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The Australian Government invested heavily in human resources for ASADA, increasing capacity by 50% in 2018–19, which continued into 2019–20. This provided ASADA with the necessary skills and capabilities to deliver on its key priorities and respond effectively to the challenges posed by an increasingly sophisticated doping environment.

A key challenge faced by ASADA's workforce in 2019–20 was the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. The significant investment in IT capability during 2019–20 allowed our people to quickly adapt to a changed work environment with all staff having remote working access, which placed us at the forefront of government when it came to remaining agile and responsive in such an unprecedented situation. During this time, our people were focused on key priorities and were able to redeploy to other areas of the business or parts of government as necessary. ASADA made available 8 ongoing/non-ongoing staff and 51 casual staff to assist the government in its response to the pandemic, with 6 casual staff redeployed to Services Australia.

Inclusion and Development Initiative (IDI)

ASADA committed to reflecting the diversity of the Australian community in its workforce by building an inclusive culture to respect and celebrate differences. Diversity in experiences, backgrounds, skills, talents and views enriched ASADA's working environment and capacity to deliver outcomes for the Australian sporting community.

ASADA recognised the benefits of fostering an inclusive environment where people from diverse backgrounds can thrive. ASADA supported staff to feel included regardless of gender, impairment, cultural background, sexual orientation or ethnicity. In addition, the agency committed to helping staff develop skills and expertise to reach their career goals, thus ensuring ASADA continued to improve its operations and succeeded in achieving its vision of ‘clean, fair sport’.

The Inclusion and Development Initiative (IDI) was established during 2018–19 to support organisational change. In 2019–20, the IDI:

  • surveyed staff to gain insights into views on how ASADA supports inclusion and development, and what can be done to improve it, as well as understanding what staff want from their IDI
  • established a Workplace Champions group to bring together individuals with relevant expertise and experience to promote employee engagement, demonstrate dedication to improving areas within ASADA and advocate a voice for all staff
  • introduced story-telling sessions in recognition of the diverse experiences and perspectives within the working group. Sessions included a faith and celebration talk about Ramadan and personal perspectives based on gender and sexual orientation
  • promoted opportunities to attend forums such as the Women in Sport Summit in Melbourne and International Women’s Day events
  • provided staff with access to memberships of a number of networks and committees, including the International Network of Doping Research, Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, Australian and New Zealand Sports Law Association and Australian Institute of Professional Investigators
  • promoted ASADA as an employer of choice for Indigenous Australians by signing up to the 2020–21 Indigenous Australian Government Development Program.

Dr David Hughes presents ‘Transgender in Sport’ to ASADA staff in July 2019.
Dr David Hughes presents ‘Transgender in Sport’ to ASADA staff in July 2019.

Jawun secondment

ASADA was successful in having its first employee selected for a 6-week secondment in February/March 2020 to the Jawun Program.

Established in 2001, Jawun partners with Indigenous communities in place-based capacity building to empower Indigenous-led change and foster meaningful connections between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. Jawun placed skilled people from Australia’s leading companies and government agencies into Indigenous organisations. Indigenous leaders have clear development goals and strategies so, in this 2-way learning model, secondees bring skills and knowledge to turbo change powerful vision into necessary reform.

ASADA’s placement was in Broome, WA with Nirrumbuk Aboriginal Corporation (NAC) – NAC’s vision is ‘to end hardship, suffering, and helplessness in Indigenous people within the Kimberley region by building capacity and fostering self-sufficiency’.

This is an excerpt of the secondee’s experience:

‘… A bit about my Jawun family up here, which is fitting seeing as ‘Jawun’ means ‘family or friend’. Our ‘team leader’ is Corinne who is the Regional Director for West Kimberley. She’s been in the role for about 3 years and is amazing for her positive energy, passion for the community and her local networks. The team comprises 7 of us as secondees – 2 males and 5 females; from Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane and Perth; skill sets include a lawyer, civil engineer and social worker; and other home organisations are National Australia Bank, KPMG, Defence, RAC Insurance and Woodside.

