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Publications archive - Annual reports


Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.

Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Environment Australia Annual Report 2001-02

Environment Australia, 2002
ISSN 1441-9335

Management and accountability (continued)
management of Human Resources

Workforce planning, employee turnover, development and retention

Environment Australia continued its commitment to improving its workforce planning strategies, and re-examining priorities as necessary, to better align resources and workloads. Environment Australia continued to analyse its workforce trends and people management performance with quarterly reports provided at the divisional level to the Environment Executive on workforce data, including information on demographics, retention and employee turnover.

In 2001-02 Environment Australia (excluding the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) and AAD) was recognised and accredited as an Investor in People and a committed resource was dedicated to coordinating Investor in People activities. To ensure a greater link between learning and development and organisational needs, the Environment Australia People Development Policy was developed, which aims to give employees the right skills at the right time to meet Environment Australia's changing business needs.

The Secretary became a member of the Management Advisory Committee Organisational Renewal Subcommittee. The subcommittee is addressing the changing nature of the Australian Public Service workforce including the likely retirement patterns and desired working arrangements of mature aged workers in the Australian Public Service; career intentions and employer-of-choice views of new (graduate) entrants; responses to changing workforce needs; and the impact of superannuation and approaches available to agencies in this regard.

As part of the Management Advisory Committee's organisational renewal project, the Secretary and the People Management Branch completed a survey on workforce planning practices in Environment Australia and the Secretary was interviewed to gain an overall perspective of workforce planning issues and strategies in the Department.

The Performance and Development Scheme continued (including the 360 degree feedback process).

There was greater use of development programmes for Executive Level 2 officers with the potential for advancement. Employees were selected to attend the Career Development Assessment Centre and a new Masters in Management programme at the National Graduate School of Management at the Australian National University.

Better use was made of exit surveys to gain a more sophisticated understanding of the reasons employees leave Environment Australia.

Bureau of Meteorology

A major organisational challenge facing the Bureau continued to be maintaining the scientific quality and integrity of operations and services, in the face of the loss of experience and expertise flowing from the ongoing erosion of overall employee numbers within a resource constrained environment. In the management of human resources, the main objectives remained employee training and development, recruitment and renewal, employees' satisfaction and motivation and industrial harmony.

In particular, the Bureau strove to maintain high standards of initial training and an effective programme of continuing development of its employees through the Bureau of Meteorology Training Centre, supplemented by additional internal and external management and administrative training. Moreover, to ensure that the Bureau's key service operations are adequately supported, the recruitment intake of specialist employees groups (meteorologists, observers and technicians) was maximised, consistent with achieving a balanced recruitment outcome for the other categories of employees. In taking a more strategic approach to workforce planning, the Bureau undertook preliminary work aimed at developing and implementing annual individual development plans for all employees, to help identify learning and development needs at the individual level.

Australian Antarctic Division

The AAD has had a very low rate of employee turnover, on average approximately 3 per cent per year. The average age of AAD employees is approximately 46 years with many having more than 20 years service. In this context, and within the AAD's People Management Framework, the AAD has actively participated in Environment Australia's Graduate Development Programme, with the intention of recruiting graduate administrative assistants permanently as a strategy in addressing workforce planning requirements.

Generally, the AAD is able to attract suitably qualified applicants for most vacancies, although there has been some difficulty in recruiting women in science and management disciplines. The AAD will be developing strategies to address this early in 2002-03.

Impacts and features of certified agreements, Australian Workplace Agreements and productivity initiatives

Certified agreements

The Environment Australia Certified Agreement 2000-2002 continued to operate, providing a competitive and flexible remuneration and conditions framework. The agreement has a nominal expiry date of 30 June 2002. Negotiations on the third certified agreement are under way.

The Certified Agreement 2000-2002 made a number of commitments to further improve Environment Australia's productivity and to contribute towards achievement of programme outcomes. During the year the following productivity gains, as highlighted in the certified agreement, were achieved:

Bureau of Meteorology

The major industrial relations action for the year centred on the development, negotiation and finalisation of a successor certified agreement for Bureau employees. The Bureau of Meteorology Certified Agreement 2002-2003 was finalised in late June 2002 and included a 10 per cent pay rise over a two-year period in return for a number of productivity improvement and increased efficiency measures. The pay rise restored the Bureau to around the middle ground of Australian Public Service salaries, recognising the substantial efforts of employees, in the face of the difficulties caused by declining resources levels in recent years.

