skip to navigation skip to content skip to footer

Chapter 7 - Strategic Workforce Management


Workforce summary

Defence budgets for its Australian Defence Force (ADF) workforce on a ‘funded strength’ basis and the Australian Public Service (APS) workforce on a full-time equivalent (FTE) basis. Defence uses actual FTE as the most accurate indicator of current staffing levels. By contrast, workforce planning is based on average funded strength (for the ADF workforce) and average FTE (for the APS workforce) for the financial year. These averages, while suitable for planning and budgeting purposes, are lag indicators against the actual end-of-year figures.

Defence also records some statistical data by headcount, in which all personnel are counted equally regardless of the number of hours worked, and the figures include all personnel recorded as on duty or on leave, full-time or part-time, with or without pay. This statistical basis is used for gender information, employment categories and location. Defence does not base its workforce planning on headcount figures.

Workforce planning

This section provides information on average workforce strength during 2015–16. Like other Commonwealth entities, Defence uses average workforce strength figures for planning and budgeting purposes.

ADF Permanent Forces

Table 7.1 details ADF Permanent Force average funded strength for 2015–16. ADF strength was 58,061 in 2015–16, an increase of 549 from 2014–15. This includes ADF Reservists on continuous full-time service. Average funded strength for Reservists on continuous full-time service was 926 (comprising Navy 375, Army 440 and Air Force 111)—an increase of 38 from 2014–15.

The ADF workforce growth will continue towards the 2016 Defence White Paper allocation of 62,400.

Table 7.1: ADF Permanent Force average funded strength, 2014–15 and 2015–161, 2

2014–15 actual

2015–16 budget estimate3

2015–16 revised estimate4

2015–16 actual

Variation

%

Navy

14,070

14,238

14,249

14,232

–17

–0.1

Army

29,366

29,528

29,648

29,635

–13

0.0

Air Force

14,076

14,216

14,172

14,194

+22

+0.2

Total average funded strength

57,512

57,982

58,069

58,061

–8

0.0

Notes:
1. Figures in this table are average strengths; they are not a headcount.
2. Reservists undertaking full-time service are included in the figures. Employees on forms of leave without pay are not included.
3. As published in the Portfolio Budget Statements 2015–16.
4. As published in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements 2015–16.

ADF enlistments and separations

The permanent ADF headcount increased by 631 in 2015–16; this reflects the net difference between enlistments and separations.

The ADF enlisted 5,438 permanent members, made up of 4,458 men and 980 women, for the 12 months to 30 June 2016. This was 139 fewer enlistments than in 2014–15.

ADF enlistments can be categorised as ab initio (those with no prior military service) or prior service enlistments. Of the 5,438 ADF permanent members enlisted, 750 entrants had prior military service in either the Reserve, the Gap Year program, another Service or another country, or had previous Permanent Force service. There were 4,688 ab initio entrants.

Tables 7.2 and 7.3 provide comparative information about ADF Permanent Force separations over the last two years.

Table 7.2: ADF Permanent Force, 12-month rolling separation rates, 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

 

12-month rolling separation rate (%)

 

30 June 2015

30 June 2016

Navy

7.9

7.7

Army

11.3

10.0

Air Force

5.7

5.3

Total ADF Permanent Forces

9.1

8.3

Table 7.3: ADF Permanent Force separations, 2014–15 and 2015–16

Voluntary separations1

Involuntary separations2

Age retirement

Trainee separations

Total

2014–15

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

Officers

110

33

4

68

215

Other ranks

512

196

2

174

884

Army

Officers

211

77

26

154

468

Other ranks

1,427

747

10

650

2,834

Air Force

Officers

157

44

15

36

252

Other ranks

347

97

27

84

555

Total ADF Permanent Force

Officers

478

154

45

258

935

Other ranks

2,286

1,040

39

908

4,273

Total

2,764

1,194

84

1,166

5,208

2015–16

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

Officers

117

32

7

51

207

Other ranks

477

182

2

211

872

Army

Officers

251

67

26

117

461

Other ranks

1,304

661

14

525

2,504

Air Force

Officers

140

54

16

41

251

Other ranks

324

106

21

61

512

Total ADF Permanent Force

Officers

508

153

49

209

919

Other ranks

2,105

949

37

797

3,888

Total

2,613

1,102

86

1,006

4,807

Notes:
1. ‘Voluntary’ includes voluntary redundancies and resignations.
2. ‘Involuntary’ primarily comprises members who are medically unfit, unsuitable for further duty, who died while serving or who fell into the ‘management-initiated early retirement’ category.
Note:
Figures in this table show Permanent Force headcount numbers (substantive headcount). Reserves undertaking continuous full-time service are not included. Classifications are not mutually exclusive, and an individual is placed in only one group. The order of classifications is as follows: cadets and trainees; age retirement; and the remainder are classified as voluntary or involuntary. Members commencing leave or leave without pay are not included.

ADF Reserve

The number of days each ADF Reserve member works in a year can vary substantially, depending on personal circumstances and organisational need. To reflect this, Table 7.4 shows both the total number of days served by Reserve members in 2015–16, and the number of Reservists who rendered paid service.

2015–16 saw an increase of 39,017 days’ service over 2014–15 to a total of 989,518 (101,729 Navy, 684,673 Army and 203,116 Air Force), while the number of Reservists undertaking service decreased marginally to 19,338 (1,803 Navy, 14,402 Army and 3,133 Air Force).

As Table 7.4 shows, the number of days served by both Navy and Air Force Reserve members was substantially higher than forecast (by 27 per cent and 10 per cent respectively), while the variation for the Army was minimal. In the Navy’s case, it has increased the contribution of Reserve members through innovations in managing the Reserve salary budget to mitigate the underspends of previous years, and a 100 per cent audit of the Navy Reserve, which reinvigorated interest among inactive Reserve members. Meanwhile, the Air Force has experienced an increase in days served due to greater use of the Reserve workforce to complement capability, and increased attendance rates by Reserve members, from an average of 60 days in 2014–15 to 64 in 2015–16.

Table 7.4: ADF Reserve paid strength, 2014–15 and 2015–16 1, 2

2014–15 actual:
days served (members paid)

2015–16 budget estimate:3
days served (members paid)

2015–16 revised estimate:4
days served (members paid)

2015–16 actual:
days served (members paid)

Variation:
days served (members paid)

Percentage variation
days served (members paid)

Navy

94,052
(2,073)

80,000
(1,760)

80,000
(1,760)

101,729
(1,803)

+21,729
(+43)

+27%
(+2%)

Army

677,361
(14,301)

595,000
(14,000)

650,000
(14,500)

684,673
(14,402)

+34,673
(–98)

+5%
(–1%)

Air Force

179,088
(2,988)

176,000
(3,100)

185,000
(3,100)

203,116
(3,133)

+18,116
(+33)

+10%
(+1%)

Total paid Reserves

950,501
(19,362)

851,000
(18,860)

915,000
(19,360)

989,518
(19,338)

+74,518
(–22)

+8%
(–0.1%)

Notes:
1. Because the number of days or hours worked by Reserve members can vary greatly, figures in this table show the total number of days’ service rendered, with a headcount of members rendering paid service in brackets.
2. This table includes the High Readiness Reserve, the Active Reserve and the Specialist Reserve. Reservists on full-time service in the Permanent Forces are not included in this table; they are included in Table 7.1.
3. As published in the Portfolio Budget Statements 2015–16.
4. As published in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements 2015–16.

