Lloyd’s return fire: APS ‘professional, dynamic, adaptable’

The federal government’s HR boss has refuted the flurry of claims about the Australian Public Service’s diminished corporate memory and courage to raise concerns that ministers may not want to hear.

The APS may not be perfect, public service commissioner John Lloyd wrote in an opinion piece on Tuesday, but he says “eulogis[ing] past glory days and asserting the capability of the service is now diminished” is inaccurate. The reference was to comment by former APS commissioner Andrew Podger and Laura Tingle’s Quarterly Essay, Political Amnesia: How We Forgot How to Govern.

Although a supporter of greater private sector role in public service deliver, Lloyd says the APS “continues to be highly functioning and robust”.

“The capability of public servants is on show every day. It can be stepping up to help recovery after cyclones or air disasters, implementing a major national reform such as the National Disability Insurance Scheme or running the tax system more efficiently with less paperwork.

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