OPSSC - Annual Compliance Report 2003 by nyb13813

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									 COMMISSIONER FOR PUBLIC SECTOR STANDARDS




                                    MISSION
   To achieve better practice within public authorities in people management,
workforce diversity and ethical behaviour through education, capacity building and
                              independent oversight




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                              44 St Georges Terrace
                                Perth WA 6000


                          Telephone:    (08) 9260 6600
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                          email: pssc@opssc.wa.gov.au

                            http://www.wa.gov.au/opssc/

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    Cover: Photographs of Parliament House courtesy of Gondwana Photo Art.
         Commissioner for Public Sector Standards



THE SPEAKER                                                     THE PRESIDENT
LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY                                       LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL




ANNUAL COMPLIANCE REPORT FOR 2003

I submit to Parliament my Annual Compliance Report for 2003 in accordance with
section 21(1)(i) of the Public Sector Management Act 1994. This is the eighth
Annual Compliance Report.

The purpose of the report is to inform Parliament about the extent of compliance or
non-compliance with:
    •   The principles of merit, equity and integrity
    •   The Public Sector Standards in Human Resource Management (HRM
        standards)
    •   The Western Australian Public Sector Code of Ethics
    •   Codes of conduct established by public sector bodies.

The report primarily covers the period from 1 July 2002 to 30 June 2003. Where
appropriate, information from prior years has been included for the purposes of
reporting information not included in previous reports, providing updates on actions
taken in response to previous recommendations, or providing comparisons over
time and across the sector.




Maxine Murray
COMMISSIONER FOR
PUBLIC SECTOR STANDARDS

31 January 2004
CONTENTS

The Year in Brief ..........................................................................................................5
             Commissioner’s Overview..............................................................................................5
             Executive Summary .......................................................................................................9
Compliance Monitoring Framework .........................................................................11
             Why Monitor Compliance? ...........................................................................................11
             Who is Monitored? .......................................................................................................11
             What is Monitored? ......................................................................................................12
             Focus of the Compliance Report .................................................................................13
             Compliance Framework ...............................................................................................13
             Monitoring Strategies ...................................................................................................14
Human Resource Management.................................................................................15
             HRM Commitment and Communication ......................................................................16
             HRM Integration and Monitoring ..................................................................................18
             Taking Action on HRM Non-Compliance .....................................................................22
Ethical Conduct..........................................................................................................27
             Ethics Commitment and Communication.....................................................................28
             Ethics Integration and Monitoring ................................................................................31
             Taking Action on Ethics Non-Compliance....................................................................37
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency.......................................................................39
             Premier; Minister for Public Sector Management; Federal Affairs; Science;
                  Citizenship and Multicultural Interests ..................................................................39
             Deputy Premier; Treasurer; Minister for Energy ..........................................................39
             Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; the Mid-West, Wheatbelt and
                  Great Southern .....................................................................................................40
             Minister for Local Government and Regional Development; Heritage; the
                  Kimberley, Pilbara and Gascoyne; Goldfields-Esperance....................................40
             Attorney General; Minister for Health; Electoral Affairs ...............................................41
             Minister for Consumer and Employment Protection; Indigenous Affairs; Minister
                  Assisting the Minister for Public Sector Management ..........................................42
             Minister for the Environment ........................................................................................42
             Minister for Police and Emergency Services; Justice; Community Safety ..................43
             Minister for Planning and Infrastructure .......................................................................43
             Minister for Education and Training .............................................................................44
             Minister for Community Development, Women’s Interests, Seniors and Youth;
                  Disability Services; Culture and the Arts...............................................................45
             Minister for Tourism; Small Business; Sport and Recreation; Peel and the
                  South West ...........................................................................................................45
             Minister for State Development....................................................................................45
             Minister for Housing and Works; Racing and Gaming; Government Enterprises;
                  Land Information ...................................................................................................46
APPENDICES .............................................................................................................47
             Appendix 1 – Enabling Legislation...............................................................................48
             Appendix 2 – HRM Standards and Ethical Codes .......................................................49
             Appendix 3 – Methods of Monitoring Compliance .......................................................50
             Appendix 4 – Glossary of Terms..................................................................................53
             Appendix 5 – Agency List and Index............................................................................55
                                                        Commissioner’s Overview


The Year in Brief
Commissioner’s Overview




                         Maxine Murray

                         Commissioner for
                         Public Sector Standards

   This compliance report covers my first full year as Commissioner for Public Sector
   Standards. In the Compliance Report for 2001-2002, I foreshadowed some changes
   to the way I intended to provide information to Parliament on compliance or non-
   compliance with human resource principles and standards and ethical principles
   and codes. This report provides a broader view of the extent of compliance across
   the sector than did earlier reports. It continues to provide information on specific
   matters about compliance dealt with by my Office.

   In this report, assessment of the extent of compliance has been based on a
   compliance framework that examines the actions of public sector bodies under
   three key headings:
       •   Setting and communicating values and codes of conduct and showing
           commitment to values, standards and codes.
       •   Integrating and monitoring of principles, standards and codes to achieve
           compliance.
       •   Dealing effectively with issues of non-compliance.


   Environmental Issues
   In assessing the extent of compliance I am mindful of the environment in which
   public sector bodies operate and current trends at the State, national and
   international level.
   National and International Trends
   In recent years national and international corporate collapses have highlighted the
   benefits of, and requirement for, a comprehensive ethical framework for conduct
   and integrity in both public and private organisations. Private sector organisations
   are recognising the need for demonstrably ethical corporate conduct and
   understand that this involves more than just having the right rules. It is about
   integrating ethical principles into all aspects of decision-making and action. As
   Justice Neville Owens noted in his report on the HIH insurance company collapse:
      There is no doubt that regulation is necessary: peace, order and good
      governance could not be achieved without it. But it would be a shame if the
      prescription of corporate governance models and standards of conduct for
      corporate officers became the beginning, the middle and the end of the
      decision making process.




                                                                                Page 5
The Year in Brief


          I think that all those who participated in the direction and management of
          public companies, as well as their professional advisors, need to identify and
          examine what they regard as the basic moral underpinning of their system of
          values. They must then apply those tenets in the decision making process.1

    Public sector agencies will need to make ethical conduct and good human resource
    management an integral and valued part of their business if they are to provide
    effective and trusted services for the community. Successful public organisations
    will be judged on the achievement of ethical outcomes in the treatment of
    customers and staff and the use of public resources. It will not be sufficient to show
    apparent compliance with a nominated set of rules.

    Changes in the WA Public Sector
    The requirements placed on government agencies by legislation and the challenges
    faced by those agencies in complying with these requirements, have probably never
    been greater. Public sector agencies work within a dynamic, challenging
    environment of changing policies, increasing public scrutiny, fiscal constraints,
    technological improvements, demands for increased efficiency, and well-informed
    employees and members of the community with high expectations of service
    delivery.

    When people are focussing on the need to act quickly and continually achieve
    results while implementing change, there is a risk that the achievement of good
    human resource management practices and the maintenance of ethical conduct will
    assume a lower priority. They may be seen as things that can be developed after
    major changes have been implemented. However, it is especially important during
    change to apply ethical practices and good human resource management if
    organisations are to be trusted by employees and the public over the long term.

    In order to embed ethical aspects of an agency’s business into all activities,
    employees, particularly managers, need to incorporate ethical considerations into
    the decision-making process. They also need to be willing and able to take
    appropriate action to prevent or address ethical concerns and to explore options
    when faced with competing values and ethical dilemmas. For this to occur,
    employees need to feel confident that ethical issues will be taken seriously and that
    it is safe to report possible irregularities in, or contraventions of, the ethical codes.

    Emerging Compliance Issues
    During the year a number of issues have arisen while dealing with matters
    associated with compliance to the principles, standards and codes in Western
    Australian public sector agencies.

    Raising Ethical Concerns
    A significant issue raised regularly with my Office, relates to how public sector
    employees and board members can deal with allegations of contraventions of the
    ethical codes with their employer or another authority without fear of retribution or
    negative consequences. The fear of a negative reception has been confirmed by
    the results of the climate survey administered by my Office. Only 47% of
    respondents believed people who reported wrongdoing were protected from
    victimisation or harassment and 21% of people who were aware of an occurrence of
    unethical behaviour did not report it.

    It is important that agencies develop a culture of openness and ongoing learning
    from mistakes. Agencies need to encourage staff to explore the ethical dimension of
    their decisions, to report contraventions of ethical codes and to be assured that
    such information is important to the organisation in maintaining a reputation for
    integrity. They also need to assure staff that victimisation of those who speak up will
    1
        Reported in the Weekend Australian – April 19-20, 2003, Page 20

    Page 6
                                                          Commissioner’s Overview


not be tolerated and that actions will be taken to ensure this does not occur.

The advent of the Public Interest Disclosure legislation in July 2003 provides a
legislative base for lodging disclosures and for providing protection to those who
make disclosures in the public interest. It is vital that this formal process signals to
public authorities, public sector employees and the general public that an integral
part of good government includes providing protection for people who come forward
to make genuine disclosures of wrongdoing.
The Merit Principle
A second issue relates to the operation of the merit principle. I am concerned by the
views of some, both internal and external to the sector, that merit selection no
longer exists in the public sector. A selection system must address merit and equity
considerations in a forthright way. Both merit and equity require the three steps of
definition, interpretation and application. Merit needs to be assessed systematically
and fairly. It also needs to be determined with an understanding of equity.

For example, merit and equity considerations in recruitment and selection can
include:
    •   Avoiding the use of restrictive criteria and onerous requirements, such as
        specifying a narrow range of work experience as a particular requirement.
    •   The testing or evidence sought from candidates. This can include physical,
        numeracy or literacy tests which do not adequately measure specific
        knowledge, skills and abilities required for a position.

All such considerations are taken into account in assessing compliance with merit
and equity principles and standards.
Conflict of Interest
Issues related to conflicts of interest have also been raised with my Office. These
have allowed me to form a view about the level of understanding about, and
compliance with, relevant provisions of ethical codes. There appears to be a
common understanding that where financial or personal gain is involved a clear
conflict of interest exists. The test for public officials is more stringent than this. The
work of the public sector is to serve the public good. Public officials are responsible
for carrying out this public duty.

As one public sector body has defined it, apparent conflict of interest is a

    situation where a member of the public would have reasonable cause to
    believe that a public official may be in conflict, even though he or she
    might not be.

There is an obligation not simply to obey the law but to act in a manner so
scrupulous that it will bear the closest public scrutiny. It is for this reason that my
office advises agencies and employees to always take an overly cautious approach
when deciding whether there could be a perception of a conflict of interest.

Professor Gerard Carney, one of Australia’s leading constitutional lawyers with
expertise in the area of ethics for public officials has expressed his views on dealing
with perceptions of a conflict of interest:

    Public integrity as an ideal which must be nurtured and safeguarded,
    describes the obligation of public officials to act always and exclusively
    in the public interest and not in the furtherance of their own personal
    interests…[C]onduct less heinous than that of corruption may…betray
    this trust. An example of this latter conduct is when a public official acts
    in the course of carrying out official duties in a way which also promotes
    his or her personal interests. Acting in this way, in the face of conflict of
    interest between one’s personal interest and the public interest,
    constitutes a betrayal of the public trust. But even if no betrayal in fact

                                                                                    Page 7
The Year in Brief


          occurs, it taints the decision and the decision-maker with allegations of
          impropriety. The dangers posed for the public interest by the existence
          of conflicts of interest on the part of public officials, whether the conflicts
          of interest are real or perceived to be real, demand the adoption of
          mechanisms which prevent such conflict arising or which resolve them if
          they do arise2.