‘Induction week was a cultural baptism of fire, mostly in the sense of facing up to the challenges to our Indigenous community; locally, regional and nationally. My take on these challenges includes youth suicide; translating government initiative and funding into more impactful reform programs ‘on the ground’ i.e. having a seat at the table; finding economic stability through regional Indigenous business ventures; and preservation and growing of culture (including language and identity).

‘The influx of knowledge and growth of deeper understanding, as well as climatising, was enjoyed through visits to Kimberley Stolen Generation Aboriginal Corporation; Kimberley Land Council; a day trip to ‘Country’ at Eco Beach (Karajarri Country) for spear fishing, dragnetting, boomerang making and many chats about tradition and culture; a creative art workshop during which we designed and printed our own tea towels; 3 Welcomes to Country, 2 of which included a ‘smoking ceremony’; a private dinner meeting with 3 impressive young leaders to chat ‘unfiltered’ about perceptions, bias and stereotypes; adventures through the mangroves and semi-swamp whilst mud crabbing; a 4WD drive course across coastal rock and inland on the deep red dirt which is so typical of the region; and learning the more complete pearling history of Broome, which involves pretty awful and untold elements of slavery and abuse.

‘Working with the Nirrumbuk Employment Services (NES) folk has inducted me into the mindset of service delivery roles and in this instance the fantastic nuance of all staff being crystal clear of the objective for every ‘client’ who walks in the door – help them on the pathway to finding a job. In developing the NES business plan, this clarity has been a key point to pivot around as we’ve discussed aspects of NES culture, governance, leadership, communication and capability.

‘My dealings with broader Nirrumbuk staff (outside of NES), from the CEO down, has stimulated much thought around the impact of my Jawun role, different leadership styles, work-life balance, time management and staff engagement. I’ve learnt the weight of influence that comes with being a Jawun secondee and to respect and manage that cautiously, as well as pondering what will characterise the small imprint I leave with Nirrumbuk– right now I’d chose that to be (1) people are most important, (2) communication is critical, (3) find positivity in everything you do/say.

‘So far as deliverables, the comprehensive business plan has come together really well, guided by a methodology I’ve learnt up here and which I look forward to bringing back to ASADA. The remainder of my time will be divided between review of risk, shaping future Jawun project briefs and the Nirrumbuk strategic plan.’​

ASADA Director, Dion McVie, receives a welcome to Karajarri Country
ASADA Director, Dion McVie, receives a welcome to Karajarri Country.

The Jawun ‘family’ meet as part of the induction to the program
The Jawun ‘family’ meet as part of the induction to the program.

Integra partnership

ASADA was a strong supporter for positive mental wellbeing with initiatives during 2019–20 including:

  • the Employee Assistance Program
  • the Inclusion and Diversity Initiative providing a number of avenues that promote wellbeing (diversity, inclusion, networking, learning and development, employment opportunity for staff with disabilities)
  • training staff in mental health first aid
  • counselling services for athletes under investigation of doping
  • the Athlete Advisory Group to understand the impacts of our work on athletes
  • incorporating mental health into our education programs.

As an integral part of this strategy, ASADA partnered with Integra Service Dogs Australia (Integra), a not-for-profit organisation with a mission to train highly effective service dogs as a support for veterans and first responders who suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

The service dogs help provide security, assistance, friendship, confidence and a renewed purpose for those individuals suffering from PTSD. Research suggests interaction with animals can assist with positive mental wellbeing. While the objective of the partnership between Integra and ASADA was initially to have Integra service dogs socialised in the workplace to help increase mental health wellbeing, this was not the only objective. The partnership was an opportunity for government to support a small registered charity focused primarily on helping others and promoting mental wellbeing and creating a template for other government agencies to follow.

