Business planning

The Commission’s staff operates under a Business Plan Framework and aims to provide independent, highly regarded, efficient workplace relations services.

The 2013–14 Business Plan sets out four key goals:

  • to provide outstanding service delivery and support to Members of the Commission and the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT)
  • to provide outstanding service and assistance to clients of the Commission and the RSRT
  • to provide outstanding service delivery and support to the General Manager so that she can perform her functions under the Fair Work and Registered Organisations legislation, and
  • to be an effective, high performing and accountable APS agency.

These four goals continue to underpin the activities of the Commission in the performance of our functions.

Performance and Development Framework

The Performance and Development Framework is designed to provide stronger links between individual performance and development and the organisation’s goals. The framework is designed to encourage productivity by defining work and behavioural goals, and aims to:

  • identify professional development opportunities aligned with the Commission’s core skills
  • recognise staff contributions beyond their immediate work area
  • enable the development of goals common to a group of employees
  • ensure that employee behaviour is consistent with the Commission’s values
  • enable individual performance and development plans to be completed and monitored electronically, and
  • apply performance ratings consistently.

The Fair Work Australia Enterprise Agreement 2011–14 (PDF) (FWAEA) provided for a review of the Performance and Development Framework by the Commission and employee representatives to be undertaken during the life of the agreement. The findings of the review were reported to the Executive which resulted in minor changes to the framework.

The Commission is committed to developing a high performing workplace. All staff are required to have an individual Performance and Development Plan. At 1 June 2014, 97.1 per cent of staff had an approved plan in place, a significant improvement on 87 per cent at the same time last year. The Commission will continue to focus on this in 2014–15.

Learning and development

The learning and development component of the Performance and Development Framework aims to create a more capable workforce and is supported by a range of initiatives. Highlights of the training and development activities offered in 2013–14 include:

  • a national training calendar that provided details of learning activities related to defined critical skills sets (People Management and Leadership, Legislation, Technology and Communication)
  • a coaching program for senior staff: five senior staff members participated in the program in 2013–14
  • an online induction program
  • change leadership training and 360 degree feedback reporting for all of the Senior Executive Service (SES) and Senior Management Group, and
  • in-house training to facilitate group learning including:
    • project management
    • a conciliator forum
    • an associate forum
    • personal safety
    • dealing with difficult clients and customers, and
    • a suite of specifically designed training for staff working within the anti-bullying jurisdiction.

Health and safety outcomes

The Commission is committed to maintaining and improving the health and wellbeing of our workforce.

In 2013–14 there were three new compensation claims and 19 accidents/incidents reported by employees. The Commission closely monitors our compensation exposure and internal rehabilitation programs against broader APS considerations of compensation costs, the increasing incidence of longer-term injuries and more problematic claims, including those of a psychological nature. The Commission’s forecast workers compensation premium rate has increased from 0.47 per cent in 2013–14 to 0.68 per cent in 2014–15. The forecast premium rate is well below the 2014–15 forecast premiums for all agencies which is 2.12 per cent.

Initiatives

In 2013–14 the Commission continued to promote a proactive approach to work health and safety (WHS). During the year the most significant WHS initiatives were associated with:

  • strengthening quarterly reporting by managers through the provision of details of WHS matters raised, implemented and/or resolved
  • delivering organisational awareness Mental Health in the Workplace presentations in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane and made available to other locations via video conferencing facilities
  • delivering Resilience and Mental Health in Customer Relations workshops to frontline staff
  • providing workstation assessments and, where needed, rehabilitation case management services to meet the health, safety and rehabilitation needs of the workforce
  • making the flu vaccination program available for all staff
  • providing healthy lifestyle initiatives for the workforce, including pilates and yoga, and
  • participating in R U OK? Day which aims to promote the building of a more connected community and reduce the country’s high suicide rate.

Business continuity

Extensive work was undertaken by the Commission in 2013–14 in reviewing and updating our business continuity plan. The primary focus of that work was in the development of information and communication technology (ICT) disaster recovery capabilities. The Commission’s ICT operations are centralised in Melbourne. To ensure ongoing availability of systems across the organisation, a mirrored site is close to completion in the Commission’s Sydney premises. This will ensure that systems continue to be available Australia-wide in the event of a system failure in either Sydney or Melbourne.