    A number of cases brought to the attention of my office during the past year have
    revolved around this issue and highlighted the need to restate this principle and put
    it into practice.


    The Future
    In conclusion, this report has progressed our intention to focus on compliance and
    non-compliance in reporting to Parliament. I look forward to continued improvement
    in the measures used by agencies and my office to highlight the outcomes achieved
    by compliance, while maintaining my independent oversight of key issues relating to
    non-compliance.




    Maxine Murray
    COMMISSIONER FOR
    PUBLIC SECTOR STANDARDS




    2
        Carney G, “The Duty of Parliamentarians to Make Ad Hoc Disclosure of Public Interests”, (1991) 2
        Public Law Review 24, cited and endorsed by the High Court of Australia in Hot Holdings Limited v
        Creasy (2002) HCA (14 November 2002), at [157].

    Page 8
                                                               Executive Summary


Executive Summary
   This report is designed to provide an evaluation of compliance or non-compliance
   with the provisions of section 21 of the Public Sector Management Act 1994 (PSM
   Act). It forms part of the monitoring and reporting function of the Commissioner for
   Public Sector Standards.

Compliance Monitoring Framework
   Compliance is not an end in itself. It is required in order to achieve the key public
   policy objectives of building public trust and providing good governance. The
   Commissioner has a responsibility to monitor and report on the extent of
   compliance or non-compliance with human resource management and ethical
   principles, standards and codes by WA public sector bodies and employees.

   Assessment of the extent of compliance is based on two sources of information –
   agency self-reporting and independent oversight by the Commissioner. Three key
   elements of the actions of public sector bodies are examined. These are:
       •   Commitment and communication
       •   Integration and monitoring to achieve compliance
       •   Action on non-compliance.

Human Resource Management
   Highlights
   •   The majority of employees (72% of employee survey respondents) are aware
       of the HRM standards.
   •   Increases in diversity at all levels of the public sector workforce indicate that
       the application of merit and equity in human resource management is
       improving but agencies will need to be vigilant and encourage further
       improvement.
   •   Approximately two-thirds of breach of standard claims received by agencies
       are resolved within the agency. All agencies served with a breach of standards
       claim substantiated by the Commissioner provided appropriate relief to the
       claimant.

   Opportunities for Improvement
   •   There is a low level of awareness about the process of lodging a claim for
       breach of standards (other than the recruitment standard). Employees who are
       aggrieved tend not to use the process. There is a need for agencies to provide
       improved access to the breach claim process for all standards.
   •   There is still considerable room for improvement in building employee and
       public trust in the application of merit, equity and probity in the job selection
       process. Only half of employee survey respondents agreed that processes are
       fair and unbiased and only 40% considered that the process selected the best
       available candidate for the position.
   •   Less than 30% of survey respondents agree that decisions relating to transfers
       and secondments are decided upon fairly and 40% of respondents believed
       that favouritism plays a part in the selection for higher duties. These results
       indicate a need for transparent processes based on merit and equity in these
       activities.
   •   Most agencies do not report a comprehensive approach to internal assessment
       of compliance. There is considerable room for improvement in agency
       monitoring of compliance.

                                                                                 Page 9
The Year in Brief


Ethical Conduct
    Highlights
    •   There is widespread development of codes of conduct and many agencies are
        using multiple ways to communicate and promote the code to their employees.
        Around two thirds of agencies use at least three different ways to promote the
        code.
    •   Employees generally have positive perceptions about ethical leadership with
        79% of survey respondents indicating that their agency supports and
        encourages ethical conduct.
    •   In general, employees report positive perceptions about there being no
        favouritism in decision making, that their agency serves the public interest, that
        they generally feel respected by management and that gender and cultural
        diversity are welcomed.

    Opportunities for Improvement
    •   There is a low level of awareness about the Code of Ethics among employees
        and only 45% of survey respondents indicate they have read it, although a
        higher number (65%) are aware of their internal ethical policy guidelines.
        Considerable work needs to be done to inform public sector employees about
        the code and its relevance to them.
    •   While relatively few matters about ethical practices were raised, there are some
        weaknesses in dealing with matters associated with a conflict of interest.
        Agencies should ensure they have clear guidelines on conflict of interest and
        adequate procedures and controls in place to prevent and detect conflict of
        interest situations.
    •   There are some elements of good practice in the monitoring of compliance.
        However many agencies rely on the monitoring of individual transgressions as
        the main method of assessment. Compliance with the ethical principles and
        codes should not be seen in isolation from other regulatory requirements that
        are closely linked with achievement of compliance with the Code of Ethics.
        These include appropriate use of financial resources and performance
        measures, customer service, safety requirements, equal opportunity and
        appropriate administrative practices.
    •   Serious problems exist because just over half of employees who responded to
        the survey do not believe they would be protected from victimisation or
        harassment if they reported wrongdoing. Agencies should make employees
        aware of the action they can take to report unethical conduct, develop a work
        environment where employees feel safe to raise issues and provide assurance
        that victimisation will not be tolerated and act quickly to eliminate any
        occurrences.




    Page 10
                                                      Compliance Monitoring Framework


Compliance Monitoring Framework
Why Monitor Compliance?
   This report is designed to provide an evaluation of compliance or non-compliance
   with the relevant provisions of the Public Sector Management Act 1994 (PSM Act).
   It forms part of the monitoring and reporting function of the Commissioner for Public
   Sector Standards.

   Compliance is not an end in itself. It is required in order to achieve the key public
   policy objectives of building public trust and providing good governance. As
   succinctly stated in an OECD report:

         Public service is a public trust. Citizens expect public servants to serve in
         the public interest with fairness and to manage public employees and
         public resources properly on a daily basis. Fair, meritorious and reliable
         public services inspire public trust and create a favourable environment for
         businesses, thus contributing to well-functioning markets and economic
         growth as well as social and environmental well being. Public service
         standards and ethics are a prerequisite to, and underpin, public trust and
         are a keystone of good governance.3

   The primary responsibility for achieving compliance with the PSM Act lies with
   public sector bodies, their management and employees.

   Independent monitoring and reporting by the Commissioner for Public Sector
   Standards helps build and maintain public trust by allowing Parliament and the
   public to place more reliance on agency claims of compliance than would otherwise
   be possible. To be effective, this independent oversight needs to assess the
   achievement of intended policy outcomes.

Who is Monitored?
   The Commissioner’s monitoring and reporting role under the PSM Act applies to all
   public sector bodies. Public sector bodies include Western Australian ministerial
   offices, public sector agencies and organisations (agencies) established for a public
   purpose by law (including public boards and committees) and that are not
   specifically excluded by Schedule 1 of the PSM Act.

   As at 30 June 2003 there were 103 public sector agencies monitored by the
   OPSSC. In addition there were 529 public boards and committees. Most of the
   activity monitored by the Commissioner relates to public sector agencies, their
   management and employees. The trend in agency numbers in recent years is
   shown below.




                145       133                        Note: The decline in the last two
                                    103              years is due to amalgamations
                                                     arising from Machinery of
                                                     Government Changes.

               2000/01   2001/02   2002/03




   3
       Adapted from Building Public Trust: Ethics Measures in OECD Countries, OECD Public
       Management, Policy Brief Number 7, September 2000

                                                                                         Page 11
Compliance Monitoring Framework


What is Monitored?
    The Commissioner has a responsibility, under Section 21 of the PSM Act, to
    monitor and report on the extent of compliance or non-compliance by Western
    Australian public sector bodies and employees with:
        •     The general principles of human resource management covered by
              Sections 8(1)(a), (b) and (c) (the HRM principles)
        •     The general principles of official conduct covered by Section 9 (the ethical
              principles)
        •     The Public Sector Standards in Human Resource Management (the HRM
              standards)
        •     The Western Australian Public Sector Code of Ethics and codes of conduct
              developed by public sector bodies (the ethical codes).

    A summary of these principles, standards and codes is provided below. Further
    details are at Appendices 1 and 2.

    HRM Principles and Standards
    The key outcome of compliance with the HRM principles and standards is a public
    workforce made up of the most suitable available employees, who provide effective
    productivity and who trust that their treatment will be based on merit and equity and
    that there will be probity in human resource management decisions.

    In summary, the HRM principles are that selection is based on a proper assessment
    of merit and equity; human resource management powers are not based on
    nepotism or patronage and employees are to be treated fairly and consistently.

    Nine public sector standards in human resource management have been
    established. These cover Recruitment, Selection and Appointment, Transfer,
    Secondment, Performance Management, Redeployment, Termination, Discipline,
    Temporary Deployment (Acting) and Grievance Resolution.

    Ethical Principles and Ethical Codes
    The key outcome of compliance with the ethical principles and codes is trusted
    public institutions that serve the public interest with fairness, show respect for the
    people they deal with and manage public resources properly on a daily basis.

    The general principles of official conduct are that public sector bodies and
    employees comply with the PSM Act, other relevant legislation, the HRM standards
    and the ethical codes, act with integrity in the performance of their official duties and
    apply courtesy, sensitivity and consideration in their dealings with the public and
    employees.

    These principles form the basis of the Code of Ethics that covers:
        •     Justice – being impartial and using power fairly for the common good
        •     Respect for Persons – treating people honestly, courteously and fairly so
              that they maintain their dignity and their rights are upheld
        •     Responsible Care – protecting and managing with care the human, natural
              and financial resources of the State.




    Page 12
                                                             Compliance Monitoring Framework


Focus of the Compliance Report
       This report evaluates compliance in two areas:
            •    Human Resource Management covering HRM principles and standards
            •    Ethical Conduct covering ethical principles and codes.

       We have developed a compliance framework to guide our approach to the role of
       the Commissioner. This framework is a modification of a Regulatory Enforcement
       Pyramid developed and adapted by a number of researchers and agencies involved
       in regulatory practice.

       The report focuses on action by public sector bodies under the three key elements
       in the compliance framework:
            •    Educate and persuade to comply – Commitment and Communication
            •    Develop capacity to comply – Integration and monitoring to achieve
                 compliance
            •    Deter non-compliance – Action on Non-Compliance.

       It is based on two sources of information. The first is information reported to the
       Commissioner by public sector agencies (agency self-reporting). The second is
       information from the Commissioner’s independent monitoring activities
       (Commissioner’s oversight).




                                   Compliance Framework

Actions of the Commissioner                                            Actions of Public Sector Bodies




Independent Oversight                                                                           Action on
Examine, monitor and report on                                                            Non-Compliance
compliance or non-compliance                                                               Deal effectively with
                                                     Deter                            issues of non-compliance
Manage breach of standards claims                    Non-
                                                   Compliance

Public Authority                                                                Integration and Monitoring
Development                                                                             Integrate standards and
Assist public sector to build capacity           Develop Capacity                              codes to achieve
to integrate HRM and ethical                                                                         compliance
                                                    to Comply
principles, standards and codes into
decision making and practices                                                           Monitor and implement
                                                                                       continuous improvement


                                                                                          Commitment and
Codes and Standards
Set and communicate ethical                                                                Communication
                                            Educate and Persuade                   Set and communicate values
codes and HRM standards
                                                 to Comply                                and codes of conduct

                                                                                    Demonstrate commitment to
                                                                                    values, standards and codes


                                         Merit    Equity Probity    Integrity


                                                                                                  Page 13
Compliance Monitoring Framework


    Monitoring Strategies
    Each year public sector agencies are required to report on compliance to the
    Commissioner. A number of strategies are used by the Commissioner to provide an
    independent evaluation of the extent of compliance and non-compliance.
    Information obtained through this independent oversight, used in conjunction with
    information from agency reports, allows a better assessment than would be
    possible using a single source of information.