Project Suakin

The ability to attract and retain the right people, in the right numbers, with greater workforce flexibility and agility is fundamental to the sustainment of the ADF’s future capability. A new total workforce model called Project Suakin, which is designed to enable the generation and sustainment of ADF capability through workplace flexibility, was completed in 2015–16. This included necessary amendments to Defence legislation and revised policies and procedures.

Project Suakin will be implemented by the Services in 2016–17 through cultural and business process reforms. These reforms will enable members of the Permanent Forces and Reserve to move across service categories, including full-time, part-time, Reserve and dual-employment options with industry partners.

The total workforce model supports the attraction and retention of members through enabling them to meet their changing personal circumstances during their working life, and enhances Defence’s reputation as an employer of choice.

Australian Public Service workforce

Table 7.5 shows details of the APS average strength, expressed as average FTE, for 2014–15 and 2015–16. APS average strength was 18,071 in 2015–16. This was a decrease of 1,271 from the 2014–15 figure of 19,342. As Table 7.6 shows, the decrease in the end-of-year FTE workforce in 2015–16 was 1,364 FTE staff to a total of 17,423—the lowest level since 2001–02.

The reduction occurred through continuing reforms to Defence’s business practices, and has laid the foundation for a reshaping of the workforce to meet the 2016 Defence White Paper initiatives and to deliver the recommendations of the First Principles Review.

Table 7.5: Civilian workforce (APS and contractor), average full-time equivalent, 2014–15 and 2015–161

2014-15 actual

2015-16 budget estimate2

2015-16 revised estimate3

2015-16 actual

Variation

%

APS

19,342

18,380

18,100

18,071

–29

–0.2

Contractors

361

484

379

421

+42

+11.1

Total civilian workforce

19,703

18,864

18,479

18,492

+13

+0.1

Notes:
1. These figures are average FTE; they are not a headcount.
2. As published in the Portfolio Budget Statements 2015–16.
3. As published in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements 2015–16.

Table 7.6: APS workforce, end-of-year full-time equivalent, 2014–15 and 2015–161

 

2014–15 actual

2015–16 budget estimate2

2015–16 revised estimate3

2015–16 actual

Variation

%

Total APS

18,787

17,900

17,500

17,423

–77

–0.4

Notes:
1. Figures in this table are actual FTE for the last payday of 2015–16. Employees on forms of leave without pay are not included. The figures differ from Table 7.5 as that table shows the average FTE across the full year.
2. As published in the Portfolio Budget Statements 2015–16.
3. As published in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements 2015–16.

APS recruitment and separations

Defence recruited 870 APS employees during 2015–16, including 229 as part of the graduate program.

The APS headcount decreased by 1,389; this reflects the net difference between recruitment and separations. The separations are shown in Table 7.7; the majority of separations were due to resignation or retirement from Defence.

Table 7.7: APS separations, 2014–15 and 2015–16

 

Voluntary
redundancy1

Involuntary
separations2

Resignation/
retirement3

Transfers4

Total

2014–155

 

 

 

 

 

Senior Executive Service

10

8

18

Executive Levels 1 and 2

93

18

304

42

457

Other levels

148

51

832

172

1,203

Total APS

241

69

1,146

222

1,678

2015–16

 

 

 

 

 

Senior Executive Service

28

6

4

38

Executive Levels 1 and 2

573

22

278

120

993

Other levels

74

63

853

238

1,228

Total APS

675

85

1,137

362

2,259

Notes:
1. Voluntary redundancies are those that are program initiated.
2. Involuntary figures include breach of conduct, invalidity retirement, involuntary redundancies, lack of qualifications, non-performance, term probation and death.
3. Resignation and retirement figures include resignation, retirement (minimum age and Senior Executive Service) and completion of non-ongoing.
4. Transfers are those who have transferred to other government departments.
5. Some 2014–15 figures have been adjusted from what was reported in the Defence Annual Report 2014–15 to account for retrospective transactions.
Note:
Figures in this table show ongoing and non-ongoing headcount numbers (substantive headcount).

Actual staffing

This section provides detailed workforce information as at 30 June 2016 and outlines changes in the workforce that occurred during 2015–16. It includes numbers of people (Table 7.8), locations (Table 7.9), employment categories (tables 7.10, 7.11 and 7.12) and gender information (tables 7.13 and 7.14, and Figure 7.1); the information is based on headcounts.

At 30 June 2016, Defence had a permanent workforce of 76,503 (headcount), comprising 58,035 permanent ADF members and 18,468 ongoing APS employees (Table 7.8). An additional 110 APS employees were employed on a non-ongoing basis.

Table 7.8: Defence workforce headcount, 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

 

Navy

Army

Air Force

ADF1

APS2

Headcount 30 June 2015

13,949

29,193

14,262

57,404

19,967

Additions

1,153

3,444

841

5,438

870

Separations

1,079

2,965

763

4,807

2,259

Headcount 30 June 2016

14,023

29,672

14,340

58,035

18,578

Change

74

479

78

631

–1,389

Notes:
1. ADF figures are permanent members and do not include Reserve members or those undertaking continuous full-time service.
2. APS figures include paid and unpaid employees, which covers full-time, part-time, ongoing and non-ongoing employees.
Note:
Figures in this table show headcount numbers (substantive headcount).
Note:
During 2015–16, the permanent ADF headcount increased by 631 to 58,035. The growth in the permanent workforce is expected to continue in coming years as the ADF grows towards the 2016 Defence White Paper allocation. The Reserve headcount decreased by 1,628 to 21,458 (including those members on continuous full-time service and Active Reservists). The total ADF workforce was 79,493, and included 17,170 Navy permanent and Reserve members, 43,218 Army permanent and Reserve members and 19,105 Air Force permanent and Reserve members. At 30 June 2016, 1,046 Reservists were also Defence APS employees.

Table 7.9: Defence workforce by employment location, 30 June 2016

 

NSW

VIC1

QLD

SA

WA

TAS

NT

ACT2

O/S3

Total

Permanent Forces4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

6,741

1,590

797

174

2,320

14

573

1,654

160

14,023

Army

5,428

3,209

12,394

1,476

864

70

3,248

2,711

272

29,672

Air Force

4,635

974

3,101

2,013

320

7

963

2,008

319

14,340

Subtotal

16,804

5,773

16,292

3,663

3,504

91

4,784

6,373

751

58,035

Reserves5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

824

337

413

131

355

88

76

916

7

3,147

Army

3,454

2,444

3,214

1,159

1,494

433

427

918

3

13,546

Air Force

1,143

390

1,334

450

282

48

120

997

1

4,765

Subtotal

5,421

3,171

4,961

1,740

2,131

569

623

2,831

11

21,458

Total ADF

22,225

8,944

21,253

5,403

5,635

660

5,407

9,204

762

79,493

APS6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total APS

2,884

3,726

1,340

2,094

493

77

267

7,643

54

18,578

Notes:
1. Victorian figures include individuals located in Albury (NSW).
2. ACT figures include individuals located in Jervis Bay (Commonwealth), Queanbeyan (NSW) and Bungendore (NSW).
3. Individuals posted overseas for reasons including long-term duty, training, exchange and liaison.
4. Includes paid and unpaid members.
5. Includes Reserve members on continuous full-time service.
6. Includes paid and unpaid employees, which covers full-time, part-time, ongoing and non-ongoing employees. The 30 June 2016 figures for the APS include 1,046 APS employees who are also counted as Reserve members.
Note:
Figures in this table show headcount numbers (substantive headcount).

