3.3 People management

Staff statistics

Detailed staff statistics are provided in Appendix 5 including ARC staff by: classification level; employment category (ongoing, non-ongoing); employment status (full-time, part-time status); and gender, as well as staff separations by classification level and employment category.

In summary, at 30 June 2016:

  • the ARC had 127 staff (including the CEO), compared to 115 at 30 June 2015
  • 91 per cent of staff were ongoing, compared to 97 per cent at 30 June 2015
  • 46 per cent of staff were at the Executive Level, compared to 49 per cent at 30 June 2015
  • 71 per cent of staff were female, compared to 68 per cent at 30 June 2015
  • no staff identified as being Indigenous, the same as at 30 June 2015
  • 94 per cent were employed under the enterprise agreement.

The staff statistics are provided to support the assessment of the ARC’s effectiveness in managing and developing staff during 2015–16. The ARC aims to manage its human resources efficiently and effectively to support the achievements of the purposes and objectives of the organisation.

Assessment of effectiveness in managing and developing staff

Workforce planning and staff retention and turnover

As a relatively small agency in terms of staff employed, workforce planning is critical. During 2015–16, the ARC reviewed its priorities for the year (as part of its operational planning processes) and the need for staff in particular areas to support those priorities (as part of its internal budget deliberations). The ARC maximised opportunities to develop a flexible and responsive workforce by:

  • enabling staff rotations both inside and outside the ARC to support staff development. Inside the ARC, staff were encouraged to help with the ERA and NCGP processes during peak periods of activities. Outside the ARC, a number of staff were seconded for short periods to help with major policy reviews being undertaken by other agencies
  • providing targeted training opportunities
  • providing opportunities for staff to work at higher levels during staff absences
  • ensuring relevant knowledge management and sharing processes were in place.

In 2015–16 staff turnover figures were higher than in previous years, with 19 separations recorded compared to 10 in 2014–15. Thirteen of these separations were for career opportunities, both inside and outside the Australian Public Service (APS).

Workplace diversity

Diversity planning forms an important part of workforce planning, promoting an inclusive workplace culture.

The ARC Workforce Diversity Programme 2015-19 provides an overarching framework for a number of diversity plans and policies including: the Multicultural Action Plan, the Discrimination and Harassment-free workplace policy, and the Reconciliation Action Plan. As part of the Programme the ARC committed to reporting progress in its annual report.

In 2015–16:

  • all ARC staff completed eLearning modules on Cultural Awareness and Disability Awareness
  • the ARC Diversity Working Group (DWG) met to discuss diversity ideas and progress against commitments in the Diversity Programme, Multicultural Action Plan and Reconciliation Action Plan. The Diversity Working Group brings together a diverse range of ARC employees including but not limited to: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as well as a Reconciliation Action Plan Champion and Agency Multicultural Plan Champion. It represents different styles, viewpoints and jobs to achieve a common goal: improving the work culture at the ARC
  • the ARC participated in NAIDOC week activities. A number of staff represented the agency in the NAIDOC Touch Football Carnival
  • the ARC worked on developing Protocols for respecting country and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The new protocol will help the ARC meet its commitments under the Reconciliation Action Plan, and to strengthen the ARC as a respectful and positive workplace
  • the ARC celebrated Harmony Day, a day celebrated around Australia on 21 March each year to help all Australians celebrate cultural diversity. At an all staff lunch event held on that day, staff brought share plates of food representing their culture, family background, or country they love to visit
  • the ARC continued to publicise the annual R U OK? Day Celebrations (September) a dedicated day to remind people to ask family, friends and colleagues the question, “R U OK?”, in a meaningful way
  • the ARC continued to promote use of the Employee Assistance Program, including to new employees.

Employment arrangements


During 2015–16 the ARC employed non-SES staff under the following arrangements:

  • the ARC Enterprise Agreement 2011–14: This agreement operated from 20 September 2011 and nominally expired on 30 June 2014. During 2015–16 the ARC continued to negotiate for a new enterprise agreement. In the meantime, the existing agreement continues to apply
  • Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs): AWAs were formalised individual agreements negotiated by the employer and employee. Changes to the Workplace Relations Act 1996 stipulated that no new AWA could be entered into on or after 13 February 2008. The ARC has a small number of staff on AWAs that were negotiated before those changes were enacted
  • Individual flexibility arrangements (IFA): Employees covered by the ARC Enterprise Agreement 2011–14 may agree to make an IFA to vary the effect of terms of the agreement. IFAs within the ARC generally deal with retention allowances or remuneration, allowing the CEO to remunerate specialised employees based on market forces and experience
  • Section 24(1) determinations: Under section 24(1) of the Public Service Act 1999, the CEO can make determinations to offer staff remuneration or conditions that supplement those available under an enterprise agreement or AWA in order to avoid disadvantage. Section 24(1) determinations used in the ARC are individual arrangements and in general provide for a specified retention allowance. The ARC Enterprise Agreement 2011–14 obviates the need for new determinations, although existing determinations will continue.

