Nominations open for inaugural APS innovation awards

By The Mandarin

March 3, 2016

Have you seen a great idea in the public sector? Now is the time let your fellow public servants know good ideas can be rewarded by putting them up for the inaugural Public Sector Innovation Awards.

A collaborative initiative that began with guidance from the Secretaries Board, and teamwork between IPAA ACT and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, these awards are intended to be a platform to share innovative approaches across the Australian Public Service.

Why nominate? All finalists and award winners get to show off their ideas in front of a select group of industry leaders in innovation. A small public sector innovation could lead to much bigger things for those who get their nominations in.

For everyone else, promoting good ideas will foster a culture that supports and celebrates people and agencies doing things differently, and spread the good ideas and lessons learned along the way.

Any individual, work unit, group or team of a Commonwealth government entity may nominate an initiative. Size of the initiative is not a factor; they can span across entire organisations (or multiple organisations), or they can be small in scale with a high impact local scope.

Glenys BeauchampIPAA ACT president Glenys Beauchamp (pictured), who is also secretary of the department coordinating APS innovation efforts, the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, revealed the new awards scheme at last year at IPAA ACT’s other awards — the Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Sector Management. On Wednesday she announced that the nominations for the new innovation awards are now open to a gathering in Canberra head of next week’s International Women’s Day.

For the inaugural 2016 awards there will be four categories:

1. Innovative solutions

We took an idea and tried something different!

Recognising a new or improved solution to an existing problem. The solution may relate to process, to service delivery, to programmes, to policy or to regulatory approaches. It may relate to stopping doing something (a process or a service) so that a new approach can be tried

2. Engaging with the edge

Embracing radical approaches!

Recognising new methods or new technologies, engaging with new trends or issues that will affect core work in the future, new thinking or frameworks about how core work might be done, or engaging with new partners in new ways

3. Culture and practice

The people part – the key to innovation…

Recognising initiatives or contributions that help strengthen the culture and capability for innovation. This may be about supporting the innovation process, about engaging or empowering staff, or demonstrating the spirit of innovation

4. Digital transformation

Digital, online and technology to innovate…

Initiatives that demonstrate the spirit of digital transformation, including providing better and easier services and interactions with citizens.

Stay tuned to the IPAA ACT website for more updates as they’re running the judging and awards process. Nomination can be made through this form — peers may submit as well as self-nominations — but you only have six weeks, as nomination close on April 15. The winners ceremony will be held on July 27.

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