Table 7.10: Star-ranked officers as at 30 June 2016

Total star rank

2015–16 promotions

2015–16 separations

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Four-star

Navy

Army

Air Force

1

1

Three-star

Navy

3

3

Army

1

1

1

1

Air Force

1

1

15

1

1

1

Two-star

Navy

11

11

3

3

5

1

6

Army

15

1

16

2

2

1

1

Air Force

9

2

11

2

2

4

3

3

One-star3

Navy

35

4

39

9

1

10

5

1

6

Army

49

9

584

11

2

13

9

1

10

Air Force

35

3

38

9

3

121

6

62

Total

160

19

179

37

8

45

31

3

34

Notes:
1. One temporary Air Commodore not included in the total.
2. One temporary Air Commodore not included in separations.
3. One-star figures include three chaplains.
4. Includes two Brigadiers on continuous full-time service, deployed.
5. Air Marshal Leo Davies AO CSC was appointed Chief of the Air Force on 4 July 2015.

Table 7.11: APS Senior Executive Service employees as at 30 June 2016

Total SES1

2015–16 engagements2, 3

2015–16 separations2, 4

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Senior Executive

Secretary

1

1

Band 3

8

1

9

1

1

4

1

5

Band 25

20

9

29

2

1

3

6

1

7

Band 16

46

21

67

2

2

16

6

22

Chief of Division

Grade 2

7

2

9

3

1

4

Grade 1

Senior Executive

Relief staff7

30

14

44

Total

112

47

159

3

3

6

29

9

38

Notes:
1. Figures in this table show actual employee numbers at their substantive level, but not staff on long-term unpaid leave.
2. Gains and losses do not reflect movement of officers between levels in each of the Senior Executive Service and Chief of Division streams.
3. Engagement figures include new engagements and transfers from other agencies only.
4. Separation figures include resignations, retirements, redundancies, and promotions and transfers to other departments.
5. Senior Executive Service Band 2 includes Medical Officer Grade 6.
6. Senior Executive Service Band 1 includes Medical Officer Grade 5.
7. Relief staff indicates non-SES employees on long-term acting arrangements in SES/Chief of Division positions that are vacant, or where the incumbents are taking leave, acting in higher positions or undertaking other duties.

Table 7.12: APS Executive Level employees and below by classification, as at 30 June 2016

Headcount 30 June 2016

2015-16 engagements

2015-16 separations

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Men

Women

Total

Executive Level

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Executive Level 2

1,188

345

1,533

26

9

35

233

74

307

Executive Level 1

2,311

1,107

3,418

24

16

40

463

223

686

Subtotal

3,499

1,452

4,951

50

25

75

696

297

993

Other Staff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

APS Level 6

3,276

1,913

5,189

61

61

122

226

158

384

APS Level 5

1,908

1,322

3,230

37

41

78

182

109

291

APS Level 4

920

1,082

2,002

19

31

50

86

112

198

APS Level 3

576

1,101

1,677

21

33

54

54

83

137

APS Level 2

534

642

1,176

194

139

333

73

60

133

APS Level 1

136

99

235

91

61

152

48

37

85

Subtotal

7,350

6,159

13,509

423

366

789

669

559

1,228

Total APS

10,849

7,611

18,460

473

391

864

1,365

856

2,221

Note:
Figures in this table show ongoing and non-ongoing employee numbers (substantive headcount). Figures include paid, unpaid, full-time and part-time employees.

Table 7.13: APS employees by gender, 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

30 June 20151

30 June 2016

Full-time

Part-time2

Total

Full-time

Part-time2

Total

Ongoing employees

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

11,570

223

11,793

10,627

223

10,850

Women

6,931

1,161

8,092

6,513

1,105

7,618

Total ongoing

18,501

1,384

19,885

17,140

1,328

18,468

Non-ongoing employees

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

41

18

59

70

13

83

Women

20

3

23

26

1

27

Total non-ongoing

61

21

82

96

14

110

Total APS employees

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

11,611

241

11,852

10,697

236

10,933

Women

6,951

1,164

8,115

6,539

1,106

7,645

Total

18,562

1,405

19,967

17,236

1,342

18,578

Notes:
1. Some 30 June 2015 figures have been adjusted from what was reported in the Defence Annual Report 2014–15 to account for retrospective transactions.
2. Part-time employees are those with weekly hours less than the standard hours. It does not relate to employees in part-time positions.
Note:
Figures in this table show headcount numbers (substantive headcount). Figures include paid and unpaid employees.

Figure 7.1: Defence workforce by gender at 30 June 2016

Figure 7.1: Defence workforce by gender at 30 June 2016

Table 7.14: ADF permanent and Reserve forces and APS by gender, 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

30 June 20151

30 June 2016

Men

%

Women

%

Men

%

Women

%

Navy permanent2

Trained force

Officers

2,068

14.8

502

3.6

2,039

14.5

485

3.5

Other ranks

7,168

51.4

1,625

11.6

7,369

52.5

1,718

12.3

Training force

Officers

570

4.1

144

1.0

607

4.3

161

1.1

Other ranks

1,516

10.9

356

2.6

1,336

9.5

308

2.2

Total Navy

11,322

81.2

2,627

18.8

11,351

80.9

2,672

19.1

Army permanent2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trained force

Officers

4,497

15.4

818

2.8

4,479

15.1

828

2.8

Other ranks

17,952

61.5

2,166

7.4

18,421

62.1

2,250

7.6

Training force

Officers

818

2.8

207

0.7

762

2.6

205

0.7

Other ranks

2,405

8.2

330

1.1

2,418

8.1

309

1.0

Total Army

25,672

87.9

3,521

12.1

26,080

87.9

3,592

12.1

Air Force permanent2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trained force