    The monitoring strategies used this year are summarised below. Further details of
    the strategies and the criteria for selecting agencies and issues for review are
    provided in Appendix 3.



                          •   Methods of assessing compliance and their achievement of
                              compliance with the HRM principles and standards
                          •   Methods of assessing compliance and their achievement of
     Agency Self-             compliance with the ethical principles and codes
     reporting
                          •   Whether they have a code of conduct and how the ethical codes are
                              communicated to employees
                          •   The number of claims of breach of HRM standards handled within
                              the agency and the outcome of those claims
                          •   The number of allegations of non-compliance with the ethical codes.


                          •   Regular agency reviews on a cycle of approximately four years. This
                              includes aggregated information available from the 27,421 public
                              sector employees who responded to climate surveys.
     Commissioner’s       •   Specific agency reviews involving in-depth examinations of specific
     Oversight                issues
                          •   Thematic reviews of a particular issue over a range of agencies
                          •   Breach of Standard claims
                          •   Outcome-based Measures of Compliance
                          •   Complaints and allegations of non-compliance.



    Limitations of Monitoring Strategies
    The monitoring processes used by the Commissioner are a combination of broad-
    based measures and in-depth examinations of selected samples. The use of a
    range of tools provides a better assessment than would be possible using a single
    methodology. There are, nevertheless, limitations with any measurement or review
    process and there can be no guarantee of the validity or reliability of the information
    obtained from agencies. This means it is likely that not all compliance and non-
    compliance issues will be identified. In addition, judgement is integral to the work
    undertaken in these reviews and most information obtained is indicative and
    persuasive, rather than proof of the extent of compliance or non-compliance.
    Working with Agencies
    The Commissioner’s role in monitoring and reporting is to provide an independent
    oversight of the extent of compliance and non-compliance with the HRM principles
    and standards and the ethical principles and codes. The cooperation and
    commitment of public sector agencies and employees is important if the monitoring
    role is to be effective. A cooperative approach also enables the monitoring process
    to be undertaken in a way that will assist agencies to achieve improved compliance.




    Page 14
                                                     Human Resource Management


Human Resource Management


 Highlights
  The majority of employees (72% of employee survey respondents) are
  aware of the HRM standards.

  Increases in diversity at all levels of the public sector workforce indicate that
  the application of merit and equity in human resource management is
  improving but agencies will need to be vigilant and encourage further
  improvement.

  Approximately two-thirds of breach of standard claims received by agencies
  are resolved within the agency. All agencies served with a breach of
  standards claim substantiated by the Commissioner provided appropriate
  relief to the claimant.




 Opportunities for Improvement
  There is a low level of awareness about the process of lodging a claim for
  breach of standards (other than the recruitment standard). Employees who
  are aggrieved tend not to use the process. There is a need for agencies to
  provide improved access to the breach claim process for all standards.

  There is still considerable room for improvement in building employee and
  public trust in the application of merit, equity and probity in the job selection
  process. Only half of employee survey respondents agreed that processes
  are fair and unbiased and only 40% considered that the process selected
  the best available candidate for the position.

  Less than 30% of survey respondents agree that decisions relating to
  transfers and secondments are decided upon fairly and 40% of respondents
  believed that favouritism plays a part in the selection for higher duties.
  These results indicate a need for transparent processes based on merit and
  equity in these activities.

  Most agencies do not report a comprehensive approach to internal
  assessment of compliance. There is considerable room for improvement in
  agency monitoring of compliance.




                                                                                Page 15
Human Resource Management


HRM Commitment and Communication

   This section discusses the actions taken to educate and persuade employees to
   comply with the HRM principles and standards – the first element in the compliance
   framework.




                               Commitment and Communication
      Educate & Persuade
          to Comply
                               Set and communicate practices to meet HRM principles and standards
                               Demonstrate commitment to HRM principles and standards




   Agency Self-reporting
   In their yearly report, agencies were asked to advise how they assessed
   compliance with the HRM principles and standards. While they were not specifically
   asked how they informed staff about the HRM standards, some agencies indicated
   that they informed employees via:
      •      Their human resource policies
      •      Their quality assurance systems
      •      Induction processes
      •      More informal communication channels, such as raising issues at staff
             meetings.




   Page 16
                                               HRM Commitment and Communication



Commissioner’s Oversight
In the climate survey, there were two questions relating to employee awareness of
the HRM standards and the courses of action available to staff if they felt aggrieved
by a decision. In order to obtain a picture of the sector as a whole, the results of
surveys over a period of up to five years have been included. While it is possible
that there has been some improvement in agencies surveyed earlier, the results of
surveys conducted in the current year show a similar pattern.


                     Percentage of Respondents Answering Yes
                       (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)




Are you aware that Human Resource
                                                                                          72%
standards for the public sector exist?


Do you understand what courses of
action are available to you should you                                           47%
disagree with a job selection decision?




 Awareness of the HRM standards
 These results indicate that while most employees were aware of the HRM
 standards (72%), there is still a large minority (28%) that were not. Agencies need
 to improve their communication with employees in this area so that all staff are
 informed.

 This need for better communication is supported by the in-depth focus group
 reviews conducted by the OPSSC. Information from these reviews indicates that
 many employees are aware of the policies and standards within their own
 organisations, rather than the HRM standards. This highlights the importance of
 internal policies including reference to, and being consistent with, the HRM
 standards.

 Awareness of Avenues to Raise Concerns
 Employee knowledge of avenues available through which they can raise concerns
 about non-compliance is less positive. Less than half of respondents (47%) were
 aware of courses of action to take if they disagree with a selection decision. The
 Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Standard is one where a relatively high
 level of awareness might have been expected, as the Regulations require that
 employees be informed how to make a breach claim when they are advised of the
 outcome of the selection process. It is therefore likely that the level of awareness
 about action that can be taken about the other HRM standards is even lower.

 This view is confirmed by information gathered from focus groups during the in-
 depth reviews, from employee contacts with the OPSSC and from employees
 making breach of standard claims and enquiries. All these sources indicate that
 the awareness of avenues through which to raise concerns about HRM standards
 other than those related to recruitment, is very low. In some instances knowledge
 of the HRM standards and the breach process appears to be limited to those
 employees working in the HR field. There is clearly a need for agencies to provide
 all employees with better information about how to raise concerns if they consider
 there has been a breach of any of the standards.




                                                                                       Page 17
Human Resource Management


HRM Integration and Monitoring
   This section outlines the actions taken to develop the capacity to comply with HRM
   standards and principles – the second element in the compliance framework.




               Develop          Integration and Monitoring
               Capacity         Integrate HRM principles and standards to achieve compliance
              to Comply         Monitor and implement continuous improvement




   Agency Self-reporting
   Agencies provided the Commissioner with information regarding the methods they
   used to assess their compliance with the HRM standards and an assessment of the
   extent of their compliance. The chart below shows the percentage of agencies
   reporting use of various methods of assessment. It is possible that some agencies
   have not reported all the methods they used. The chart, nevertheless, gives an
   indication of those methods of assessment considered most important by agencies.

                                % Agencies Using Assessment Method
                                             (Total number of Agencies =103)

    Asserted compliance with no
    further explanation
                                                          8%

    Lack of substantiated breaches
                                                                                39%
    indicates compliance
    Explanation of breaches and relief                 5%
    provided shows level of compliance
    Policies, checklists and /or training                                                  51%
    for staff enable compliance
    Independent checks of individual                                           36%
    transactions ensure compliance
    Reviews or audits show level of                                                  44%
    compliance
    Staff feedback through surveys or exit                     12%
    interviews shows compliance
    Analysis of information enables system                                                     52%
    improvements
    Description of Improvements
                                                         7%
    identified and initiated
    Use three or more methods to                                                     44%
    determine extent of compliance


   Some agencies appeared to adopt a minimalist and reactive approach (27% either
   simply asserted compliance or only used the absence of substantiated breaches to
   assess compliance). More proactive agencies showed a comprehensive approach
   that used ongoing reviews, analysis and checking of policies and transactions.


    It is of concern that many agencies have not reported a more proactive and
    outcome focussed approach to assessment of compliance with the HRM principles
    and standards. Few agencies report outcome focussed methods such as staff
    feedback to assess compliance and even fewer (only 7%) have identified areas for
    improvement, even though it is to be expected that even the best practices will
    have scope for ongoing improvement.


   Page 18
                                                                 HRM Integration and Monitoring



  Commissioner’s Oversight
  Fair Application of HRM standards

  In the climate survey there are several questions relating to merit and fair
  application of the different HRM standards. Survey responses are from a period of
  up to five years. While there may have been some improvement in agencies
  surveyed earlier, the results of surveys conducted this year show similar patterns.

                           Standards in Human Resource Management
                                (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)

Selection Standard
Selection panels in this workplace select the
best available candidate
Generally speaking, the recruitment and
selection processes of this workplace are
fair and unbiased
Acting Standard
Favouritism does NOT play a part in
selection for higher duties
Transfer Standard
Decisions to transfer staff are decided
                   4
upon fairly
Secondment Standard
Decisions to second employees to equivalent
or higher positions are decided upon fairly

Performance Management Standard
Your performance is fairly assessed in
your workplace
                                                   0%            20%            40%            60%       80%        100%

                                              Agree strongly                              Agree somewhat
                                              Neither agree nor disagree                  Disagree somewhat
                                              Disagree strongly                           Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank


  A perception of fairness is an indication that decisions show equity and probity.
  These perceptions indicate that, despite agencies reporting that they comply with
  the HRM standards, their employees have a different view in some areas.


      Recruitment, Selection and Appointment - Only 40% of respondents agreed
      that selection panels chose the best available candidate for the position and only
      50% agreed that recruitment and selection processes were fair and unbiased.
      These results indicate that a substantial proportion of employees did not trust that
      selection decisions are based on merit, and there is also a need to build employee
      trust in the fairness of the recruitment process.

      Other HRM standards – In the area of performance management, it appears
      many employees do trust the process. However there is cause for concern about
      transfers and secondments (less than 30% of respondents agreed that the
      processes were fair) and acting (nearly 40% of respondents believed that
      favouritism plays a part in selection for higher duties). This indicates there is not a
      high level of trust in the fairness of these processes – a matter of particular
      concern because, in many cases, permanent recruitment occurs after a period of
      acting or secondment.

  4
        In the survey the question used was Favouritism plays a part in the selection for higher duties and
        disagreement is the desired response. For the purposes of this report the question has been
        reversed to enable consistent interpretation of positive statements.


                                                                                                        Page 19
 Human Resource Management


        Merit and Equity Outcomes

        The degree to which the workforce of public authorities is showing a better match
        with the demographic profile of the Western Australian community at all levels of
        employment indicates how well merit and equity are operating in the public sector.
        Under representation of some groups in the workforce, or at the higher levels, is an
        indication that factors other than merit are operating in the selection process. It may
        also mean that people are not being treated equitably in the recruitment process, or
        in getting access to development opportunities.

        Equity can be measured by the representation (%) of different groups and by their
        distribution across the hierarchy of the workforce. The Equity Index measures the
        distribution of all employees across different levels in a public authority and
        compares it to the distribution of the group under consideration. The ideal Equity
        Index is 100, indicating that the group has the same distribution as the workforce as
        a whole. If there is compression at the lower levels the Index is less than 100.