Through supporting Integra, ASADA provided foster carers and a place where service dogs could continue the final stage of their training before being introduced and transferred to those suffering from PTSD and other mental health issues.

Further, the partnership created a welcoming workplace environment to individuals suffering from PTSD and other mental health issues, demonstrated ASADA’s commitment to making them feel supported and provided the hope of being able to consider their return to the workplace.

For our staff engaging in the foster program, the experience Integra provided was first class. The fostering period can last anywhere between 2 to 6 weeks while Integra provide support every step of the way. Every foster carer loved the experience and are putting their hand up for the next opportunity. It is an experience that will stay with them for life in the knowledge they are supporting the imperative work Integra does in the community and those veterans and first responders who represent us and worked for us.​

Foster carer and ASADA Director Legal, Regina Weiss, with her son Eddie and service dog Vixen
Foster carer and ASADA Director Legal, Regina Weiss, with her son Eddie and service dog Vixen.

Deputy CEO Legal, Education & Corporate, Darren Mullaly (centre), with members of the Integra team in August 2019.
Deputy CEO Legal, Education & Corporate, Darren Mullaly (centre), with members of the Integra team in August 2019.

ASADA wellness sessions

One of the key activities on ASADA’s 2019–20 mental health and wellbeing program was delivered through the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff and their families were able to take valuable skills and practically apply them during this time.

The Skills and Talent group worked closely with the Wellbeing Science Institute to survey staff and determine preferred topics for the workshops. The series of 6 workshops explored the latest research on neuroscience and how it relates to effectiveness at work and in life with a general focus on wellbeing.

The first face-to-face session was successfully delivered in February 2020 and then, due to the pandemic, the remaining 5 workshops were delivered via a virtual session to staff in their homes. Each session was recorded and saved on the intranet for future access. The topics and the key learnings of each of session were:

  1. Our Brain at Work – This workshop delivered greater understanding of the key functions of the brain and how it impacts effectiveness at work (and in life) including judgement, decision making, communication, emotions, relationships, learning, engagement and performance.
  2. Getting a Good Night’s Sleep – particularly in challenging times. With the pandemic, this was a perfectly timed workshop which focused on the latest research on sleep, the benefits and the practices that enhance sleep. The workshop provided participants tools, including a Good Night’s Sleep Action Plan, and methods to focus on putting good sleep practices into place during challenging times.
  3. The Art of Focus – This workshop looked at the reality of today’s world of work and the challenges faced in maintaining focus on priorities, value-adding behaviours and tasks. Participants were shown strategies and techniques for building new habits of focus and ways to improve their working environment to minimise the distractions and challenges to focused attention.
  4. Creating your Customised Wellbeing Plan – This workshop provided participants the opportunity to create a customised wellbeing plan using tools that help identify areas that are most important to each individual. Participants also explored their values and strengths to help identify the wellbeing goals that matter most to them.
  5. Positive Relationships – An evidence-based framework on relationship management was shared to build an enhanced understanding of the characteristics of positive relationships and the process and skills required for building and maintaining positive relationships. Participants were able to assess their approach to relationship management and the opportunities for improvement. With a focus on communication skills to help identify those skills that will most positively impact their key relationships both at work and personally.
  6. Life Design Approach to Careers – A holistic and 21st-century approach to career management was introduced – the Life Design Approach. In this practical workshop, participants were able to utilise this holistic career management approach to review and enhance their current career plan.

It was great to have a mix of participants from across the states and in the field. Those who attended provided positive feedback on the content, and the value and the learnings from the sessions.