Australian Antarctic Division

The Australian Antarctic Division Certified Agreement 2000-2002 is current to 27 August 2002 with negotiations progressing on the next agreement.

The current agreement emphasises the development and implementation of a new performance appraisal scheme for all employees, reinforcing a performance and learning culture within the AAD and focusing on appropriate values and business outcomes. These aspects have been incorporated and reinforced through the AAD's People Management Framework, and include specific organisational behaviours against which potential and existing AAD employees will be assessed.

Australian Workplace Agreements

As part of the Government's policy parameters for agreement making, Environment Australia, (excluding the Bureau of Meteorology and AAD) has continued to offer all ongoing Executive Level 1 and 2 employees an Australian Workplace Agreement. Environment Australia Executive Level employees have a key role to play in the leadership and management of Environment Australia. The Australian Workplace Agreement outlines Executive Level requirements in relation to corporate leadership and management responsibilities.

Environment Australia aims, through Australian Workplace Agreements, to:

In June 2002, the AAD commenced offering all ongoing Executive Level 1 and 2 employees an Australian Workplace Agreement, recognising that Executive Level employees have a key role to play in the leadership and management of the AAD.

Numbers of employees under certified agreements and Australian Workplace Agreements and non-salary benefits

Senior Executive Service

As at 30 June 2002, there were 52 approved Australian Workplace Agreements for Senior Executive Service employees.

The salary range available for Senior Executive Service employees is from $94 510 to $159 376. Senior Executive Service employees also have access to performance pay bonuses.

Senior Executive Service Australian Workplace Agreements provide non-salary benefits of an executive vehicle, business equipment (home computing facilities including modem, personal computer or laptop and printer) and airline club membership.

Non-Senior Executive Service

There are 1302 Environment Australia employees covered by the Environment Australia Certified Agreement 2000-2002 and 198 Executive Level employees covered by Australian Workplace Agreements.

The main features of the Executive Level Australian Workplace Agreements include:

Non-salary benefits provided by Environment Australia to employees under the certified agreement include:

Bureau of Meteorology

There are 1442 employees covered by the Bureau's certified agreement (based on eligibility to vote). Four non-Senior Executive Service employees are covered by Australian Workplace Agreements.

Non-salary benefits provided to Bureau employees (excluding Australian Workplace Agreement provisions) include:

Australian Antarctic Division

There are 343 AAD employees covered by the certified agreement and four non-Senior Executive Service employees covered by Australian Workplace Agreements.

Training and development

Environment Australia (excluding the Bureau of Meteorology and AAD)

In April 2002, the People Development Policy was released outlining the objectives, development principles, responsibilities for development and performance measures for learning and development in Environment Australia. The strategy commits Environment Australia to support the development of its people in line with the Department's aims and objectives. Following the 30 July 2001 decision by the Environment Executive, all division heads have committed to providing an annual average investment in training and development of $1000 and five days per employee.

In December 2001 Environment Australia was awarded certification as an Investor in People - one of the largest and most diverse organisations to have achieved this recognition. Investors in People is an international quality standard that defines good practice for improving an organisation's performance through its people. Key initiatives that contributed to Environment Australia receiving the certification included a robust Performance and Development Scheme that emphasised the links between corporate aims and individual's work plans; regular seminars by senior executives; bi-monthly meetings of the Secretary and deputy secretaries with directors; the Graduate Programme and various institutional commitments to the learning and development of all employees. All of these initiatives are continuing.

The first round of 360 degree feedback for all non-Senior Executive Service employees was completed during the year and employees were given formal instruction on how to interpret their results. Employees were encouraged to discuss their results with their mentors and identify priority development needs in their development plan.

Under Environment Australia's Graduate Programme, 23 graduates commenced in February 2002. The recruitment process, featuring online applications, preliminary testing and assessment centres, continued to be successful. About 1200 people from around Australia applied for these positions.