        The profile shown in the matrix below shows people with disabilities, Indigenous
        Australians and people from culturally diverse backgrounds are under represented.
        Women and Indigenous Australians are concentrated at the lower levels.



             200
                         A                                                     B                    Priorities
                                                                                       A Recruiting more people
                                                                                         from the group
                                                                                       B Consider better match with
Distribution                   Cultural                                                  the community or customer
(Equity Index)                 Diversity                                                 profile
             100
                              People with                                              C Recruiting more people
                              Disabilities                                               from the group and getting
                                                                                         more of the group at senior
                                                            Women                        levels
                                Indigenous                                             D Getting more people from
                                Australians                                              the group at senior levels
                 0   C                                                         D
                     0                          Matches                       Double
                                              Community %                   Community %
                                             Representation



                                                    Representation                  Distribution
         Public Sector                             %             %         Equity Index    Equity Index
                                                  2002          2003          2002            2003

         Women                                57% (FTEs)      58% (FTEs)       55               58
         Culturally Diverse                     4.8%            6.0%          >100             >100
         Indigenous Australians                  2.2%           2.4%           24                  30
         People with Disabilities                1.2%           1.4%           94                  81




         If recruitment and other processes are based on merit and equity there should be
         an ongoing improvement in the representation and distribution of diversity groups.
         The improvements in diversity at all levels of the demographic profile of the public
         sector workforce indicate that the application of merit and equity in human
         resource management is getting better. The under representation that remains
         means that agencies need to be vigilant and address issues as they arise.


        Page 20
                                                         HRM Integration and Monitoring



Contacts with the OPSSC

Public employees, Members of Parliament and the public make contact with the
OPSSC to raise issues and concerns. During 2002/2003 there were 1312 human
resource management issues raised in this way (with some people raising more
than one issue). Of these, 894 related to the HRM standards and 247 to the
regulations for handling breach of standards claims. The proportion of contacts for
each standard and the main issues raised are shown below.


                  Percentage of Contacts Relating to each Standard
                                 (Total number of Standards contacts = 894)



                        Acting            7%
                  Discipline            2%
                   Grievance                      15%

   Performance Management               3%
                 Redundancy             2%
      Recruitment, Selection
           and Appointment
                                                                                     59%

                Secondment              3%
                 Termination            3%
                    Transfer             6%

                                 0%      10%       20%      30%       40%     50%   60%    70%




             Standard                                  Main Issues Raised

                                    •     Job advertising
    Recruitment, Selection          •     The approach to recruitment
    and Appointment                 •     Assessment of applicants
                                    •     The final selection decision
                                    •     Authority to transfer
                                    •     Consultation
    Transfers
                                    •     Taking into account employee interests
                                    •     Employment conditions
                                    •     The acting period
    Acting                          •     Comparative assessment
                                    •     Documentation of the process
                                    •     Lodging a grievance
                                    •     Suitability of the method used
    Grievances
                                    •     Application of the process
                                    •     The ability to review the process




 The nature of the contacts with the OPSSC confirms information from other
 sources, such as breach claims (see later in this section). This shows that
 recruitment, selection and appointment, grievances and acting are key issues for
 employees and agencies.



                                                                                          Page 21
Human Resource Management


Taking Action on HRM Non-Compliance
   This section highlights the actions taken to deter non-compliance with the HRM
   standards and principles – the third element in the compliance framework.


               Deter         Action on Non-Compliance
               Non-          Deal effectively with issues of non-compliance
             Compliance      with HRM principles and standards




   Agency Self-reporting
   Information was sought from agencies on breach of standard claims made in the
   agency and the outcome of those claims. In total, 318 claims were made in 2002-
   2003 and about two thirds of agencies (67 out of 103) reported that there were no
   breach of standards claims in their agency. The following chart indicates the
   number of claims made against each standard.

                    Breach of Standards Claims Handled in Agencies

     Recruitment, Selection & Appt                                                       222
             Grievance Resolution                      66
        Performance Management               11
   Temporary Deployment (Acting)             9
                      Termination        5
                          Transfer       4
                   Redeployment          1
                     Secondment          0
                                     0            50        100        150     200         250

   Where agencies did receive claims, 187 (59%) were withdrawn or resolved within
   the agency and about one third (36%) were referred to the OPSSC. The following
   chart shows the outcomes of the claims handled by agencies.

               Outcome of Breach of Standards Claims Handled in Agencies

             Withdrawn in agency                                              83

              Resolved in agency                                                         104

               Pending in agency                  15

              Referred to OPSSC                                                                116

                                     0            20   40         60     80        100     120       140


    Most agencies do not receive breach of standards claims and, where they do, the
    claims can often be handled within the agency. The capacity to resolve matters
    within the agency indicates that the processes used are effective. However, the
    low number of breach claims made needs to be considered in conjunction with the
    earlier information about lack of employee awareness about how to take action
    when they feel aggrieved.


   Page 22
                                            Taking Action on HRM Non-Compliance



Commissioner’s Oversight

Employee Willingness to take Action if Aggrieved

The climate survey includes questions that relate to the willingness of employees to
take action if they are aggrieved about a job selection decision.




                      Percentage of Respondents Answering Yes
                           (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)


  If you felt aggrieved by a selection
  process or decision, would you                                                      64%
  take action?

 Have you ever felt aggrieved by a
 selection process or decision in the                              22%
 previous twelve months?


  If yes did you take action?                        5%




As described earlier, less than half of the respondents (47%) were aware of courses
of action to take if they disagree with a job selection decision. The information
shown above indicates there was also a reluctance to take action if people were
aggrieved by a selection decision. While 64% of respondents indicated they would
take action if aggrieved, of the 22% that did feel aggrieved in the last twelve months
only 5% (less than one in five of those people) actually took action.




 This information indicates there is not a high level of awareness of, or trust in, the
 processes used when employees are concerned about the selection process. The
 reluctance of aggrieved employees to take action means that the mere absence of
 formal claims is not necessarily an indication of compliance with the HRM
 principles and standards. It is, therefore, of concern that a number of agencies use
 the lack of substantiated breach claims as a major part of their assessment of
 compliance.

 There is clearly a need for agencies to provide employees with better information
 about how to raise concerns if they think there has been a breach of any of the
 standards. It is also necessary to build greater trust in the breach process, so that
 employees become more willing to use it. Employees have indicated, through
 feedback from focus groups, two key reasons for not using the process. These are
 that they feel no changes will be made, or they fear the consequences to
 themselves if they raise a concern.




                                                                                     Page 23
Human Resource Management


   Breach of Standard Claims

   During 2002-2003, there were 119 alleged breaches of the standards handled by
   the Office (including several that were carried over from the previous year). This
   continues an ongoing decline in claims since 1998/99. The number of substantiated
   breaches has also been in decline since 98/99, although there was a slight increase
   this year. The following chart shows the trend for claims received and breach claims
   that were substantiated.


                 Number of Breach of Standard Claims Referred to the
               Commissioner and Breaches of Standard Found 1995-2003

     250
                                            236
                      221
                                225
     200
                                                   197
                                                           185
     150

                                                                       130      119
     100
                                 78
                                            75
                 67    59
                                                    48
      50
                                                                 37
                                                                               10
               21                                                       3
        0
             95/96    96/97    97/98    98/99     99/00    00/01      01/02   02/03


                                       Claims       Breaches


   Of the 119 claims referred to the Office during the reporting period 85% related to
   the Recruitment, Selection and Appointment standard. Of the remaining claims, 8%
   related to the Grievance Resolution Standard. The remaining 7% of claims related
   equally to the Transfer and Acting Standards.

   Approximately 20% of claims examined were referred for a full review of the facts
   and circumstances. Following the reviews, the Commissioner determined ten
   breaches of standards, two against the Grievance Resolution standard and the
   remaining eight against the Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Standard. All
   agencies concerned provided relief to the successful claimants.


    The relatively large percentage of claims against the Recruitment, Selection and
    Appointment Standard appears consistent with the number of changes to the
    structure and staffing of departments and the subsequent advertising of positions.
    The substantiated breaches, as a percentage of this activity, are relatively few.

    It should be noted that the drop in claim numbers referred to the Commissioner in
    2001/2002 may be related partly to the changes in the Regulations. The revised
    Regulations have enabled agencies to handle claims internally in the first instance.
    Under these Regulations, about two thirds of claims are resolved within the
    agency and are, therefore, not referred to the OPSSC.




   Page 24
                                    Taking Action on HRM Non-Compliance



Substantiated Breaches

Breach of standards claims handled by the OPSSC provide some insight into areas
of non-compliance in 2002/2003. There are ten substantiated breaches based on
five processes, some with multiple claimants. Four relate to the Recruitment,
Selection and Appointment standard and one to the Grievance standard. The key
issues are shown below.


                   •   Generic tests that were not related to the specific job
                       requirements were used in the selection process.

 Recruitment       •   There was reliance on written applications when the job did not
 Selection and         require that level of writing skills.
 Appointment       •   Documentation was insufficient to enable a review of the
                       selection decision.
                   •   During interview preparation time, an internal applicant had
                       access to Departmental information that was not available to
                       external applicants.

 Grievance         •   The people about whom a grievance was lodged were not
 Resolution            informed of their rights.
                   •   Allegations were not corroborated and information that was not
                       related to the grievance was used.
                   •   The process was not documented properly.


More detailed case studies of substantiated breaches are included in the section on
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency.

Case Studies on Investigations
Out of Time Breach of Grievance Standard Claim
In 2002, the Department of the Premier and Cabinet investigated a grievance
lodged by an employee. The employee claimed subsequently that he was not
advised of his rights to access the Public Sector Management (Examination and
Review Procedures) Regulations 2001. He also claimed he had concerns about
matters related to the grievance and how it was dealt with. His concerns included
his inability to access the breach of standards process due to the expiry of time
available to make a claim stated in the regulations.

The Commissioner determined that it was appropriate to provide the claimant with a
process whereby his concerns could be considered by an independent party. An
investigation into the claimant’s concerns was conducted and no matters of non-
compliance were identified. Factors in this case were the employee’s lack of
awareness of his rights and the very restricted timeframes for making claims in the
regulations. As a result, the employee was unable to access the process that allows
for an independent review of the facts and circumstances surrounding a breach of
standard claim.


 A review of the Regulations in relation to their efficiency and effectiveness in
 dealing with claims of a breach of the standards is being undertaken. This review
 will consider changing aspects of the regulatory process, for example, by providing
 discretion in certain circumstances for the Commissioner to extend the time limit
 provided for public sector employees to submit claims against the standards.




                                                                            Page 25
Human Resource Management


   Follow-up Report on Breach of Grievance Standard Relief
   In the 2000/01 Annual Compliance Report to Parliament a case was reported where
   a claimant had raised a grievance with the Department of Education. She was
   directed to communicate with her principal about the grievance while the
   Department directed the principal not to communicate with the claimant. In this
   matter, under the regulations, the reviewer found that the Grievance Resolution
   standard had been breached. The reviewer recommended that the grievance
   process be implemented with responsibility for the process to be given to parties not
   involved in the grievance. In the Commissioner’s Compliance Report of 2000/01 it
   was reported: “In response to the finding, the Department resumed the grievance
   process with alternative staff”.

