Contribution of Corporate Services
The Corporate Services Division provides corporate policy, professional services and advice to the Department in relation to financial, physical, information and human resources. The Division plays a pivotal role in organisational change by collaborating with business units to enable the delivery of desired departmental outcomes and the meeting or exceeding of agreed service delivery expectations. The contributions of those who work in the Division are highly valued.
Clients and Stakeholders
The main clients of Corporate Services are the Minister, the Department's management and staff, and other government agencies such as the Departments of Premier and Cabinet, and Treasury and Finance, and Service Tasmania. The stakeholders include all our debtors and creditors, suppliers and contractors, employee and employer organisations, and the public in general.
Provision of Services
The Division's staff deliver the majority of corporate functions, with assistance from external contractors as required.
Achievements Against Strategies Identified for 2000-2001
The Will and The Way Program
The Will and The Way program focused this year on the development of core skills around "how we do business" as well as the planning phases for the integration of The Will and The Way into our business planning processes. A skills and development program in influencing and negotiation skills (Negotiating the Way) began this year after trialling several different programs based on skilling staff in a critical component of The Will and The Way. This financial year 60 key DIER staff who have significant relationships with DIER's end users, clients and stakeholders have completed a two or three day program. Initial evaluation has been extremely positive, leading to the scheduling of further programs for the 2001-2002 financial year.
Leadership development activity was also planned and undertaken this year, with Corporate Services staff participating in developing an action framework with Branches and Divisions for implementing the issues arising from the survey work undertaken in 1999-2000.
Human Resources Systems Process and Policy Framework
This project focused on the provision of information by Human Resources staff about the implications of the new State Service Act 2000 and associated guidelines. Further policy and systems development will continue in the new financial year.
Learning and Development Database
A database was trialled over the last year and quarterly reports were produced for managers and staff on a Corporate, Divisional, Branch and Individual level showing:
expenditure on learning and development activities (including salary and other costs);
types and categories of learning in relation to corporate capabilities;
planned versus actual learning activities; and
assessments of return on investment against learning and development expenditure.
For the first time reports encompassed all learning activities from both branch and corporate generic budgets. Reporting on planned learning and return on investment (ROI) has supported the use of the self-management planning process and encouraged further emphasis on evaluating learning. Reports to managers and individuals have also increased awareness of learning, resulting in an increase of activity over 2000-01.
Managing Diversity Management Plan
The Managing Diversity Plan has substantially met its projected targets for this year. Although work has continued in all areas, the main focus this year has been on the Youth under 25 years target group which, along with people from culturally diverse backgrounds, Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders, and people with disabilities, are under-represented in comparison with the community profile.
Youth employment has been supported through financial sponsorship and active participation in three career fairs as part of a whole-of-government attempt to promote the Public Service as an attractive career choice for graduates and youth under 25 years. DIER has developed Youth Employment Guidelines and Principles, which have been endorsed by the DIER Management Group.
DIER also actively promotes and supports participation in the Women in Management and Springboard programs, has policies in place to encourage flexible work practices and encourages women to apply for senior positions.
Procedural and Learning Framework for DIER/RTO Accreditation
An essential component of the Learning Framework was the accreditation of DIER as a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). DIER is now able to utilise the competencies and performance criteria contained within the qualifications and units of the Public Service Training Package for integral elements of DIER's people management strategy. Central to this strategy is a focus on Youth Employment. DIER, as an RTO, can now recruit trainees for a structured training program leading to a Certificate III or IV in Government. The first group of three trainees is being engaged early in 2001-02.
Goods and Services Tax (GST)
The GST was successfully implemented within the Department and built into routine practices. The quality of the GST project was tested by an independent assessment of the first monthly Business Activity Statement and found to meet or exceed expectations. The continuing management of the GST was reviewed by Internal Audit and again found to meet or exceed expectations.
Implementation of Finance1
The Resource Management and the Financial Services Branches collaborated in the implementation of a new Financial Management Information System. The implementation during the year was smooth and has significantly improved the quality of information and the processing and reporting functionality available throughout the Department.
Aligned with the implementation of the new Financial Management Information System has been the implementation of receiving and paying invoices by electronic means. This project involves large volume suppliers to the Department and alleviates the need to re-key large amounts of data. This project will continue during 2001-02.