Implementation of the Indigenous Recruitment and Career Development Strategy made further progress during the year. Further training in job selection processes and techniques was provided to employees and traditional owners of the three jointly managed national parks, and cross-cultural and workplace diversity awareness programmes were conducted across Environment Australia. The strategy provides for ten Indigenous traineeship positions in the Canberra office and the national parks. All positions were filled by 30 June 2002.

Learning guides up to Certificate 3 level were produced for the Northern Territory Education and Training Authority training package in lands, parks and wildlife. The Australian National Training Authority recently endorsed land, parks and wildlife competencies. This provides accredited training for Indigenous and other rangers.

Other training provided during the year included:

Evaluation of the Performance and Development Scheme

Following the first full year of operation it was decided to undertake a major evaluation of the scheme to improve its utility for managing individual and team performance and linking development planning to organisational priorities.

Independent consultants were engaged to assist in conducting the evaluation and providing a report with recommendations to improve the scheme. The evaluators were asked to report on:

The evaluation methodology included a review of the scheme's existing documentation, a survey of employees, reporting to an employees reference group and a steering committee, group discussions with some remote area employees, an audit of performance agreements, focus groups and consideration of the Management Advisory Committee and the Institute of Public Administration Australia reports on Australian Public Service-wide trends in performance management.

The final evaluation report was provided to the steering committee in late March and considered by the Environment Executive in April. The findings included that the scheme was seen as most successful in aligning individual performance efforts by clarifying expectations and encouraging managers and employees to focus on, and discuss, performance and accountability requirements. More than 90 per cent of survey respondents reported that they had gained some personal benefit directly related to the scheme's objectives.

Survey respondents also considered that the scheme was useful in:

The evaluators concluded that the scheme was particularly valuable in helping individuals to understand how they contribute to the achievement of organisational objectives. The scheme was widely seen as helping employees to 'make the planning connection'.

Recommendations for improving the scheme including simplifying the assessment process, placing a greater emphasis on job-related learning and development and identifying more effective performance measures and standards. New guidelines have been developed to implement improvements flowing from evaluation recommendations. The revised scheme will commence from 1 July 2002.

Bureau of Meteorology

The primary objective of the Bureau of Meteorology training programme is to meet the current and emerging needs of employees, with appropriate management skills and specialised technical and professional skills. A secondary objective is to provide specialised meteorological training to Australian Defence Force personnel and to the employees of overseas National Meteorological and Hydrological Services.

In 2001 and 2002, 59 and 46 trainees respectively undertook initial training (initial training courses are conducted in each calendar year). Of these, 60 were studying the 40-week Graduate Diploma in Meteorology course (including six trainees from the Navy and 13 from overseas) and 43 were undertaking either the 33-week Technical Officer (Observer) or the Technical Officer (Engineering) course.

Over 270 employees received specialised technical or professional in-service training. Courses included First-in Maintenance, Meteorological Information Office Services, Station Management, Climate and Consultancy courses for Technical Officers (Observer); and New Equipment, Hazardous area and AUSTEL Licence training for Technical Officers (Engineering). Professional in-service training undertaken by meteorologists included general Australian Integrated Forecaster Station and Satellite Applications training courses, as well as competency training for the forecasting of severe thunderstorms, tropical cyclones and fire weather. A ten-day Introductory Meteorology course was conducted for Bureau non-meteorological employees to provide improved context for their work.

Over 660 employees undertook short, in-service management development training courses, ranging in length from one day to one week. These courses covered such areas as project, change or time management, client service, policy development, presentation and communication skills, as well as Australian Public Service Values and the Australian Public Service Code of Conduct.

In 2002, 27 employees were enrolled in the Bureau-specific Management Education Programme, which was conducted in conjunction with the Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers, Australia. During the eleventh year of the Bureau's Study Bank scheme, 112 employees enrolled as part-time students. Three employees were awarded scholarships to further their tertiary studies on a full-time basis, and one was enrolled in the CSIRO Project Leaders Programme.

Bureau employees at Pearce (Western Australia) and East Sale (Victoria) RAAF training bases provided meteorological training for the RAAF. More than 240 RAAF pilots, air traffic controllers, navigators and flying instructors received meteorological training in 2001-02.

Further details on the Bureau of Meteorology's training activities for 2001-02 are in the Bureau's annual report.