   Subsequent information and follow-up revealed that the Department did not
   implement the recommendation of the reviewer. The Department (now the
   Department of Education and Training) acknowledged that it did not appropriately
   address the recommendation and considered that the passage of time since the
   original grievance meant it was impractical to do so. An offer by the Department to
   reimburse administrative costs incurred by the complainant as the grievance was
   pursued is yet to be resolved.


    This case demonstrates that, where grievances are not dealt with promptly, trust
    between employees and agencies can be adversely affected and result in
    increased resource and financial costs to agencies. In this example, failure to
    implement the recommendation, as agreed by the agency in 2001, exacerbated
    the situation. The failure of Departments to adequately implement agreed
    recommendations in relation to identified breaches provides no relief to claimants.
    It also increases the likelihood of the Departments being exposed to additional
    cost risks. It is important that agencies implement systems to provide assurance
    that agreed recommendations will be actioned.




   Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC)
   An in-depth review of the ACC was undertaken after 12 staff raised issues. Details
   of issues and recommendations were outlined in a report submitted to Parliament
   on 16 April 2003.

   Following the review, the ACC reported that it had reviewed its performance
   management system; provided training in dealing with bullying, sexist behaviour
   and victimisation in the workplace; amended job descriptions to place the onus on
   managers and supervisors to promptly address inappropriate behaviour by staff;
   and taken steps to ensure where there was a potential or actual conflict of interest,
   the person concerned would be managed by a supervisor not related to them.




   Page 26
                                                                        Ethical Conduct



Ethical Conduct

Highlights

    There is widespread development of codes of conduct and many agencies
    are using multiple ways to communicate and promote the code to their
    employees. Around two thirds of agencies use at least three different ways
    to promote the code.

    Employees generally have positive perceptions about ethical leadership
    with 79% of survey respondents indicating that their agency supports and
    encourages ethical conduct.

    In general employees report positive perceptions about there being no
    favouritism in decision making, that their agency serves the public interest,
    that they generally feel respected by management and that gender and
    cultural diversity are welcomed.


Opportunities for Improvement

    There is a low level of awareness about the Code of Ethics among
    employees and only 45% of survey respondents indicate they have read it,
    although a higher number (65%) are aware of their internal ethical policy
    guidelines. Considerable work needs to be done to inform public sector
    employees about the code and its relevance to them.

    While relatively few matters about ethical practices were raised, there are
    some weaknesses in dealing with matters associated with a conflict of
    interest. Agencies should ensure they have clear guidelines on conflict of
    interest and adequate procedures and controls in place to prevent and
    detect conflict of interest situations.

    There are some elements of good practice in the monitoring of compliance.
    However many agencies rely on the monitoring of individual transgressions
    as the main method of assessment. Compliance with the ethical principles
    and codes should not be seen in isolation from other regulatory
    requirements that are closely linked with achievement of compliance with
    the Code of Ethics. These include appropriate use of financial resources
    and performance measures, customer service, safety requirements, equal
    opportunity and appropriate administrative practices.

    Serious problems exist because just over half of employees who responded
    to the survey do not believe they would be protected from victimisation or
    harassment if they reported wrongdoing. Agencies should make employees
    aware of the action they can take to report unethical conduct, develop a
    work environment where employees feel safe to raise issues and provide
    assurance that victimisation will not be tolerated and act quickly to eliminate
    any occurrences.




                                                                                Page 27
Ethical Conduct


Ethics Commitment and Communication
    This section discusses the actions taken to educate and persuade employees to
    comply with the ethical principles and codes – the first step in the compliance
    framework.




        Educate & Persuade          Commitment and Communication
            to Comply               Set and communicate values and codes of conduct
                                    Demonstrate commitment to values and ethical codes


    Agency Self-Reporting
    Developing Codes of Conduct
    Agencies were asked to provide information regarding their code of conduct and the
    methods used to communicate it to employees. Almost all (95%) reported that they
    have a code of conduct to complement the Code of Ethics. Of the five agencies
    without a code, one is currently combining several codes following an
    amalgamation of agencies. The other four are small agencies with under 50 staff.

    Over the past few years government boards and committees have been
    encouraged to adopt codes of conduct. Of the 529 public boards and committees as
    at June 2003, 64% have advised the OPSSC that they have codes of conduct.
    Communicating and Promoting the Ethical Codes
    Analysis of information provided by agencies shows they have used a reasonably
    broad range of methods to communicate their values and ethical codes. The main
    methods used are shown in the chart below. In addition to those listed the other
    methods used included internal newsletters, internal e-mails, fliers on notice boards
    and communication during reviews of the code. One agency reported including the
    code with letters of offer of employment and one sends it out with payslips.

                 Methods Used to Communicate the Code of Conduct
                                   (Total number of agencies = 103)

          Provided to new employees                                                       88

                             Intranet                                           59

                       Staff meetings                                      52

  Signed off by staff when commencing                                 40

                       Staff handouts                                 39

                             Website              14

                               Other                              38

                                        0          20           40        60         80        100
                                                                      Number


     There appears to be widespread development of codes of conduct in public bodies
     and agencies are using multiple ways to communicate and promote the code to
     their employees. About two thirds of agencies use at least three different ways to
     promote the code, indicating many organisations are aware that a broad range of
     communication methods should be used to help ensure a high level of awareness.



    Page 28
                                                 Ethics Commitment and Communication



  Commissioner’s Oversight
  Awareness of the Ethical Codes

  While agency self-reporting provides an insight into the development of their code
  of conduct and methods of communication, the results of the climate surveys
  conducted by the OPSSC provide an independent oversight of the extent of the
  achievement of this element of compliance.

  The following chart shows the level of awareness by public sector employees of the
  ethical codes and courses of action available to report unethical behaviour. While
  some of these responses may be several years old, an examination of surveys
  conducted in the last year shows similar results indicating that this information
  remains relevant.




                        Percentage of Respondents Answering Yes
                             (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)




Are you aware of your agency's ethical                                                                   65%
policy guidelines?

Have you read the WA Public Sector                                                           45%
Code of Ethics?

Do you know what course of action is
                                                                                   35%
available to report unethical behaviour?

                                                   0%               20%                40%         60%         80%




   It is of concern that only 45% of the respondents answered “yes” when asked
   Have you read the WA Public Sector Code of Ethics? It appears there is still
   considerable work to be done to communicate the Code of Ethics and its
   relevance to the public sector.

   On a more positive note, 65% of respondents answered “yes” when asked if they
   were aware of their agency’s ethical policy guidelines. This highlights the
   importance of agencies embedding the Code of Ethics into their internal values,
   codes and policies.




                                                                                                   Page 29
Ethical Conduct


    Ethical Leadership

    Setting and communicating values requires a multi-faceted approach. For
    organisations to really breathe life into their codes, leaders and staff have an active
    role to play in making explicit the organisation’s values and modelling the
    behaviours implicit in the codes. Leaders need to take every opportunity to
    communicate to all staff the importance of the ethical dimension of their work.

    The extent of the achievement of this leadership role is also shown by the
    responses to climate survey questions relating to leadership in communicating and
    promoting integrity in official conduct as shown in the chart below.




                                              Ethical Leadership
                                 (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)



   Your management leads by
   example in ethical behaviour


    Management monitors ethical
    conduct



    Management supports &
    encourages ethical conduct


                                     0%             20%             40%             60%       80%        100%

                                      Agree strongly                           Agree somewhat
                                      Neither agree nor disagree               Disagree somewhat
                                      Disagree strongly                        Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank




     Leadership is vital in establishing an agency’s ethical culture.

     There are a number of positive indicators of the ethical climate within the public
     sector and of the role public sector leaders play in nurturing an adherence to
     organisational and public sector values and ethical principles and codes. There
     was quite strong support for the notion that management leads by example. A high
     percentage (79%) of respondents indicated that their agency encourages ethical
     behaviour by all employees. Slightly more than 50% of employees surveyed
     agreed that their management leads by example in ethical behaviour.

     It is important for employees to see that their senior managers are taking the Code
     of Ethics and code of conduct seriously and acting consistently on the basis of
     these.




    Page 30
                                                              Ethics Integration and Monitoring


Ethics Integration and Monitoring
   This section outlines the actions taken to develop the capacity to comply with the
   ethical principles and codes - the second element in the compliance framework.




               Develop          Integration and Monitoring
               Capacity         Integrate ethical principles and codes to achieve compliance
              to Comply         Monitor and implement continuous improvement




   Agency Self-reporting
   Agencies were asked what methods they used to assess compliance and the
   outcome of that assessment. The methods of assessing compliance fell into the
   main themes summarised in the following chart.

                                  % Agencies Using Assessment Method
                                             (total number of agencies =103)


    Asserted compliance with no further explanation              2%

    Lack of substantiated breaches, grievances
                                                                                                               38%
    or discipline issues indicates compliance

    Explanation of substantiated breaches and action                4%
    shows level of compliance
    Prominence of codes and/or values                                                                        34%
    indicates compliance
    Internal controls and policies provide                                           15%
    independent checks

    Reviews or audits show level of compliance                                                   25%

   Oversight by management and analysis of
   issues prevent irregularities                                                                                   40%

    Assessment of grievances and breach claims                             9%
    enables system improvements

    Staff surveys and/or exit interviews show compliance                                   19%

    Customer survey or feedback indicates compliance                           10%


    Description of improvements identified and initiated                 7%

    Use three or more methods to determine extent                                                      30%
    of compliance




     In monitoring compliance, there are some aspects of good practice. These include
     independent checks, audits and surveys of staff and customers. It is of concern,
     however, that 34% of agencies reported only one method of assessment and that
     many agencies rely mainly on monitoring of individual transgressions of the code
     of conduct to assess compliance. Implicit in this is an assumption that a lack of
     formal complaints or grievances about ethical issues is evidence of full
     compliance. This minimalist approach is unreliable. It is also disappointing that few
     agencies commented on the way in which the results of their monitoring activities
     were used to improve or remedy systemic issues.


                                                                                                   Page 31
Ethical Conduct


    Commissioner’s Oversight
    The OPSSC climate survey provides an indication of integrity in ethical decision-
    making and conduct within agencies. Questions relate to the three key principles in
    the Code of Ethics.

    Justice (Impartiality)

    The extent of impartiality and using power fairly can be assessed through questions
    on the use of favouritism in decision-making.




                                       Justice – Being Impartial and Using Power Fairly
                                             (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)

    Contracts in your agency
    result from favouritism


     Favourable or preferential
     treatment is given to relatives


     Staff in your agency receive
     incentives or gifts intended to
     influence work related
     decisions
                                       0           20%             40%             60%                 80%   100%

                                           Never                           Rarely
                                           Sometimes                       Often
                                           Always                          Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank




     Very few respondents indicated that they believed contracts in the agency often or
     always resulted from favouritism (5%). A similar proportion (6%) perceived that
     favourable or preferential treatment is often or always given to relatives of staff.
     Very few respondents (1%) considered that staff in the agency often or always
     receive incentives or gifts intended to influence work related decisions. These
     responses indicate that employees believe there is a high level of compliance in
     these areas.




    Page 32
                                                               Ethics Integration and Monitoring


Justice (Equity)

The extent to which people are not abused or discriminated against can be
assessed using questions relating to men and women and people of different
cultural backgrounds being equally welcomed and respected.