Workforce composition

All Ongoing Employees Current Report Period (2019–20)

Male

Female

Indeterminate

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

NSW

0

0

0

1

0

1

0

0

0

1

Qld

0

0

0

1

0

1

0

0

0

1

SA

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tas

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Vic

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

WA

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

ACT

26

3

29

27

6

33

0

0

0

62

NT

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

External Territories

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Overseas

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

27

3

30

29

6

35

0

0

0

65

All Non-Ongoing Employees Current Report Period (2019–20)

Male

Female

Indeterminate

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

NSW

0

0

30

30

0

0

23

23

0

0

0

0

53

Qld

0

0

27

27

0

0

20

20

0

0

0

0

47

SA

0

0

10

10

0

0

9

9

0

0

0

0

19

Tas

0

0

10

10

0

0

6

6

0

0

0

0

16

Vic

0

0

26

26

0

0

17

17

0

0

0

0

43

WA

0

0

14

14

0

0

12

12

0

0

0

0

26

ACT

3

1

8

12

3

1

12

16

0

0

1

1

29

NT

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

External Territories

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Overseas

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

3

1

125

129

3

1

99

103

0

0

1

1

233

Australian Public Service Act Ongoing Employees Current Report Period (2019–20)

Male

Female

Indeterminate

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

SES 3

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

SES 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

SES 1

1

0

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

2

EL 2

6

0

6

5

0

5

0

0

0

11

EL 1

9

2

11

5

2

7

0

0

0

18

APS 6

6

1

7

14

3

17

0

0

0

24

APS 5

3

0

3

3

1

4

0

0

0

7

APS 4

1

0

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

2

APS 3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Other

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

27

3

30

29

6

35

0

0

0

65

Australian Public Service Act Non-Ongoing Employees Current Report Period (2019–20)

Male

Female

Indeterminate

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

SES 3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

SES 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

SES 1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

EL 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

EL 1

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

APS 6

1

1

0

2

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

3

APS 5

2

0

0

2

2

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

4

APS 4

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 3

0

0

19

19

0

0

28

28

0

0

0

0

47

APS 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 1

0

0

106

106

0

0

71

71

0

0

1

1

178

Other

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

3

1

125

129

3

1

99

103

0

0

1

1

233

Australian Public Service Act Indigenous Employment Current Report Period (2019–20)

Total

Ongoing

0

Non-ongoing

0

Casual

1

Total

1

Australian Public Service Act Employment Salary Ranges by Classification Level (Minimum/Maximum) Current Report Period (2019–20)

Minimum salary

Maximum salary

SES 3

$319,750

$319,750

SES 2

0

0

SES 1

$206,040

$247,248

EL 2

$121,410

$162,792

EL 1

$107,395

$117,047

APS 6

$93,473

$102,012

APS 5

$83,138

$90,262

APS 4

$73,701

$81,043

APS 3

$62,197

$69,766

APS 2

$50,989

$60,209

APS 1

$42,084

$48,395

Other

0

0

Minimum/Maximum range

$42,084

$319,750

Australian Public Service Act Employees by Full-time and Part-time Status Current Report Period (2019–20)

Ongoing

Non-ongoing

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

SES 3

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

SES 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

SES 1

2

0

2

0

0

0

0

2

EL 2

11

0

11

0

0

0

0

11

EL 1

14

4

18

0

1

0

1

19

APS 6

20

4

24

2

1

0

3

27

APS 5

6

1

7

4

0

0

4

11

APS 4

2

0

2

0

0

0

0

2

APS 3

0

0

0

0

0

47

47

47

APS 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 1

0

0

0

0

0

178

178

178

Other

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

56

9

65

6

2

225

233

298

Australian Public Service Act Employees by Full-time and Part-time Status Previous Report Period (2018–19)

Ongoing

Non-ongoing

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Total

Full-time

Part-time

Casual

Total

SES 3

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

SES 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

SES 1

2

0

2

0

0

0

0

2

EL 2

8

0

8

0

0

0

0

8

EL 1

18

0

18

1

1

0

2

20

APS 6

14

3

17

3

0

0

3

20

APS 5

3

1

4

8

0

0

8

12

APS 4

5

0

5

0

1

0

1

6

APS 3

0

0

0

0

0

55

55

55

APS 2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

APS 1

0

0

0

0

0

216

216

216

Other

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

51

4

55

12

2

271

285

340

Australian Public Service Act Employment Type by location Current Report Period (2019–20)