Australian Antarctic Division

The AAD continued to invest in management and leadership development at the non-Senior Executive Service level. Nominated employees, usually at the Australian Public Service level 6 and above, participated in a management and leadership development programme with the Mt Eliza Business School. The programme promotes appropriate values consistent with the AAD's identified organisational behaviours, and generates an enhanced awareness of leadership style, expectations, challenges and personal attributes.

The finalisation of the AAD's People Management Framework enables the AAD to further develop and/or enhance training and development strategies associated with addressing workforce planning issues and those associated with the new Performance Management Scheme. These strategies will support the promoting of a high performance and learning culture within the AAD, consistent with the certified agreement commitments and required business outcomes.

Remuneration for Senior Executive Service employees

Environment Australia has a remuneration strategy for its employees in the Senior Executive Service which is based on the following set of principles:

Almost all Environment Australia's Senior Executive Service employees have Australian Workplace Agreements. Remuneration packages comprise base pay, performance pay and other benefits, such as a maintained vehicle. The Secretary reviews the Senior Executive Service remuneration package from time to time. The current third round Senior Executive Service Australian Workplace Agreements became effective on 1 July 2001 and have a nominal expiry date of 30 June 2003.

Occupational health and safety

Environment Australia's occupational health and safety performance is outlined at Appendix 3.