Officers

3,371

23.6

876

6.1

3,397

23.7

905

6.3

Other ranks

7,234

50.7

1,463

10.3

7,144

49.8

1,476

10.3

Training force

Officers

533

3.7

186

1.3

533

3.7

188

1.3

Other ranks

469

3.3

130

0.9

512

3.6

185

1.3

Total Air Force

11,607

81.4

2,655

18.6

11,586

80.8

2,754

19.2

ADF permanent2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trained force

Officers

9,936

17.3

2,196

3.8

9,915

17.1

2,218

3.8

Other ranks

32,354

56.4

5,254

9.2

32,934

56.7

5,444

9.4

Training force

Officers

1,921

3.3

537

0.9

1,902

3.3

554

1.0

Other ranks

4,390

7.6

816

1.4

4,266

7.4

802

1.4

Total ADF permanent

48,601

84.7

8,803

15.3

49,017

84.5

9,018

15.5

Gap Year

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

36

9.1

33

8.4

Army

139

63.5

26

11.9

158

40.0

53

13.4

Air Force

42

19.2

12

5.5

58

14.7

57

14.4

Total Gap Year

181

82.6

38

17.4

252

63.8

143

36.2

Reserves3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Navy

3,866

16.7

996

4.3

2,456

11.4

691

3.2

Army

11,759

50.9

1,831

7.9

11,636

54.2

1,910

8.9

Air Force

3,694

16.0

940

4.1

3,807

17.7

958

4.5

Total Reserves

19,319

83.7

3,767

16.3

17,899

83.4

3,559

16.6

APS4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total APS

11,852

59.4

8,115

40.6

10,933

58.8

7,645

41.2

Notes:
1. Some 30 June 2015 figures have been adjusted from what was reported in the Defence Annual Report 2014–15 to account for retrospective transactions.
2. Permanent force headcounts do not include Gap Year participants, who are reported separately in this table.
3. Reserves include all active members (training, deployed and other part-time military work commitments) and those on continuous full-time service.
4. APS figures include paid, unpaid, full-time, part-time, ongoing and non-ongoing employees. The 30 June 2016 figures for APS include 1,046 APS employees who are also counted as Reserve members.
Note:
Figures in this table show headcount numbers (substantive headcount). Percentage figures are calculated within each section, so that the subtotal for each section adds to 100 per cent. Percentages may not sum due to rounding.

The ADF Gap Year program was reintroduced in 2015 with an intake of 260 participants, comprising 200 Army and 60 Air Force entrants. The program was expanded to include the Navy in 2016 and a total of 445 participants were enlisted, comprising 78 Navy, 250 Army and 117 Air Force participants. Of those who enlisted in the program in 2016, 395 were still participating at 30 June 2016 (Table 7.15).

Table 7.15: ADF Gap Year program participants, 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

Navy

Army

Air Force

ADF

Total

 

Men

Women

Men

Women

Men

Women

Men

Women

 

2015 Gap Year program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Participants

170

30

44

16

214

46

260

Status at 30 June 2015

Separated or inactive Reserves

67

13

3

4

70

17

87

Permanent ADF

81

14

17

3

98

17

115

Active Reserves

22

3

24

9

46

12

58

Gap Year

0

2016 Gap Year program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Participants

39

39

190

60

60

57

289

156

445

Status at 30 June 2016

Separated or inactive Reserves

3

6

30

7

2

35

13

48

Permanent ADF

1

1

1

Active Reserves

1

1

1

Gap Year

36

33

158

53

58

57

252

143

395

Note:
The Gap Year program was reintroduced for the Army and Air Force in 2015, and for the Navy in 2016.

Remunerating people

Workplace agreements

The Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement sets out most of the terms and conditions of employment, including remuneration, performance management and working arrangements for the Defence workforce, excluding the Senior Executive Service (SES). The legal framework that underpins the agreement includes the Fair Work Act 2009 and the Public Service Act 1999. The agreement is developed through consultation with employees and their representatives and is negotiated consistent with legislation and the Government’s bargaining policy.

During 2015–16, Defence continued to bargain with employees and their representatives for a new enterprise agreement. This process will continue in 2016–17.

Table 7.16 shows the number of SES and non-SES employees covered by an enterprise agreement, contract or determination as at 30 June 2016.

Table 7.16: Number of SES and non-SES employees covered by an enterprise agreement, contract or determination as at 30 June 2016

Employment arrangement

Non-SES

SES

Enterprise agreement (Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement 2012–2014)

18,412

Building Defence Capability Payments (individual flexibility arrangement)

169

Section 24(1) determination (under the Public Service Act 1999)

113

Common law contract

113

Defence remuneration is a key component of the Defence employment offer. It attracts people to join Defence, develop personally and professionally, and choose to remain in Defence. The employment offer provides for fair and competitive remuneration, consistent with the parameters laid down by the Government.

The diverse remuneration structures of the ADF and APS are explained further in this section.

ADF remuneration

The independent Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal, established under section 58H of the Defence Act 1903, is responsible for setting pay and pay-related allowances for ADF members.

The ADF Workplace Remuneration Arrangement 2014–17 is a key component of the ADF remuneration framework. The arrangement is part of the ADF remuneration initiative aimed at attracting and retaining military personnel and forms a significant part of the Defence offer to the ADF.

The Workplace Remuneration Arrangement increases pay and pay-related allowances. Other conditions of service are determined by the Minister for Defence under section 58B of the Defence Act 1903. The current arrangement expires on 1 November 2017. Table 7.17 details salary ranges for permanent ADF members as at 30 June 2016.

Table 7.17: ADF Permanent Force salary ranges as at 30 June 2016


Rank

Salary range ($)

Minimum

Maximum

Officer of the Permanent Forces

General (equivalent)1

570,290

814,700

Lieutenant General (equivalent)1

402,130

574,470

Major General (equivalent)2

226,446

276,151

Brigadier (equivalent)2, 3

158,459

252,530

Colonel (equivalent)2, 3, 5

142,034

241,086

Lieutenant Colonel (equivalent)2, 5

120,800

229,410

Major (equivalent)2, 5

84,621

206,659

Captain (equivalent)2, 5

66,277

196,152

Lieutenant (equivalent)4

55,095

115,488

2nd Lieutenant (equivalent)4

51,475

107,813

Other rank of the Permanent Forces

Warrant Officer Class 1 (equivalent)

75,051

115,511

Warrant Officer Class 2 (equivalent)

69,125

107,032

Staff Sergeant (equivalent)

66,807

103,255

Sergeant (equivalent)

59,732

98,748

Corporal (equivalent)

51,617

90,297

Lance Corporal (equivalent)

47,480

83,928

Private Proficient (equivalent)

46,499

82,947

Private (equivalent)

45,537

81,989

Notes:
1. General (equivalent) and some Lieutenant General (equivalent) rates are set by the Remuneration Tribunal.
2. Includes rates for medical officers.
3. Includes rates for chaplains.
4. Includes transitional rates for other rank appointed as officer.
5. Excludes medical procedural specialist.

ADF Super and ADF Cover

In July 2016, Defence implemented a new superannuation package for the military, called ADF Super. ADF Super is the default superannuation fund for all new permanent ADF members and members of the Reserves on continuous full-time service from 1 July 2016. The new superannuation arrangements provide more flexible and portable superannuation that recognises the unique nature of military service for Australia’s service men and women.

ADF Super has an employer contribution rate of 16.4 per cent. From 1 July 2016, ADF members will be able to transfer their accumulated ADF Super benefits to a fund of their choice at any time, including if they leave the ADF.

ADF Cover, the statutory death and invalidity scheme that will apply to ADF Super members, and those who choose another fund, does not require any personal contributions and is consistent with the cover provided by the Military Superannuation and Benefits Scheme.

APS remuneration

Table 7.18 reflects Defence APS salary rates as at 30 June 2016. While the majority of Defence employees receive salaries within the standard ranges, the Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement has built-in flexibility to vary remuneration and other benefits so that Defence can develop, attract and retain selected employees with the necessary skills and knowledge to deliver capability. These individual flexibility arrangements are referred to as Building Defence Capability Payments.