Ongoing

Non-ongoing

Total

NSW

1

53

54

Qld

1

47

48

SA

0

19

19

Tas

0

16

16

Vic

1

43

44

WA

0

26

26

ACT

62

29

91

NT

0

0

0

External Territories

0

0

0

Overseas

0

0

0

Total

65

233

298

Australian Public Service Act Employment Type by location Previous Report Period (2018–19)

Ongoing

Non-ongoing

Total

NSW

1

70

71

Qld

0

68

68

SA

0

18

18

Tas

0

18

18

Vic

1

44

45

WA

0

30

30

ACT

53

37

90

NT

0

0

0

External Territories

0

0

0

Overseas

0

0

0

Total

55

285

340

Workforce planning

During 2019–20, ASADA continued with its strategic workforce planning to support delivery of a leading anti-doping program while maintaining consistency with government policy on average staffing levels.

During this time, the agency prepared for its future role in Sport Integrity Australia and developed a recruitment strategy aimed at complementing existing skillsets and acquiring new skills to address future sport integrity matters.

ASADA actively encouraged secondments and resource-sharing arrangements with relevant government departments and law enforcement and regulatory agencies.

The agency utilised recruitment practices that encouraged diversity among its workforce, including participation in the Indigenous Australian Government Development Program.

Learning and development

To build a capable workforce, the agency focused on utilising different training methods and provided learning opportunities to address future challenges staff in the agency may face. In addition, ASADA implemented secondment opportunities for its staff at other government agencies, as well as approving flexible work arrangements for staff members.

In 2019–20, ASADA commenced an ongoing secondment arrangement with the Department of Home Affairs Legal Division. A Home Affairs lawyer joined the ASADA Legal team on a 6-month rotational basis, an arrangement which is set to continue into the new agency, Sport Integrity Australia.

The COVID-19 pandemic provided challenges when it came to planned delivery methods; however, the agency was quick to adapt and continued many of the learning and development opportunities via online mediums. A major initiative rolled out during 2019–20 of particular assistance to staff during the pandemic was a 6-month wellbeing education program including topics chosen by staff, such as physical wellbeing, our brain at work and the art of focus.

Australian Olympic Committee Head of Public Affairs and Communication, Strath Gordon, talks to ASADA staff in November 2019 on the importance of communications in a crisis.
Australian Olympic Committee Head of Public Affairs and Communication, Strath Gordon, talks to ASADA staff in November 2019 on the importance of communications in a crisis.

Employment arrangements

SES

Non-SES

Total

Australian Sports Anti-Doping Enterprise Agreement 2017–20

0

295

295

Section 24(1) Determination

2

0

2

Total

2

295

297

This information excludes the ASADA CEO, whose terms and conditions of employment are set by the Remuneration Tribunal.

Enterprise agreement

The ASADA enterprise agreement came into effect on 1 February 2018 and expires in February 2021.

The ASADA Enterprise Agreement 2017–20 sets out the terms and conditions of ASADA’s non-Senior Executive Service (SES) staff.

Section 24(1) determinations

In 2019–20, the terms and conditions of employment of the SES employees were set by determination under section 24(1) of the Public Service Act 1999.

Performance pay

Performance pay was not available to ASADA staff. In accordance with the ASADA Enterprise Agreement 2017–20, the Performance and Career Enrichment Scheme enabled incremental salary advancements. Employees receiving a rating of fully effective or higher were eligible for incremental salary advancement where they were below the maximum salary range for their classification.

Workplace Health and Safety

Information regarding WHS is included in the appendices.

National Disability Strategy

The National Disability Strategy 2010–2020, is 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, 2-yearly report will track progress against each of the 6 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.