Quality Financial Services
A review was undertaken to ensure the focus of high quality service to customers as set out in The Will and the Way was continued and to ensure the Financial Services Branch's functions were increasingly effective. The quality of service is evidenced in the many positive performance reviews conducted by the Auditor-General during 2000-01 and the Department winning the Auditor-General's award for excellence in working papers for the annual financial statements.
A number of property related issues were addressed during the year, including the decommissioning of 1 Collins Street and the transfer of staff and services to new premises in 188 Collins Street. In addition, there have been accommodation-related issues at 10 Murray Street (including a review of building security) and lease related issues in Burnie and Mornington.
Corporate Information Services
Significant progress has been made in Corporate Information Services through the implementation of modern technology and contemporary record-keeping practice in the related Divisions of Infrastructure Policy, Roads and Public Transport, Land Transport Safety, Corporate Services and the Minister's Office to pilot electronic scanning and registering of corporate information received via e-mail and over the Internet. Particular areas include electronic scanning of medical reports for driver specific files and student transport maps, and piloting business unit registration of their corporate e-mails directly into the Tower Records Information Management system (TRIM).
An Incoming and Outgoing Mail Policy was implemented, along with revised record keeping practices and electronic processes to support the management of Ministerial correspondence. Substantial work has also been undertaken to present the Departmental Management Group with a business case outlining the benefits and requirements for the introduction of Electronic Document Management practices.
IT Support Services
Significant progress has been made towards planning and implementing of technical infrastructure to enable the Motor Registry System to operate in the Tasmanian Government Disaster Recovery Facility. The Registration and Licensing Branch is testing the application to ensure that it can operate effectively within this environment. This service will be covered by a Service Level Agreement between the Telecommunications Management Division in the Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPaC) and DIER.
Corporate Applications Services
A small team led by the Department of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources has effectively negotiated with Oracle an Agreement for a Tasmanian Site Licence covering all Tasmanian State and Local Governments, Government Business Enterprises (GBEs) and State Owned Companies (SOCs). Under this Agreement, individual Government sites can implement any new business applications without purchasing any additional licences. The Agreement includes coverage for internal government access and external (public) usage via web enabled technology.
During the year various initiatives have been completed for the Motor Registry System (MRS), including applying the National Registration and Licensing Reforms to the Motor Registry System; participating in the development and introduction of a Change Management approach for the implementation of future changes to the MRS environment; and involvement in a Risk Assessment and Audit of Controls of Registration and Licensing functions conducted by KPMG.
The first stage of the Human Resources Review was successfully completed with the integration of human resources support for the Workplace Standards and Mineral Resources Divisions to the Human Resources Branch. A number of staff have undertaken learning, development and cross-skilling.
The upgrade to the REMUS Human Resource Management System was successfully completed allowing for the eventual migration to an Internet based version of the system.
Participation in the Resources and Skills Project within the Roads and Public Transport Division of DIER identified key areas to address in the attraction and retention of professional engineering staff.
The Financial Services Branch has taken responsibility for the ongoing management of the Department's stationery contracts following the successful tendering of the supply of stationery items to the Department.
The first phase of accrual budgeting was addressed, with the Department taking a leading role in this whole-of-government project. The preparation of departmental accrual budgeting statements for inclusion in government-wide statements was successfully completed.
The Government Directory Service was implemented during April 2001 and is continually updated.
The new State Service Act 2000, together with associated legislation, was proclaimed from 1 May 2001. The Department participated in working groups during the Act's development and is working towards the full implementation of the Act and the conditions of service associated with the recent State Service Wages Agreement.
A policy for the management of leave has been developed and implemented in conjunction with regular management reporting.
A s part of supporting business units to achieve their outcomes, the Human Resources Branch assisted branches by providing consultancy services for Branch restructures, creation of new positions and position reviews.
Management of the PC replacement program for a third of staff working in the related divisions of Transport and Corporate Services, and the Minister's Office.
Implementation of various business improvement functionality into the Concessions Allowance and Subsidiary system.
Specification of additional modules for acquisition in the next fiscal year into the Roads Information Management System (RIMS) environment.
Undertaking development of a security version of the Vehicle Inspectors Systems to support the extension of access for the system for the Road Safety taskforce in the Department of Police and Public Safety.