Environment Australia (excluding BOM and AAD*) Employee Salaries as at 30 June 2002
Environment Australia classification Salary range
Level 1/2 $27 199 - $35 216
Level 3 $35 972 - $39 615
Level 4 $40 319 - $43 509
Level 5 $44 125 - $47 297
Level 6 $48 127 - $55 697
Executive Level 1 $60 347 - $73 758
Executive Level 2 $69 602 - $89 702
* BOM Bureau of Meteorology
AAD Australian Antarctic Division
Bureau of Meteorology Employee Salaries as at 30 June 2002
Australian Public Service classification Salary range
Cadet - work placement $28 425 - $31 416
Cadet - full-time study $16 083 - $17 775
Trainee $30 694 - $34 023
Graduate $34 804
Level 1 $28 425 - $31 416
Level 2 $33 056 - $35 675 ($36 535 RP)
Level 3 $36 642 - $39 547 ($42 279 RP)
Level 4 $40 839 - $44 342
Level 5 $45 551 - $49 198
Level 6 $50 421 - $56 513
Executive Level 1 $63 068 - $76 739
Executive Level 2 $72 741 - $113 731
Chief Research Scientist $115 293
RP means retention point.
Includes Research Scientists and Public Affairs Officers.
Australian Antarctic Division Employee Salaries as at 30 June 2002
Classification Salary range
Band 1 $27 940 - $30 531
Band 2 $31 447 - $35 392
Band 3 $36 454 - $38 673
Band 4 $39 834 - $43 528
Band 5 $44 834 - $47 563
Band 6 $48 990 - $55 138
Band 7 $56 793 - $65 840
Band 8 $67 814 - $112 901
Medical practitioner band 2 $88 484 - $102 579
Medical practitioner band 1 $93 087 - $104 283
Expeditioner band 1 $38 530 - $51 593
Expeditioner band 2 $47 421 - $63 998
Expeditioner band 3 $65 863 - $75 524
Performance Pay Executive Levels 1 and 2 2001-02
Environment Australia  
Number of staff 198
Average performance pay $4409
Range of performance pay $594 - $9500
Total $873 042
Bureau of Meteorology  
Number of staff 4  
Average performance pay $7469
Range of performance pay $4345 - $10 428
Total $29 877
Grand total $902 919
AAD Executive Level Australian Workplace Agreements do not include provisions for performance pay.
Performance Pay Senior Executive Service 2001-02
  Band 1 Bands 2 and 3
Number of staff 34 16
Average performance pay $7378 $13 998
Range of performance pay $563 - $11 335 $5689 - $17 423
Total $250 843 $223 961
Grand total
$474 804
Senior Executive Service performance pay for the 2000-01 appraisal cycle was paid during 2001-02. 34 Band 1 employees and 16 Band 2 and 3 employees received payment. Some payments were made on a pro rata basis as Senior Executive Service employment did not span the full appraisal cycle.
Staff Employed Under the Public Service Act as at 30 June 2002
    Full-time       Part-time Total
  Ongoing Non-ongoing Ongoing Non-ongoing
  M F M F M F M F  
Department 364 401 35 49 19 63 12 13 956
Parks Australia 135 61 31 30 2 17 118 64 458
Australian Heritage Commission 22 40 9 2 2 8   3 86
Total Environment Australia                  
(excluding BOM and AAD) 521 502 75 81 23 88 130 80 1500
Australian Antarctic Division 136 43 116 32 1 11 6 6 351
Bureau of Meteorology 1127 184 50 22 9 34 10 9 1445
Grand total 1784 729 241 135 33 133 146 95 3296
Environment Australia (excluding BOM and AAD) Staff by Classification Gender and Location as at 30 June 2002
  Secretary SES EA Executive Levels 1 & 2 EA 1/2-6* Research Scientists Public Affairs  
Females   11 169 416   13  
Males 1 29 219 227 2 4  
Total 1 40 388 643 2 17  
Females       1 16   Includes Norfolk Island, Booderee and Beecroft
Males     3 40      
Total     4 56      
Females         3   Indian Ocean islands
Males       1 8    
Total       1 11    
Females       4 120    
Males     3 15 191 4  
Total     3 19 311 4  
Grand total 1 43 412 1021 6 17 1500
* Includes casual and day labour employees.
Environment Australia (excluding BOM and AAD) Senior Executive Service as at 30 June 2002
  Male Female Total
Band 1 21 9 30
Band 2 8 1 9
Band 3 3 1 4
Includes 8 inoperative staff.
Includes 3 Executive Level 2 staff acting SES Band 1.
Environment Australia (excluding BOM and AAD) Senior Executive Service Mobility 2001-02
Commencements 1
Cessations 3
Transfers/promotions within the Department 1
Bureau of Meteorology Staff by Classification Gender and Location as at 30 June 2002
  Chief of Division SES Administrative officer Professional officer Technical officer General service officer Information technology officer Public affairs officer Research scientist Trainee TOTAL
Female     3 7 4           14
Male   1 6 41 68         1 117
Total   1 9 48 72         1 131
Female   1 79 51 15   20     5 171
Male 1 9 89 216 141 3 115 1 15 17 607
Total 1 10 168 267 156 3 135 1 15 22 778
Female     4 5 6   1       16
Male   1 8 40 90 1 1       141
Total   1 12 45 96 1 2       157
Female     5 3 3           11
Male     5 22 48 1 1       77
Total     10 25 51 1 1       88
Female     4 4 4           12
Male   1 4 28 81   2       116
Total   1 8 32 85   2       128
Female     5 1 5           11
Male     2 22 42   1       67
Total     7 23 47   1       78
Female     3 8 3           14
Male     1 26 44           71
Total     4 34 47           85
Total female 0 1 103 79 40 0 21 0 0 5 249
Total male 1 12 115 395 514 5 120 1 15 18 1196
Grand total 1 13 218 474 554 5 141 1 15 23 1445
Bureau of Meteorology Senior Executive Service as at 30 June 2002
  Band 1 Band 2 Band 3 Total
Male 9 3* 1 13
Female 1 0 0 1
Total 10 3* 1 14
* Includes one Chief of Division Grade 2.
Bureau of Meteorology Senior Executive Service Mobility 2001-02
Transfers within Bureau of Meteorology 1
Promotions within Bureau of Meteorology 4
Transfers from outside Bureau of Meteorology 1
Australian Antarctic Division Staff by Classification, Gender and Location as at 30 June 2002
  Chief of Division SES Band 1-8 Medical practitioner level 1-2 Expeditioner band 1-3  
Females   1 85 1    
Males 1 3 191 2    
Total 1 4 276 3    
Females       5    
Males     4 58    
Total     4 63    
Grand total 1 4 276 7 63 351
Australian Antarctic Division Senior Executive Service as at 30 June 2002
  Male Female Total
Band 1 2 1 3
Band 2 1   1
Band 3      
Total 3 1 4
There were no commencements, cessations, transfers or promotions of Australian Antarctic Division Senior Executive Service officers in 2001-02.