Table 7.18: APS salary ranges as at 30 June 2016

Classification

Minimum salary ($)

Maximum salary ($)

Individual flexibility arrangements1 ($)

SES pay arrangements

SES Band 3

235,711

280,839

515,000

SES Band 22

189,558

236,846

360,500

SES Band 13

156,215

199,981

276,395

Non-SES pay arrangements4

Minimum salary ($)

Maximum salary ($)

Special pay points ($)

Executive Level 2

111,559

133,905

179,2765

Executive Level 1

96,084

108,382

133,9056

APS Level 6

76,023

86,844

89,4637

APS Level 5

69,395

74,331

74,9048

APS Level 4

63,236

69,038

APS Level 3

55,825

61,512

APS Level 2

49,009

55,096

55,6639

APS Level 1

43,306

48,613

Notes:
1. Maximum salary paid under an individual remuneration arrangement shown.
2. Includes rates for Chief of Division Grade 2 and Medical Officer Class 6.
3. Includes rate for Chief of Division Grade 1 and Medical Officer Class 5.
4. Salary ranges provided under the Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement.
5. Maximum rate for Executive Level 2.1, Executive Level L2.2, legal and science specialist structures and Medical Officer Class 3 and 4.
6. Maximum rate for public affairs and legal specialist structures and Medical Officer Class 1 and 2.
7. Maximum rate for Public Affairs Grade 2 retained pay point.
8. Maximum rate for Senior Technical Officer Grade 1 retained pay point.
9. Maximum rate for Technical Assistant Grade 2 retained pay point.

Senior Leadership Group remuneration

ADF: All ADF senior officers (excluding statutory office holders) are remunerated under the ADF Workplace Remuneration Arrangement 2014–17. Other non-pay-related conditions of service are determined by the Minister for Defence under section 58B of the Defence Act 1903.

Statutory officers: Statutory office holders, including the Secretary and the Chief of the Defence Force, are remunerated under determinations decided by the independent Remuneration Tribunal, under the Remuneration Tribunal Act 1973.

APS: SES remuneration is set by a single determination made under section 24(1) of the Public Service Act 1999 and supplemented on an individual basis by common law agreements.

These arrangements also include access to leave, learning and development, performance management, travel and relocation assistance, remote localities allowances, and consultation and dispute resolution provisions.

Performance pay

Under the current Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement, non-SES employees are able to progress through their salary range subject to fully effective or better performance. Employees at the top of the range receive a 1 per cent lump sum bonus. This bonus is considered a form of performance pay.

An SES employee may be paid a performance bonus at the discretion of the Secretary, either as an incentive and reward for exceptional performance or as a retention incentive to remain in an identified role.

Performance-based pay is not a feature of any existing ADF remuneration framework. Career development opportunities, including promotion, are the key recognitions of performance.

Aggregated performance payments for Defence as a whole for 2015–16 were $14.4 million. Table 7.19 shows SES and non-SES employee performance payments in Defence in 2015–16.

Table 7.19: SES and non-SES employee performance payments, 2015–16

Classification

No. of employees

Aggregated performance pay amount ($)

Average performance pay amount ($)

APS Level 1

100

69,951.67

699.52

APS Level 2

800

565,736.85

705.41

APS Level 3

1,467

1,035,885.31

700.40

APS Level 4

1,734

1,189,766.26

678.32

APS Level 5

2,824

2,075,492.95

725.44

APS Level 6

4,488

3,464,012.88

762.49

Executive Level 1

3,599

3,818,310.56

1,050.72

Executive Level 2

1,474

2,041,021.24

1,358.87

SES Band 1

3

49,391.06

16,460.35

SES Band 2

3

82,315.10

27,438.37

SES Band 3

2

43,082.00

21,541.00

Note:
The annual performance cycle is from 1 September to 31 August.

Managing and developing staff

Defence continued to make progress in the development of its APS workforce to deliver capability needs.

In 2015–16, there was a strong focus on APS leadership development, with an increased number of staff attending Australian Public Service Commission programs. Internal programs were refreshed to reflect the One Defence leadership behaviours, including Capstone (a program aimed at SES Band 1 and military one-star officers), Catalyst (aimed at Executive Level 1 and 2 employees), and Gateway (aimed at employees at the APS 5 and 6 levels).

The Defence Leading for Reform program, which aims to equip executive-level employees with the skills to successfully lead and deliver across a range of reform activities associated with the First Principles Review, was delivered to six cohorts, with 40 executive-level employees in each cohort. All executive-level employees in the enabling functions will complete the program in the next two years.

A 360-degree feedback program was implemented across the Defence senior leadership, focused on individual development needs, particularly as they relate to the One Defence leadership behaviours.

The executive-level talent management program was run for the fifth consecutive year, and continues to be a key investment in the future capability of Defence leaders.

A skills census was completed to identify trends or shortages in particular skills, knowledge or qualifications across the Defence APS. Professionalisation programs exist for a number of Groups and job families across the Defence APS, with employees completing formal qualifications that will assist them to deliver on current and future job requirements.

A range of new training was developed to support Defence’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, and to enhance the skills of the Defence workforce.

Three APS employees are undertaking PhDs under the Sir Roland Wilson Foundation PhD scholarship scheme, based at the Australian National University (ANU). This APS-wide scheme is the result of a partnership between the Commonwealth Government and the Sir Roland Wilson Foundation. It is designed to nurture future senior leaders in the APS and provide them with learning and development opportunities at the ANU. Two Defence scholars started their PhDs in 2014 and will finish in early 2017; a third started early in 2016 and is expected to complete her studies in 2019. The scholarships cover a diverse field of military and defence studies; management of military training areas, psychological and mental health outcomes across the military lifecycle, and Australia’s extraterritorial human rights obligations.

Work health and safety

Health and safety remained a key Defence priority in 2015–16. Work health and safety (WHS) activities focused on improving health and safety outcomes through enhanced governance arrangements. This included strengthening accountabilities, improvements to event reporting, and alignment with First Principles Review reforms.

The Defence Work Health and Safety Committee continued its focus on strategic-level issues, including implementation of the 2012–2017 WHS strategy. The strategy aims to improve WHS management and performance, ensuring hazards and risks are managed. A new WHS strategy will be developed during 2016–17.

Specific initiatives included realigning functions to deliver targeted and simplified WHS information, and aligning services with corporate-level service delivery reforms resulting from the First Principles Review. The improved delivery of APS rehabilitation services is expected following integration into the corporate WHS function.

Defence is embedding WHS into the capability lifecycle through clearly defined accountabilities from concept to design, development, introduction into service, use and disposal of goods and other items.

Defence also continued to work collaboratively with Comcare. The annual Defence–Comcare liaison forum and Comcare representation on the Defence Work Health and Safety Committee is improving performance by closely working with the regulator to prevent WHS events from occurring, and ensure more effective management when they do occur.

Hazardous chemicals and enforceable undertaking

Defence remained focused on the effective management of hazardous chemicals since the lifting of the Comcare enforceable undertaking in 2013, and the subsequent application of the cooperative compliance program with Comcare.