          Justice - Not Abusing, Discriminating Against or Exploiting People
                               (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)


Men and women are equally
welcomed in this workplace



Ethnic and cultural diversity is
welcomed in this workplace


My fellow workers treat all their
colleagues with equal respect,
regardless of their gender

My fellow workers treat all their
colleagues with equal respect,
regardless of their ethnic or
cultural background

Managers treat all people in your
workplace with equal respect
regardless of their gender

Managers treat all people in your
workplace with equal respect
regardless of their ethnic or cultural
background
                                           0%           20%            40%           60%      80%       100%

                                         Agree strongly                         Agree somewhat
                                         Neither agree nor disagree             Disagree somewhat
                                         Disagree strongly                      Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank




  The majority of respondents indicated their belief that their workplaces welcomed
  gender and cultural diversity and that colleagues and managers treated all
  workers with equal respect. However, 16% of respondents disagreed that
  managers treat people with equal respect, regardless of gender, and 10%
  disagreed that managers treated people with equal respect, regardless of cultural
  background. This indicates there is some work to be done to help ensure the
  absence of discrimination in the workplace.




                                                                                                 Page 33
Ethical Conduct


     Respect for Persons

     The Respect for Persons principle can be assessed using questions relating to how
     employees and customers are treated and the degree to which people who are
     different are respected.




                                                 Respect for People
                                     (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)


  Your agency respects
  people who are different


  You are treated with respect by
  fellow employees


  Staff accept personal
  responsibility for their actions


  Customers are given
  reasons for decisions


  You are treated with
  respect by managers


                                         0              20%             40%            60       80%        100%

                                              Always                           Often
                                              Sometimes                        Rarely
                                              Never                            Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank




       Responses were very positive in relation to respect for those who are ‘different’;
       respect by fellow employees; staff accepting responsibility for their own actions;
       giving customers reasons for decisions and respectful treatment by managers.




     Page 34
                                                                Ethics Integration and Monitoring



 Responsible Care

 The Responsible Care principle can be assessed using questions related to serving
 the public interest.




                                       Responsible Care
                          (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)

Within the context of government
policy, the actions of your agency
serve the public interest


Your agency takes a responsible
attitude about caring for public
resources

                                     0%            20%             40%              60%     80%        100%

                                     Agree strongly                          Agree somewhat
                                     Neither agree nor disagree              Disagree somewhat
                                     Disagree strongly                       Don't Know/Doesn't apply/Blank




  It is encouraging that there is strong support (about 75%) for the statements that
  the actions of the agency serve the public interest, that management supports and
  encourages ethical behaviour and that the agency takes a responsible attitude
  towards caring for public resources.




                                                                                                  Page 35
Ethical Conduct


    Contacts with the OPSSC

    Public employees, Members of Parliament and the public make contact with the
    OPSSC to raise issues and concerns. During 2002/2003 there were 293 issues
    relating to the ethical codes raised in this way (with some people raising more than
    one issue). Of these contacts, 163 related to particular elements of the Code of
    Ethics and 57 to the codes of conduct in agencies. The proportion of contacts for
    each element of the Code of Ethics and the main issues raised are shown below.



            Percentage of Contacts Relating to each Element of the Code of Ethics
                                   (Total number of Code of Ethics contacts = 163)




                   Justice                                                           54%


     Respect for Persons                           20%


       Responsible Care                                   26%

                             0%     10%       20%        30%        40%       50%    60%




         Element                                      Main Issues Raised

     Justice                 •    Act without fear or favour and be open and accountable
                             •    Act impartially and in the public interest
                             •    Act openly and promptly to help resolve complaints
                             •    Declare any interest that may conflict with the performance of
                                  public duty
                             •    Protect people's right to due process.


     Respect for             •    Inform others about decisions and actions that affect them
     Persons                 •    Treat others with courtesy, consideration and sensitivity.


     Responsible             •    Seek the efficient and effective use of public assets and avoid
                                  waste
     Care                    •    Be open and accountable for decisions and actions, and
                                  consult those affected where possible
                             •    Be conscientious and scrupulous in the performance of public
                                  duty.




     Compared to contacts about human resource management, there were relatively
     few contacts with the OPSSC about the ethical codes. Those that are made relate
     mainly to the justice principle. The key areas are impartiality issues, such as
     conflict of interest and protecting people’s right to due process, including the need
     to act openly and promptly to resolve complaints. While the low number of
     contacts may indicate a high level of compliance, this should be seen in the
     context of the low level of awareness about the Code of Ethics and about how to
     raise concerns relating to ethical issues.



    Page 36
                                               Taking Action on Ethics Non-Compliance


Taking Action on Ethics Non-Compliance
   This section highlights the actions taken to deter non-compliance with the ethical
   principles and codes – the third element in the compliance framework.



                Deter
                              Action on Non-Compliance
                Non-          Deal effectively with issues of non-compliance
              Compliance      with the ethical principles and codes




   Agency Self-reporting
   Information was sought from agencies about breaches of the ethical codes
   investigated either in the agency, or by an external body. The following chart
   indicates the numbers of substantiated matters.




   Number of agencies receiving
   complaints relating to non-compliance                  11

   Number of complaints
   investigated internally
                                                                                 39

   Number of complaints investigated
                                               1
   by an external agency

                                           0         10         20         30   40        50
                                                                     Number




    The information provided by agencies indicates that relatively few matters are
    raised that are directly linked to non-compliance with the ethical codes, but these
    figures should be treated with caution. Many matters raised in a range of
    jurisdictions have elements that relate to ethical practices even though they may
    not be raised specifically as a breach of the codes. These may include matters
    referred to the Corruption and Crime Commission, Ombudsman, the Equal
    Opportunity Commission or Worksafe. Information from contacts with the OPSSC
    indicates that it is mainly disciplinary matters relating to employee breaches of the
    ethical codes that tend to be reported by agencies.




                                                                                     Page 37
Ethical Conduct


     Reporting Non-Compliance

     The climate survey asks several questions about employee willingness to take
     action to report wrongdoing. As described under the section on setting and
     communicating standards, there is little awareness about the courses of action
     available to report unethical behaviour, with only 35% of respondents indicating
     they knew what action to take. The questions in the following chart relate to how
     employees feel about reporting ethical wrongdoing.




                       Percentage of Respondents Answering Yes
                         (Based on 27, 421 respondents over the last five years)


   Does your agency actively encourage ethical
   behaviour by all of its employees?                                                          79%

   Are people who report unethical behaviour
   or disclose wrongdoing in your workplace                                        47%
   protected from victimisation & harassment?

  Have you ever reported an occurrence
                                                          12%
  of unethical behaviour?

  Have you ever been aware of an occurrence
  of unethical behaviour which you did not report?              21%

                                                     0%      20%         40%             60%   80%




      It is encouraging that 79% of respondents considered their agency actively
      encouraged ethical behaviour by all its employees. The results of other questions
      raise serious concerns about the credibility of processes for raising matters
      relating to non-compliance with the ethical codes. Only 47% of respondents
      believed people who reported wrongdoing were protected from victimisation or
      harassment, and 21% indicated that they were aware of an occurrence of
      unethical behaviour that they did not report. Clearly, much more work is needed,
      especially by agency management, to build trust and instill confidence in the
      process for raising ethical issues.




     Page 38
                                                                              Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Compliance by Portfolio and Agency
   Indicators of the extent of compliance and non-compliance for each agency, grouped by their
   ministerial portfolio, are shown in the following tables. They include information on whether the agency
   has a code of conduct and whether there have been any substantiated breaches of the HRM
   standards or ethical codes.

   Information on codes of conduct is obtained from the yearly reports by agencies. Information on
   breaches of the HRM standards and ethical codes is obtained from matters handled by the OPSSC.




Premier; Minister for Public Sector Management; Federal Affairs;
Science; Citizenship and Multicultural Interests
                                                                          Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                            developed       of HRM standards*

   Anti-Corruption Commission
   Department of the Premier and Cabinet
   Office of the Public Sector Standards Commissioner
   Parliamentary Commissioner for Administrative Investigations
   (Ombudsman)
   Royal Commission into Whether There Has Been Any
   Corrupt Or Criminal Conduct By Western Australian Police
   Officers
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




Deputy Premier; Treasurer; Minister for Energy
                                                                          Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                            developed       of HRM standards*


   Department of Treasury and Finance
   Office of Energy
   Office of the Auditor General
   WA Independent Gas Pipelines Access Regulator
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




                                                                                                           Page 39
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; the Mid-West,
Wheatbelt and Great Southern
                                                                           Code of Conduct       Absence of breach
                                                                             developed           of HRM standards*


    Department of Agriculture
    Department of Fisheries
    Forest Products Commission
    Great Southern Development Commission
    Mid West Development Commission
    Perth Market Authority
    Potato Marketing Corporation of Western Australia (Western
    Potatoes)
    Western Australian Egg Marketing Board
    Wheatbelt Development Commission                                              No
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




Minister for Local Government and Regional Development; Heritage;
the Kimberley, Pilbara and Gascoyne; Goldfields-Esperance
                                                                           Code of Conduct        Absence of breach of
                                                                             developed              HRM standards*


    Architects Board of WA
    Department of Local Government & Regional Development
    Fremantle Cemetery Board                                                 Covered under Metropolitan Cemeteries Board

    Gascoyne Development Commission
    Goldfields Esperance Development Commission
    Heritage Council of WA
    Kimberley Development Commission
    Metropolitan Cemeteries Board
    National Trust of Australia (WA)
    Pilbara Development Commission
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




    Page 40
                                                                              Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Attorney General; Minister for Health; Electoral Affairs
                                                                           Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                             developed       of HRM standards*


    Animal Resources Authority
    Commissioner for Equal Opportunity
    Department of Health
    Department of Justice                                                                       1 breach of RSA
                                                                                             standard* (see below)

    Law Reform Commission
    Legal Aid Commission of Western Australia
    Nurses Board of Western Australia
    Office of Health Review
    Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions
    Pharmaceutical Council of WA
    Western Australian Alcohol and Drug Authority (Drug and
    Alcohol Office)
    Western Australian Centre for Pathology and Medical                                         1 breach of RSA
    Research (Pathcentre)                                                                    standard* (see below)

    Western Australian Electoral Commission
    Western Australian Health Promotion Foundation (Healthway)
    Western Australian Legal Practice Board
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner
    ** RSA standard = Recruitment, Selection and Appointment standard

    Department of Justice
    As part of a selection process for a Project Officer, applicants were required to complete a range of
    selection tasks. The tasks were directly related to the requirements of the position and the subject
    matter being tested was directly related to the work already being performed within the Department.
    The internal applicant was permitted to complete pre-interview work in their office and had
    unsupervised access to Department information during the process. As the external applicants were
    not afforded the same treatment, the process was deemed not to be competitive because it provided
    the internal candidate an unfair advantage. In addition applicants were not advised of the weightings
    used by the panel for some criteria. The relief provided was to recommence the selection process at
    the interview stage.

    Pathcentre
    A selection panel did not adequately document its decision to appoint candidates to a pool. As such
    the decision was not capable of review. It was, therefore, not possible to consider that the panel made
    a proper assessment of the candidates’ skills, knowledge and experience.

    The relief provided was that the panel was reconvened to reconsider the claimant’s application, review
    its decision after obtaining referee reports and provide documentation to support its decision.




