three government ministers, Mathias Cormann, Mitch Fifield and Michaelia Cash, made a move against the Australia Post board in the wake of the resignation, insisting that the Remuneration Tribunal be responsible for overseeing pay and conditions of the government corporation’s next chief. […]


    Open government update: all talks to go with action

    The action part of Australia’s first Open Government National Action Plan is “well underway” as public consultation on various related initiatives draws to a close and agencies prepare to get to work on their respective roles in the process. […]


    Trust in government in sharp decline, survey shows

    It’s clear that trust in government has been falling across developed countries for a while.

    Despite the recent comeback by One Nation, the malaise that has reshaped politics overseas has not yet had the same impact in Australia. But new data suggests Australia might not be immune to the fundamental distrust that’s eating away at democratic institutions in other countries.

    Adding to the evidence is the Edelman trust barometer 2017, a global survey of people across 28 countries, which reveals the largest ever global drop in trust across the four key institutions of government, business, media and NGOs. […]


    Coming soon: federal boost for rural health and a new e-health plan

    The Commonwealth will establish a new Rural Health Commissioner and “redesign” the federally funded network of independent rural health workforce agencies, as it puts the best part of $100 million towards the perennial challenge of getting doctors to work outside metropolitan areas.

    The federal government has put aside $4.4 million to get the commissioner up and running, and $93 million for the seven rural health workforce agencies to run new programs designed to attract and retain clinicians and allied health professionals in rural, regional and remote areas. […]


    Gendered job ads in Victoria’s sights

    It’s difficult to increase gender diversity in an organisation if few women apply for jobs there in the first place.

    But individual choice doesn’t exist in a vacuum — research shows that using more masculine words in a job advertisement, such as leader, competitive or dominant, can make it less likely women will apply.

    An organisation that describes a role as requiring a “superior ability to satisfy customers”, as opposed to someone who is “sensitive to clients’ needs”, may inadvertently skew interest towards male candidates, for example. Male-dominated areas, which tend to be higher-paid, are more likely to use such language when recruiting. […]


    The changing shape of fraud against the Commonwealth

    Commonwealth agencies reported just under 400,000 incidents of alleged, suspected or proven fraud over the four years ending June 30, 2014, according to the Australian Institute of Criminology’s latest report on the subject, which estimates at least $1.203 billion was scammed out of the public purse in that period. […]


    US tries the ‘fair go’ treatment for federal employment

    How do you eliminate unconscious bias for government job applicants with a criminal history or adverse credit background? ‘Ban the box’ said the United States’ Office of Personnel Management, some three years after an order from then-president Barack Obama to prevent undue denials of federal employment opportunities.

    The term comes from an international campaign by civil rights groups to help people released from prison rebuild their lives.

    ‘Ban the box’ will become mandatory for all US agencies by March 31, 2017, according to new guidance from the OPM.


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