This has included ensuring that systemic improvements to hazardous chemicals management and awareness are embedded in Defence processes and procedures. A key aspect of improvement involved hazardous chemicals training. In 2015–16, training completions exceeded 5,000 personnel.

A hazardous chemicals core skills framework was also designed to create a skills pathway for personnel involved in the handling and management of hazardous chemicals.

Defence is prepared for transition to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals system by 31 December 2016 as part of cross-government reforms. Key activities included the preparation of communication materials and working with manufacturers and suppliers of hazardous chemicals to align Defence with supplier and industry standards.

WHS policy development and achievements

Work began on revising the Defence WHS manual to simplify and streamline structure and content. The purpose is to deliver a manual that is easy to navigate and understand.

In 2015–16, six policies were implemented, covering:

  • WHS roles, responsibilities and accountabilities
  • management of safety risks
  • WHS due diligence
  • WHS in the capability lifecycle
  • base WHS management system accountabilities.

The policies are now available to all staff through the Defence WHS manual.

Policy development is being informed by improved reporting and analysis. A new user interface for WHS event reporting through Sentinel (the corporate WHS management information system) was delivered in February 2016 to enable more accurate data entry and analysis.

The safety trend analysis reporting solution (or ‘STARS’) was also delivered in 2015–16 to improve WHS analysis and reporting through the integration of multiple datasets, including hazard, audit, and APS Comcare compensation data.

Defence conducted 120 WHS audits during 2015–16. This comprised 75 safety management system and 45 compliance audits in the risk areas of hazardous chemicals and joint special licences for plant. The audit program aims to improve business performance, and provide information regarding the application of Defence policy and compliance with relevant WHS legislation.

Comcare interventions

During 2015–16, Comcare undertook 327 inspections across Defence based on known high-risk areas and issued three improvement notices. In addition to partnering with Comcare on inspections, Defence actively investigates safety incidents. In 2015–16, investigations focused on psychosocial factors, hazard exposures and safety systems. Defence uses these interventions to develop or refine associated hazard reduction programs and improve WHS performance. The identification in 2015–16 of the requirement for a psychosocial risk management strategy is illustrative of how this work informs WHS priorities.

Table 7.20 shows the number of notices that Comcare issued to Defence during 2015–16 and the preceding two years.

Table 7.20: Work health and safety—Comcare notices, 2012–13 to 2015–16

 Reports

2013–14

2014–15

2015–16

Improvement notices1

1

3

Prohibition notices2

Do-not-disturb notices3

Enforceable undertakings4

Notes:
1. Improvement notices are based on incidents and occurrences that contravene the WHS legislation.
2. Prohibition notices are issued to remove an immediate threat to the health or safety of workers.
3. Do-not-disturb notices are issued for a specific period of time to remove a threat to the health or safety of personnel.
4. Enforceable undertakings – Comcare may accept a written undertaking to fulfil an obligation under the WHS legislation.

The number of notifiable WHS incidents continued to decline in 2015–16, as shown in Table 7.21. Figure 7.2 shows the percentage of Defence personnel involved in WHS incidents, by severity, in 2015–16.

Table 7.21: Work health and safety incidents and number of people involved, 2012–13 to 2015–16

 

2012–13

2013–14

2014–15

2015–16

No. of incidents2

No. of people involved in an incident3

No. of incidents2

No. of people involved in an incident[3]

No. of incidents2

No. of people involved in an incident3

No. of incidents2

No. of people involved in an incident3

Fatality1

15

15

8

8

13

13

10

10

Serious injury or illness1

986

986

629

629

588

590

462

478

Dangerous incident1

1,484

1,000

740

551

302

631

292

438

Minor injury

11,952

11,952

11,968

11,958

11,139

11,179

9,998

10,098

Near miss

33

26

832

553

1,121

1,212

1,173

1,498

Exposure

6,144

6,143

4,333

4,452

1,248

1,926

1,096

2,766

Total

20,614

20,122

18,510

18,151

14,411

15,551

13,031

15,288

Notes:
1. Fatalities, serious illness and injuries, and dangerous incidents are notifiable to Comcare.
2. The ‘Number of incidents’ columns show the number of incidents occurring in the relevant financial year; however, a single event can include multiple individuals.
3. The ‘Number of people involved in an incident’ columns show the number of employees harmed or at risk in the event. One event may result in multiple injuries or none.
Note:
Incidents are recorded on the date of the event. A single event can include multiple individuals. A total of 246 events were excluded where the severity was unknown.

Figure 7.2: Percentage of Defence personnel involved in WHS incidents by severity, 2015–16

Figure 7.2: Percentage of Defence personnel involved in WHS incidents by severity, 2015–16
Note:
The pie chart shows incident severity for each person involved in a WHS incident as a percentage of total Defence personnel in 2015–16.

Workplace health and safety culture

Defence continues to maintain a positive safety culture, and will continue efforts to mainstream work health and safety as a critical element of business effectiveness across the organisation. The YourSay survey measures the attitudes of Defence staff to aspects of work health and safety. The 2015–16 results are consistent with those of previous years, as shown in Table 7.22.

Table 7.22: Attitudes to work health and safety, results of YourSay survey, 2013–14 to 2015–16

Attitude survey statement

ADF

APS

2013–14

Agree (%)

2014–15

Agree (%)

2015–16

Agree (%)

2013–14

Agree (%)

2014–15

Agree (%)

2015–16

Agree (%)

Health and safety is treated as an important issue in my workplace

91

92

90

87

86

85

I know how/where to obtain safety information relevant to my workplace

92

92

92

87

89

88

When I report an accident/injury/
incident/hazard, I believe that appropriate action will be taken

85

85

84

83

82

81

Cultural change

March 2016 marked the fourth year of Pathway to Change: Evolving Defence Culture implementation. As at 30 June 2016, 98 per cent of the 175 Pathway to Change key actions and recommendations from the six culture reviews have been finalised.

Defence has transitioned from implementation of recommendations to cultural programs and initiatives. Progress was made towards full-time implementation of flexible career models, enhanced career pathways, military justice reform and completing the final steps in the removal of gender restrictions from ADF combat role employment categories.

Defence has completed its second year of collaboration with the Australian Human Rights Commission. This included visits by the Commission to Defence establishments to examine particular aspects of culture and gauge the effectiveness of particular strategies, and to provide input into current and future organisational reform initiatives.

Pathway to Change evaluation, including internal surveys of employee attitudes and behaviours, indicates that positive change is occurring—for example:

  • Overall, awareness and adoption of Pathway to Change has improved since 2013.
  • Demonstrable change was achieved in Defence’s training establishments, with a reduction in incidents of unacceptable behaviour experienced by trainees and cadets.
  • Defence survey data indicates leadership is delivering on the ‘zero tolerance’ message, with Defence people better equipped to report unacceptable behaviour than they were in previous years.
  • Confidence in the prevention and effective management of unacceptable behaviour has improved in the last three years, although Defence needs to make more substantial progress.
  • Defence people continue to report that Defence’s commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive workforce is high.