                                                                                                              Page 41
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency



Minister for Consumer and Employment Protection; Indigenous
Affairs; Minister Assisting the Minister for Public Sector Management
                                                                           Code of Conduct   Absence of breach of
                                                                             developed         HRM standards*


    Building & Construction Industry Training Fund
    Builders & Painters Registration Boards of WA
    Department of Consumer & Employment Protection
    Department of Indigenous Affairs
    Department of the Registrar Western Australian Industrial
    Relations Commission
    Hairdressers Registration Board                                              No
    Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation Commission
    (WorkCover Western Australia)
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner



Minister for the Environment
                                                                           Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                             developed       of HRM standards*


    Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority
    Bunbury Water Board
    Busselton Water Board
    Conservation Commission of Western Australia
    Department of Conservation & Land Management
    Department of Environment
    Office of Water Regulation
    Zoological Parks Authority
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




    Page 42
                                                                               Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Minister for Police and Emergency Services; Justice;
Community Safety
                                                                           Code of Conduct    Absence of breach
                                                                             developed        of HRM standards*


    Fire and Emergency Services Authority of WA
    Office of the Inspector of Custodial Services
    Police Service
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner



Minister for Planning and Infrastructure
                                                                     Code of Conduct          Absence of breach
                                                                       developed              of HRM standards*


    Commissioner of Main Roads
    Department for Planning and Infrastructure                    Currently combining codes
                                                                  of amalgamated agencies

    East Perth Redevelopment Authority
    Eastern Goldfields Transport Board                                         No

    Midland Redevelopment Authority
    Public Transport Authority                                                                   5 breaches of RSA
                                                                                              standard* relating to one
                                                                                              pool (see details below)

    Western Australian Independent Rail Access Regulator                       No

    Western Australian Land Authority (LandCorp)
    * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner
    ** RSA standard = Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Standard


    Public Transport Authority (formerly Westrail)
    A number of people lodged a breach of standards claim following a pool selection process. The
    process included administration of a series of tests related to health and fitness and academic tests of
    literacy and numeracy.

    The physical tests were a modified version of tests from other industries. Applicants were required to
    pass one of the three physical tests, but were allowed to fail either of the other two. This indicated that
    the skills from either of these latter tests were not essential job-related requirements. In addition, to
    demonstrate that a certain level of health and fitness is a job-related requirement, any fitness test must
    be administered to existing staff on an ongoing basis. Some of the aptitude tests were relevant to the
    work-related requirements of the position, while others were generic.

    Accordingly, a breach of the standard occurred because a proper assessment was not conducted. The
    tests and associated pass requirements did not adequately measure the specific knowledge, skills and
    abilities required. As a result, five breach of standard claims were upheld for claimants that were
    adversely affected by the tests.

    The relief provided was to reinstate the claimants as preferred applicants in the pool, based on other
    means of assessment against the criteria.




                                                                                                                   Page 43
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Minister for Education and Training
                                                                     Code of Conduct    Absence of breach
                                                                       developed        of HRM standards*

   Central TAFE
   Central West College of TAFE
   Challenger TAFE
   Country High School Hostels Authority
   Curriculum Council
   CY O'Connor College of TAFE
   Department of Education and Training                                                     1 breach of RSA
                                                                                          standard*. Failure to
                                                                                        implement agreed action
                                                                                       resulting from a breach of
                                                                                       Grievance standard. (See
                                                                                              details below)

   Department of Education Services
   Great Southern TAFE
   Kimberley College of TAFE
   Pilbara TAFE
   South West Regional College of TAFE
   Swan TAFE
   West Coast College of TAFE
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner
   ** RSA standard = Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Standard



   Department of Education and Training – Breach of RSA Standard
   When selecting cleaners, written applications were relied on to make selection decisions. It was
   considered that the reliance on written applications did not constitute a proper assessment of the
   capabilities of applicants to perform in the position, particularly as written skills were not a key
   requirement of the position. In addition to written applications, another selection tool should have been
   used to test applicants’ capabilities and to corroborate the claims made by applicants in their written
   applications. The relief provided was to assess the claimant using other more relevant methods.
   Department of Education and Training – Failure to Implement Agreed Action
   In the 2000/01 Annual Compliance Report there was a case reported where a claimant had raised a
   grievance with the Department. She was directed to communicate with her principal about the
   grievance, but the principal was directed not to communicate with the claimant. It was determined that
   this was a breach of the Grievance Resolution standard. In response to the finding, the Department
   agreed to resume the grievance process with alternative staff.

   Subsequent information and follow-up revealed that the Department did not implement the agreed
   action. The Department acknowledged that it did not address the matter appropriately, but considered
   that the passage of time since the original grievance meant it was impractical to do so. An offer by the
   Department to reimburse administrative costs incurred by the complainant while the grievance was
   pursued is yet to be accepted or rejected.




   Page 44
                                                                              Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Minister for Community Development, Women’s Interests, Seniors and
Youth; Disability Services; Culture and the Arts
                                                                          Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                            developed       of HRM standards*


   Department for Community Development
   Department of Culture and the Arts
   Disability Services Commission
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




Minister for Tourism; Small Business; Sport and Recreation; Peel and
the South West
                                                                          Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                            developed       of HRM standards*


   Department of Sport and Recreation
   Peel Development Commission
   Rottnest Island Authority
   Small Business Development Corporation
   South West Development Commission
   Western Australian Sports Centre Trust (Challenge Stadium)
   Western Australian Tourism Commission
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




Minister for State Development
                                                                          Code of Conduct    Absence of breach
                                                                            developed        of HRM standards*


   Department of Industry and Resources
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner




                                                                                                           Page 45
Compliance by Portfolio and Agency


Minister for Housing and Works; Racing and Gaming; Government
Enterprises; Land Information
                                                                          Code of Conduct   Absence of breach
                                                                            developed       of HRM standards*


   Burswood Park Board
   Department of Housing and Works
   Department of Land Information
   Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor
   Government Employees Superannuation Board
   Insurance Commission of Western Australia                                                   2 breaches of the
                                                                                             Grievance Resolution
                                                                                            standard relating to one
                                                                                             process. (See details
                                                                                                    below)

   Lotteries Commission of WA
   State Supply Commission
   Totalisator Agency Board
   * Based on matters referred to and substantiated by the Commissioner


   Insurance Commission of Western Australia
   An aggrieved party lodged a grievance, which made a number of allegations against two employees
   with the Insurance Commission. The agency conducted an investigation into the grievance and sought
   to reprimand the employees as a result of the allegations made. When the grievance process was
   reviewed, it was determined that:
       •     The affected parties were not informed of their rights and responsibilities and were not
             provided adequate time to respond to allegations against them
       •     The relevant facts and circumstances surrounding the allegations were not investigated
       •     The investigation process used information about the parties, which was outside of the
             grievance process, including discipline information
       •     The investigation process was not documented adequately.

   The relief provided was to acknowledge the breach, make an apology and to appoint an external
   investigator to conduct a fresh investigation. In addition, the Grievance Resolution Policy was
   amended and the original internal investigator was briefed on how the process could be improved.




   Page 46
APPENDICES




             Page 47
Appendix 1 – Enabling Legislation


Appendix 1 – Enabling Legislation
   Enabling Legislation
   The enabling legislation for this report is the Public Sector Management Act 1994. (PSM Act). The
   Office was established under the PSM Act; the functions and powers of the Commissioner are outlined
   in Sections 21-25, 45, 48 and 97.



   General Principles of Human Resource Management
   Section 8 of the PSM Act covers the powers of the Commissioner relating to the general principles of
   human resource management that are relevant to this report. The relevant parts are:

   8 (1) (a)   all selection processes are to be directed towards, and based on, a proper assessment of
               merit and equity;
   8 (1) (b)   no power with regard to human resource management is to be exercised on the basis of
               nepotism or patronage;
   8 (1) (c)   employees are to be treated fairly and consistently and are not to be subjected to arbitrary
               or capricious administrative acts.



   General Principles of Official Conduct
   Section 9 of the PSM Act covers the powers of the Commissioner relating to the general principles of
   official conduct that are relevant to this report. The relevant parts are as follows.

   The principles of conduct that are to be observed by all public sector bodies and employees are that
   they:
   (a)    are to comply with the provisions of
          (i) this Act and any other Act governing their conduct;
          (ii) public sector standards and codes of ethics; and
          (iii) any code of conduct applicable to the public sector body or employee concerned;
   (b)    are to act with integrity in the performance of official duties and are to be scrupulous in the use
          of official information, equipment and facilities; and
   (c)    are to exercise proper courtesy, consideration and sensitivity in their dealings with members of
          the public and employees
   .




   Page 48
                                                Appendix 2 – HRM Standards and Ethical Codes


Appendix 2 – HRM Standards and Ethical Codes
   Public Sector Standards in Human Resource Management
   Nine public sector standards have been developed and communicated to agencies by the OPSSC to
   achieve the following outcomes. The details of the minimum standards required to achieve these
   outcomes are available on www.wa.gov.au/opssc/.
       •   Recruitment Selection and Appointment Standard
           The most suitable and available people are selected and appointed.
       •   Transfer Standard
           Transfer decisions are equitable and take into account the participating organisation’s work
           related requirements and employee interests.
       •   Secondment Standard
           Secondment decisions are equitable and take into account the participating organisation’s
           work related requirements and employee interests.
       •   Performance Management Standard
           The performance of employees is fairly assessed to achieve the work related requirements of
           the public sector body while paying proper regard to employee interests.
       •   Redeployment Standard
           Redeployment decisions are equitable and take into account the participating organisation’s
           work related requirements and employee interests.
       •   Termination Standard
           Termination decisions are fair and entitlements are provided.
       •   Discipline Standard
           The discipline process observes procedural fairness.
       •   Temporary Deployment (Acting) Standard
           Temporary deployment (Acting) decisions are equitable and take into account the participating
           organisation’s work related requirements and employee interests.
       •   Grievance Resolution Standard
           The process used by an employing authority to resolve or redress grievances is fair.

   Ethical Codes
   The public sector Code of Ethics was first established in 1996 and a revised version came into effect
   from February 2002. Public sector bodies can develop their own agency-based code(s) of conduct to
   give further practical information about how to give effect to the principles outlined in the Code of
   Ethics. Public sector bodies must comply with codes.

   The three key principles of the Code of Ethics are:
       •   Justice – being impartial and using power fairly for the common good. It means not abusing,
           discriminating against or exploiting people.
       •   Respect for Persons – being honest and treating people courteously, so that they maintain
           their dignity and their rights are upheld. It means not harassing, intimidating or abusing
           people.
       •   Responsible Care – protecting and managing with care the human, natural and financial
           resources of the State. It means decisions and actions do not harm the short and long term
           well being of people and resources.




                                                                                                   Page 49
Appendix 3 – Methods of Monitoring Compliance


Appendix 3 – Methods of Monitoring Compliance
    The following strategies are used by the Commissioner to provide an independent evaluation of the
    extent of compliance or non-compliance.

    Thematic and agency reviews and specific investigations relating to key issues are important sources
    of information for monitoring compliance. There are limits, however, to the resources available for
    conducting reviews and investigations. The OPSSC selects issues and agencies for review based on
    analysis of information from a range of sources and after exercising judgement about those matters
    most critical to the achievement of improved compliance with the HRM principles and standards and
    the ethical principles and codes.

    Outcome Based Measures
    Sector-wide measures of human resource management and ethical outcomes are derived from
    aggregated information obtained through agency yearly reports and other sources. For example,
    demographic profiles of diversity groups are used to provide measures of equity outcomes.

    Regular Agency Reviews
    Reviews of large public sector agencies are conducted on a regular basis with each agency reviewed
    over a cycle of approximately four years. These reviews use climate surveys to obtain information on
    employee perceptions about human resource management, ethics and equity; information obtained
    through routine yearly reports from agencies; specific information related to the agency obtained
    through breach claims; and other matters raised with the OPSSC.