Details of SES employment arrangements (including remuneration) are provided on page 91.


The number of ARC staff covered by the different employment arrangements are outlined in Table 3.4 below. At 30 June 2015, 94 per cent of non-SES staff were covered by the ARC Enterprise Agreement.

Note that the figures in Table 3.4 exclude the CEO and will result in doublecounting if added because non-SES employees with a section 24(1) Determination or IFA are also covered by the ARC Enterprise Agreement. As a result, the total number of agreements is higher than the total number of staff by the number of section 24(1) Determinations and IFAs.

Table 3.4: Employment arrangements covering staff (at 30 June 2015 and 2016)

Employment arrangement




ARC Enterprise Agreement







Australian Workplace Agreements







s. 24(1) Determinations







Individual Flexibility Arrangements








The salary ranges for non-SES staff are provided in Table 3.5 below. The ranges reflect the full span of salaries available under the ARC Enterprise Agreement, AWAs, IFAs and Subsection 24(1) determinations.

Table 3.5: Salary ranges of non-SES staff by classification (at 30 June 2016)


Salary range

Executive Level 2


Executive Level 1














Performance pay

The ARC does not provide access to performance pay.

Non-salary benefits

The ARC offered a range of non-salary benefits in 2015–16 including:

  • flu vaccinations
  • a health allowance
  • superannuation advice
  • access to salary packaging arrangements.

Key training and development strategies, outcomes of training and development

ARC training and development activities are conducted within the framework of its Learning and Development Strategy 2014–17. The strategy aims to ensure that all employees have access to appropriate training opportunities to ensure the organisation has the right skills and knowledge to achieve its objectives. In the 2015 State of the Service Census, 83 per cent of ARC staff indicated that they believed the ARC provided access to effective learning and development opportunities compared to 62 per cent for the Australian Public Service.

In 2015–16, the People and Services Section coordinated access for ARC staff to a range of training opportunities including in-house training as well as external opportunities such as coaching, studies assistance and other training and development offerings.

In-house training

During the year all employees were required to undertake mandatory eLearning modules. The modules included: APS Values and Principles, Privacy Awareness, Commonwealth Resource Management, Fraud Awareness; Introduction to Risk in the Commonwealth; Bullying and Harassment Prevention; Disability Awareness; Working with Diversity, and Cultural Awareness. All new staff were required to undertake four eLearning modules: APS Values and Principles; Security; Privacy Awareness; and Fraud Awareness.

The ARC also provided in-house training to staff on:

  • Application and Interview Skills for APS and Executive Level staff
  • Influencing, Negotiating and Persuasion Skills
  • Coaching and Developing Others
  • Managing Upward and Outward
  • Working with Diversity (mandatory for all staff).


In 2015–16 the ARC spent $97,803 on learning and development activities, including $12,909 on studies assistance for nine ARC staff members. Details of expenditure are provided in Table 3.6 below.

Table 3.6: Training and development by classification, 2015–16



Days used






Executive Level 1-2












Work health and safety performance

The department’s workplace health and safety arrangements, provided in accordance with Schedule 2, Part 4 of the Work Health and Safety Act (Cth) 2011, are reported in Appendix 7.

Productivity gains

During 2015–16, the ARC continued to review its procedures with a view to streamlining administrative processes and systems for ARC staff as well as for clients of the ARC’s NCGP and ERA.

The People and Services section redeveloped the human resources pages of the ARC’s intranet to provide an easy-to-navigate source of accurate and useful information for all employees in relation to employment conditions; career development; health and wellbeing; and learning and development.

The ARC also implemented an Online Governance and Risk management Enterprise system as a central source for the collection and collation of risk management, compliance and other governance information. Automation of the collection and collation of this information has reduced the time spent on these functions and strengthened the contribution of planning and reporting activities to decision making.