Defence is using such information to inform the next stages of culture reform, from 2017 into the future. In May 2016, the Senior Leadership Group came together to discuss the progress of Pathway to Change, leadership accountability and the required behaviours to deliver the First Principles Review reforms, and the next steps to shape future cultural reform in Defence.

Complaint handling and resolution

Defence people have the right to complain if they are aggrieved by matters relating to their employment. ADF members (Permanent Forces and Reserve) may apply for redress of grievance under the provisions of Part XV of the Defence Force Regulations 1952. APS employees may seek a review of actions under the Public Service Act 1999.

APS review of actions

Section 33 of the Public Service Act 1999 establishes a review of actions scheme and allows non-Senior Executive Service APS employees to seek review where they have a complaint about an action or a decision relating to their employment. Defence received 75 applications for review of actions in 2015–16, which was consistent with the previous year (Figure 7.3).

The following subjects featured most regularly in the applications for review:

  • performance management, assessment and reporting
  • management of unacceptable behaviour complaints by line management
  • security clearance decisions
  • staff selection and the allocation of duties
  • access to leave or other employment conditions.

Figure 7.3: APS review of actions applications received and finalised, 2011–12 to 2015–16

Figure 7.3: APS review of actions applications received and finalised, 2011–12 to 2015–16

Unacceptable behaviour

Defence people can make a complaint about any incident of unacceptable behaviour they have experienced or witnessed in the workplace. Complaints of unacceptable behaviour are reported and recorded in a central database. Guidance and support is available to ensure that complaints are managed and resolved appropriately.

All Defence personnel are required to undertake annual workplace behaviour training, which includes information about expected behaviours and guidance on making and managing complaints.

In 2015–16, 693 complaints of unacceptable behaviour were recorded in the Defence complaints management, tracking and reporting system (known as ‘ComTrack’). This is a decrease on the previous year’s complaint numbers and reflects ongoing efforts across Defence to reduce the incidence of unacceptable behaviour.

Unacceptable behaviour complaints fall into the following six main categories:

  • abuse of power
  • discrimination
  • harassment
  • sexual harassment
  • workplace bullying
  • inappropriate workplace relationships and conflict of interest.

On average, between 80 and 90 per cent of unacceptable behaviour incidents are at a level where local management is the most appropriate course of action. However, between 10 and 20 per cent are of a seriousness that results in a formal disciplinary or administrative outcome. Defence encourages the use of alternative dispute resolution and the majority of complaints continue to be resolved informally. The number of complaints of alleged unacceptable behaviour represents complaints from less than 1 per cent of the Defence workforce.

Figure 7.4 shows the number of unacceptable behaviour complaints received and finalised in 2015–16 and the preceding four years.

Figure 7.4: Unacceptable behaviour complaints received and finalised, 2011–12 to 2015–16

Figure 7.4: Unacceptable behaviour complaints received and finalised, 2011–12 to 2015–16

Reporting on sexual misconduct

The Defence Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Response Office (SeMPRO) provides Defence personnel with victim support; case management services, including assistance through formal reporting, investigation and legal processes; and educational resources.

Victim services encompass a 24/7 telephone response service for Defence people seeking help with their experiences with sexual offences and sexual harassment. There is also assistance available for commanders, managers and colleagues for managing sexual misconduct incidents. In 2015–16, 258 clients were assisted with support and case management; incident management advice and information; debriefing and other mental health support; and information on SeMPRO services, civilian assaults, and other behaviour management systems in Defence. SeMPRO is also a primary data collection point for sexual misconduct incidents formally reported to Defence. The SeMPRO supplementary report contains detailed information on SeMPRO service provision and formally reported incidents in Defence in 2015–16.

A Sexual Ethics Education in Defence primary prevention program was developed to ensure all military personnel have the appropriate knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to make sound ethical decisions in their sexual relationships. Designed to be command led, the program reinforces a zero tolerance culture towards sexual misconduct and reflects a Defence workplace that is respectful of the sexual safety of all.

The role of bystanders in sexual assault primary prevention is an area of focus for 2016–17. Defence is developing products aimed at increasing awareness of the active bystander’s role and embedding attitudes that empower personnel to be active in primary prevention.

SeMPRO supplementary report 2015-16 [PDF, 321KB]

Diversity in Defence

Defence is creating a more diverse and inclusive culture, which will assist Defence to access the broadest available talent in Australia and harness the capability benefit and improved decision making that a diverse workforce generates, and to achieve its cultural reform efforts.

The Defence Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2012–2017 identifies the five strategic goals that underpin successful diversity and inclusion in Defence and identifies Defence’s diversity priorities:

  • women
  • Indigenous Australians
  • people with disability
  • people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  • lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people.

In 2015–16, Defence implemented programs and initiatives that harness the diverse knowledge, skills and attributes of its people. Through diversity, Defence gains the varied perspectives needed to deal with complex problems and develop innovative solutions.

Women

Defence has implemented a range of initiatives to increase the number of women in both the ADF and the APS since the 2011 Review into the Treatment of Women in the Australian Defence Force and the 2011 Review of Employment Pathways for APS Women in the Department of Defence. These initiatives are focused on attracting, recruiting and retaining women, removing the barriers to career progression, and facilitating career development through mentoring and leadership opportunities. To increase the representation of women on Australian Government boards, Defence has more widely utilised the government BoardLinks information. Women represent 34.5 per cent of Defence board appointments, with 35.1 per cent of new appointments being women.

All ADF employment categories are now open to women and new female recruits. This allows selection for all ADF positions based on a person’s ability to do the job and will increase employment and career opportunities for women in the ADF. Cultural reform activities that have enabled this initiative are continuing. Further information on women in the ADF can be found in the ‘Women in the ADF’ report.

The representation of women in the Defence APS has increased from 40.6 per cent at 30 June 2015 to 41.2 per cent at 30 June 2016, although continues to be well below that of the wider APS.

There has been improvement in the representation of women at SES levels, with an increase of 2.5 per cent so that women now represent 29.8 per cent of the Defence SES. This gain did not translate into improvement at Executive Levels 1 and 2 (remaining at 29.4 per cent) or for the APS 1 to 6 group (remaining at 45.7 per cent).

In 2015–16, further initiatives were implemented to address the structural and cultural barriers preventing women from achieving their full potential and full participation. These initiatives included:

  • a leadership inclusion program, cascaded down from the senior leadership to Executive Level 2 officers with large supervisory responsibilities. This served to raise understanding of the impact of bias and to build inclusive leadership practices
  • increased representation of women in Executive Level 1 and Executive Level 2 talent programs
  • a group mentoring program for women from APS 5 to Executive Level 1, in Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne
  • gender targets for the recruitment of APS graduates, with marketing for engineering, science and information technology streams more targeted at women
  • initiatives and partnerships with industry and academia that are aimed at attracting women studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics to work in Defence
  • cultural awareness activities in specific areas in Defence to raise understanding of the impact of unconscious bias
  • revised guidelines to support the diversity of selection panels for Defence APS recruitment.