    The climate survey has been designed and is conducted by the OPSSC. It asks employees a range of
    questions on their perceptions of their agency’s human resource management, ethics and equity
    climate. Aggregated information is available from 27,421 public sector employees who responded to
    climate surveys conducted over the five years to September 2003. Agencies surveyed include most of
    the large agencies across the sector. All employees in an agency are sent a survey form. The
    response rates for each survey are usually around 35-40%.

    Feedback on the results of the Climate Survey, together with analysis of the agency’s demographic
    data, any agency-specific human resource management and ethics issues and the agency’s EEO
    management plan are provided to the senior executive of each agency. The purpose of these reviews
    is to:
       •      Assist agencies to achieve better practice in ethics, human resource management and equity
       •      Enable the Commissioner to maintain a database to monitor the extent of compliance across
              the sector as a whole and assess improvements over time.

    Criteria for Selecting Agencies for Regular Reviews
    The initial consideration used for selecting agencies for climate surveys and presentations is their
    scheduled time for review every four years. Timing for reviews may be brought forward or delayed
    based on the following factors.
       •      Matters of strategic significance across the sector, or as a result of State or national emerging
              themes
       •      Breaches of standard claims and matters referred to the OPSSC by public employees,
              members of the public or Members of Parliament
       •      Other external findings about an agency, such as outcomes of a Royal Commission, Tribunal
              cases (eg the Equal Opportunity Tribunal), reports by other independent oversight agencies
              and reports to Parliament
       •      Requirements to survey and review an appropriate spread of agencies for regular thematic
              reviews relating to the HRM standards or ethical codes
       •      Measures of representation and distribution of diversity groups at all levels of employment




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                                              Appendix 3 – Methods of Monitoring Compliance


    •   Previous climate survey responses and follow-up as a result of previous agency or thematic
        reviews
    •   Agency requests for an earlier survey and review.

Agencies selected for review are contacted to negotiate the specific dates based on agency activities
and other related reviews being conducted by the OPSSC.


Specific Agency Reviews
Specific reviews and investigations may be conducted in an agency in response to complaints and
allegations of non-compliance, concerns or issues raised, or to identify better practice. These involve
an in-depth examination of a particular issue or issues associated with the HRM principles and
standards, or the ethical principles and codes. A range of tools may be used depending on the issue
and the circumstances. These include policy reviews, audits of transactions, focus groups and
surveys.

Criteria for Selecting Agencies for Thematic Reviews
Decisions to conduct a specific review are based on issues or concerns that have become apparent
through information obtained by the OPSSC from a range of sources. They may be the result of a
single serious matter related to possible non-compliance or may result from repeated contacts on
similar issues. They may also arise as a result of information about better practice initiatives being
undertaken in the agency that may be relevant to the rest of the sector. The terms of reference and the
tools used to review the agency are determined on a case-by-case basis.


Thematic Reviews
The OPSSC conducts thematic reviews relating to specific HRM principles and standards and ethical
principles and codes. These thematic reviews provide an in-depth examination of an issue across a
range of public sector agencies.

Criteria for Selecting Agencies for Specific Reviews
The subjects of thematic reviews are selected based on the following:
    •   An analysis of information derived from the OPSSC consultation database
    •   Consideration of information, complaints and allegations of non-compliance received about a
        particular standard or ethical code
    •   Comments received by the Commissioner from various chief executive officers about a
        particular standard or ethical code
    •   The importance of the subject matter in human resource practices, or ethical conduct in the
        public sector and its influence on the effectiveness and efficiency of public sector agencies
    •   The importance of the subject matter to individual employees in public sector agencies.


Breach of Standard Claims
The Public Sector Management (Examination and Review Procedures) Regulations 2001 provide an
avenue for employees and other people to lodge claims when they believe a breach of standards has
occurred and to obtain relief where the standard has been breached. The OPSSC manages the
procedures for handling breach of standard claims. Analysis of these claims provides insight into key
issues relating to the HRM standards.




                                                                                                  Page 51
Appendix 3 – Methods of Monitoring Compliance



    Complaints and Allegations of Non-Compliance
    Public employees, Members of Parliament and members of the public contact the OPSSC with issues
    and concerns on a regular basis. These matters are recorded and analysed to determine recurring
    themes or issues of particular importance.

    The Office does not have a complaint resolution role in relation to specific allegations of
    contraventions of the ethical principles and ethical codes. The Office has a wider role – to monitor
    compliance and report to Ministers and Parliament on compliance or non-compliance by public sector
    agencies and employees with public sector principles, HRM standards, and ethical codes. However,
    where the Commissioner thinks it appropriate as part of the overall compliance monitoring function,
    the OPSSC will undertake an agency or thematic review and will use information provided through
    complaints and allegations of non-compliance.




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                                                                 Appendix 4 – Glossary of Terms


Appendix 4 – Glossary of Terms
   Breach of standard           A determination by the Commissioner that one or more of the
                                requirements of a Public Sector standard has/have not been
                                complied with

   CEO                          Chief Executive Officer

   Climate survey               A questionnaire measuring employee perceptions of equity and
                                diversity within an agency

   Compliance monitoring        Monitoring the extent of compliance with the HRM standards and
                                ethical codes at either an agency or sector level

   Code of conduct              A formal written policy documenting the behaviour expected of all
                                employees of a public sector body. Each public sector body is
                                expected, under the Public Sector Management Act, to develop a
                                code of conduct consistent with the Public Sector Code of Ethics

   Code of Ethics               The Western Australian Public Sector Code of Ethics which
                                outlines the minimum standards of conduct and integrity for public
                                sector bodies and employees

   DEOPE                        Director of Equal Opportunity in Public Employment

   EEO                          Equal Employment Opportunity

   Ethical Codes                The Western Australian Public Sector Code of Ethics together with
                                the individual codes of conduct of public sector bodies

   Indigenous Australians       Persons of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin

   Management Tiers             The top three tiers in the management structure of an organisation
                                Management tiers are linked to decision-making rather than salary

   OPSSC                        Office of the Public Sector Standards Commissioner

   People from culturally       People born in countries other than those categorised by the
   diverse backgrounds          Australian Bureau of Statistics as Main English Speaking (MES)
                                countries

   People with Disabilities     People with an ongoing disability that requires adaptation in the
                                workplace

   PSM Act                      Public Sector Management Act 1994

   Public Interest Disclosure   A disclosure made under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2003

   Public Sector Standards      See Standards

   SES                          Senior Executive Service




                                                                                              Page 53
Appendix 4 – Glossary of Terms


   HRM Standards            The Public Sector Standards in Human Resource Management.
                            There are nine standards:
                            •    Recruitment, Selection and Appointment
                            •    Transfer
                            •    Secondment
                            •    Performance Management
                            •    Redeployment
                            •    Termination
                            •    Discipline
                            •    Temporary Deployment (Acting)
                            •    Grievance Resolution

   Thematic Review          A review of an agency focusing on a particular subject or theme

   Youth                    People aged less than 25 years




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                                                                                                 Appendix 4 – Glossary of Terms



Appendix 5 – Agency List and Index
   Animal Resources Authority.................................. 41            Kimberley College of TAFE...................................44
   Anti-Corruption Commission ........................... 26, 39              Kimberley Development Commission ...................40
   Architects Board of WA......................................... 40         Law Reform Commission ......................................41
   Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority ................... 42                 Legal Aid Commission of Western Australia .........41
   Builders & Painters Registration Boards of WA .... 42                      Lotteries Commission of WA.................................46
   Building & Construction Industry Training Fund.... 42                      Metropolitan Cemeteries Board ............................40
   Bunbury Water Board ........................................... 42         Mid West Development Commission ....................40
   Burswood Park Board ........................................... 46         Midland Redevelopment Authority ........................43
   Busselton Water Board ......................................... 42         Nurses Board of Western Australia.......................41
   Central TAFE ........................................................ 44   Office of Energy ....................................................39
   Central West College of TAFE .............................. 44             Office of Health Review.........................................41
   Challenger TAFE .................................................. 44      Office of the Auditor General.................................39
   Commissioner for Equal Opportunity .................... 41                 Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.........41
   Commissioner of Main Roads ............................... 43              Office of the Inspector of Custodial Services ........43
   Conservation Commission of Western Australia... 42                         Office of the Public Sector Standards
   Country High School Hostels Authority ................. 44                 Commissioner .......................................................39
   Curriculum Council................................................ 44      Office of Water Regulation ....................................42
   CY O'Connor College of TAFE ............................. 44               Parliamentary Commissioner for Administrative
   Department for Community Development............. 45                            Investigations .................................................39
   Department for Planning and Infrastructure .......... 43                   Peel Development Commission ............................45
   Department of Agriculture ..................................... 40         Perth Market Authority ..........................................40
   Department of Culture and the Arts ...................... 45               Pharmaceutical Council of WA..............................41
   Department of Education and Training ........... 26, 44                    Pilbara Development Commission ........................40
   Department of Education Services........................ 44                Pilbara TAFE.........................................................44
   Department of Environment .................................. 42            Police Service .......................................................43
   Department of Fisheries........................................ 40         Public Transport Authority.....................................43
   Department of Health............................................ 41        Rottnest Island Authority.......................................45
   Department of Housing and Works ....................... 46                 Royal Commission into Whether There Has
   Department of Indigenous Affairs.......................... 42              Been Any Corrupt Or Criminal Conduct By
   Department of Industry and Resources ................ 45                   Western Australian Police Officers........................39
   Department of Justice ........................................... 41       Small Business Development Corporation............45
   Department of Land Information ........................... 46              South West Development Commission.................45
   Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor........... 46                      South West Regional College of TAFE .................44
   Department of Sport and Recreation .................... 45                 State Supply Commission .....................................46
   Department of the Premier and Cabinet ......... 25, 39                     Swan TAFE...........................................................44
   Department of the Registrar Western                                        The National Trust of Australia (WA) ....................40
   Australian Industrial Relations Commission.......... 42                    The Western Australian Egg Marketing Board ......40
   Department of Treasury and Finance ................... 39                  Totalisator Agency Board......................................46
   Dept of Conservation & Land Management .......... 42                       WA Independent Gas Pipelines Access Regulator39
   Dept of Consumer & Employment Protection ....... 42                        West Coast College of TAFE ................................44
   Dept of Local Govt & Regional Development........ 40                       Western Australian Alcohol and Drug Authority ....41
   Disability Services Commission ............................ 45             Western Australian Centre for Pathology and
   East Perth Redevelopment Authority .................... 43                 Medical Research (Pathcentre).............................41
   Eastern Goldfields Transport Board...................... 43                Western Australian Electoral Commission ............41
   Fire and Emergency Services Authority of WA ..... 43                       Western Australian Health Promotion Foundation
   Forest Products Commission................................ 40                   (Healthway) ....................................................41
   Fremantle Cemetery Board................................... 40             Western Australian Land Authority (LandCorp).....43
   Gascoyne Development Commission ................... 40                     Western Australian Legal Practice Board..............41
   Goldfields Esperance Development Commission . 40                           Western Australian Sports Centre Trust (Challenge
   Government Employees Superannuation Board... 46                                 Stadium).........................................................45
   Great Southern Development Commission........... 40                        Western Australian Tourism Commission .............45
   Great Southern TAFE ........................................... 44         Wheatbelt Development Commission ...................40
   Hairdressers Registration Board ........................... 42             Workers’ Compensation and Rehabilitation
   Heritage Council of WA......................................... 40         Commission (WorkCover Western Australia)........42
   Insurance Commission of Western Australia ........ 46                      Zoological Parks Authority ....................................42




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