‘Women in the ADF’ report

The ‘Women in the ADF’ report is published as an online supplement to the Defence annual report for the third time this year. The report addresses elements of recommendation 3 from the Australian Human Rights Commission Review into the treatment of women in the Australian Defence Force—Phase 2 report, including women’s participation, women’s experience and access to flexible work. It is also the mechanism for the Services to report against achievements for recommendation 6—promotional gateways; recommendation 9—recruitment targets; and recommendation 13—flexible work arrangements targets.

The report presents a range of workforce and attitudinal data and compares the current year’s data with that of the previous year to gain an indication of the progress Defence has achieved. It shows that, since the commencement of Pathway to Change: Evolving Defence Culture and the implementation of the Review into the treatment of women in the Australian Defence Force—Phase 2 report recommendations, Defence has put considerable effort into growing and advancing the female ADF workforce. As at 1 June 2016, the participation rate of women in the ADF reached 15.5 per cent, an increase from 15.3 per cent in June 2015. The report also highlights areas that require more comprehensive analysis, allowing Defence to prioritise further research on gender diversity.

Defence will continue to produce a ‘Women in the ADF’ report each year. This will enable an accurate measurement of progress on women’s employment and experience, identify areas of concern and highlight successful initiatives across the three Services.

Women in the ADF report 2015–16 [PDF, 980KB]

Indigenous participation and engagement

The Defence Reconciliation Action Plan 2015–2018 commits Defence to a range of activities under Reconciliation Australia’s themes of relationships, respect and opportunities.

Defence partnered with Indigenous organisations such as the Clontarf Foundation, the Australian Indigenous Education Foundation and the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience Indigenous Corporation to assist Indigenous youth to explore Defence careers.

Acknowledgement of Country plaques were installed at Defence establishments and, in honour of the traditional custodians, the Defence theatre in Canberra was renamed the Ngunnawal Theatre. In addition, Indigenous ADF members visited Turkey and commemorated Indigenous soldiers who fell at Gallipoli.

By 2018, Defence is aiming for an Indigenous workforce representation of 2.7 per cent. Indigenous APS employees increased from 1.2 per cent in July 2015 to 1.7 per cent in July 2016, while Indigenous ADF permanent members increased from 1.5 per cent in July 2015 to 1.8 per cent in July 2016 (Figure 7.5 and Table 7.23). The Indigenous in Defence marketing campaign, the Indigenous Development Program and Indigenous pre-recruitment courses helped to increase the number of Indigenous people in Defence.

Defence engaged 72 new Indigenous APS employees through traineeship and apprenticeship entry-level programs managed by the Australian Public Service Commission, the Department of Human Services and the Department of Employment.

Defence conducted one of the largest affirmative recruitment activities of any Australian Government department. As a result, 81 APS positions were filled by Indigenous Australians at various APS levels across Australia.

Figure 7.5: Growth of permanent Indigenous participation in the Defence workforce

Figure 7.5: Growth of permanent Indigenous participation

 

Table 7.23: Defence Indigenous personnel as at 30 June 2015 and 30 June 2016

30 June 2015

30 June 2016

ADF

Number

% of total

Number

% of total

Permanent

887

1.5

1,016

1.8

Active Reserve1

451

2.0

374

1.7

Navy

Permanent

227

2.0

307

2.2

Active Reserve1

33

0.7

20

0.6

Army

Permanent

451

1.5

547

1.8

Active Reserve1

377

2.8

307

2.3

Air Force

Permanent

159

1.1

162

1.1

Active Reserve1

41

0.9

47

1.0

APS

Ongoing

241

1.2

323

1.7

Non-ongoing

1

1.2

1

0.9

Note:
1. Active Reserve figures include continuous full-time service.
Note:
Data for this table is reliant on self-identification on the Defence human resource system; therefore, the data is likely to under-report actual participation rates.

People from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds

Defence’s initiatives for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds complement existing efforts to build a diverse and inclusive workforce under Pathway to Change: Evolving Defence Culture and the Defence Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2012–2017.

In 2015–16, Defence conducted work experience programs aimed at attracting students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to work in either the APS or ADF; developed a marketing campaign to promote ADF careers to people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds; and adjusted the collection of personal data to align with the government-wide definition of ‘culturally and linguistically diverse’.

People with disability

In 2015–16, Defence continued to implement programs to increase the number of people with disability in Defence and to reduce workplace barriers—for example:

  • Defence engaged 12 ongoing employees with intellectual disability using the special measures provisions under the Public Service Act 1999.
  • Defence is partnering with local community organisations to provide people with disability an opportunity to engage in meaningful work by providing administrative support at locations across Australia. The Defence Administrative Assistance Program began in 2014 in Brisbane and has now expanded to Canberra, Ipswich, Adelaide and Perth. In 2016–17, the program will commence in Townsville, Sydney, Melbourne and Darwin.
  • As of July 2016, the program employs 115 people with disability. The Dandelion@Defence program provides people with autism spectrum disorder with unique skills and attributes the opportunity to work in information and communications technology jobs in Defence.
  • The Dandelion@Defence program provides people with autism spectrum disorder with unique skills and attributes the opportunity to work in information and communications technology jobs in Defence.
  • Defence has implemented an improved, client-centric approach to support people with disability in accessing workplace adjustments and to eliminate workplace barriers.

The Defence Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2012–2017 provides the principles, goals and outcomes to guide all programs and policy relating to disability in Defence. This strategy is aligned with the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020 and focuses on programs and policy that improve the lives of people with disability, promote participation and create a more inclusive organisation.

The Defence Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2012–2017 is available at www.defence.gov.au/diversity.

Disability reporting mechanisms

Since 1994, non-corporate Commonwealth entities have reported on their performance as policy adviser, purchaser, employer, regulator and provider under the Commonwealth Disability Strategy. In 2007–08, reporting on the employer role was transferred to the Australian Public Service Commission’s State of the Service reports and the APS Statistical Bulletin. These reports are available at www.apsc.gov.au. From 2010–11, entities have no longer been required to report on these functions.

The Commonwealth Disability Strategy has been replaced by the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020, which sets out a 10-year national policy framework to improve the lives of people with disability, promote participation and create a more inclusive society. A high-level, two-yearly report will track progress against each of the six outcome areas of the strategy and present a picture of how people with disability are faring. The first of these progress reports was published in 2014, and can be found at www.dss.gov.au.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people

Defence continues to value and support the inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people and seeks to create an inclusive workplace by driving long-term, sustainable LGBTI awareness and support structures.

In 2015, Defence established an LGBTI employee network, Defence Pride. The aim of Defence Pride is to support all people within Defence to create and be a part of safe, respectful and inclusive teams. Defence Pride supports all members of Defence to foster a culture of inclusion and respect, empowering our people to bring their whole selves to work each day, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Defence continues to demonstrate a commitment to LGBTI inclusiveness by engaging with other government bodies and military organisations on best practice; supporting research in the LGBTI space; supporting ADF members and Defence APS employees to march in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade; and participating in the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI).

The AWEI is a benchmarking initiative that assesses organisations’ commitment to LGBTI workplace inclusion practices. Participation in this index provides Defence with comprehensive feedback on its LGBTI inclusiveness. At the 2016 AWEI awards, Defence was recognised for the second year in a row with Silver Tier status. Defence is one of the top 20 employers in Australia for a workplace inclusive of LGBTI people.