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Survey of OPC staff

During May and June 2019, the Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) conducted the 2019 State of the Service Employee Census. Eighty-nine per cent of OPC staff participated in the survey, ensuring that the results we obtained were representative.

Overall, OPC’s results for 2019 were largely consistent with the 2018 results. There were some areas that we improved on and some areas where results were less positive. However, in nearly all areas the results were higher than the overall APS results for 2019.

The reporting below compares OPC’s results (from staff who responded to the survey) for 2019 to OPC’s results for 2018. Where percentages are set out below, the result in bold is the OPC percentage for 2019 and the result in normal font is the OPC percentage for 2018.

Employee engagement

Employee engagement elements are a measure of how much employees like working for an agency, as well as the emotional connection and commitment employees have to working for an agency. OPC’s overall employee engagement score of 75% for 2019 was the same as OPC’s 2018 score and higher than the APS overall 2019 employee engagement score.

81% of OPC staff agreed that they were proud to work at OPC (compared to 82% in 2018); 96% were happy to go the ‘extra mile’ at work when required (compared to 91% in 2018); 88% felt committed to OPC's goals (compared to 85% in 2018); and 72% felt a strong personal attachment to OPC (compared to 62% in 2018).

Learning and development

OPC staff were more satisfied with access to effective learning and development in 2019 (83% compared to 80%) and more satisfied compared with the APS result for 2019.

Senior leadership (SES) and immediate supervisors

OPC’s results about the SES, both for questions about immediate SES managers and all SES, were less favourable than OPC’s results for 2018. OPC staff agreed that the SES in OPC are of a high quality (81% compared to 84%), and the SES are sufficiently visible (87% compared to 83%). For the response to whether communication between the SES and other employees is effective, the results were less favourable (48% compared to 68%). For the majority of responses, the OPC results about the SES in 2019 were higher than the 2019 APS results.

OPC’s results about their immediate supervisors were largely consistent for 2019 compared to OPC’s results for 2018 (between: 61% and 84% in 2019 compared to 61% and 87% in 2018), but less favourable in most cases compared to the 2019 APS results.

Health, safety and wellbeing

Employee attitudes to health, safety and wellbeing in the workplace continues to be an area with very good results. This area has been an ongoing focus for OPC during 2018-2019.

In 2019, OPC staff agreed that the people in their workgroup were committed to workplace safety (86% compared to 84%); and, considering their work and life priorities, they were satisfied with their work-life balance (83% compared to 80%).

Further, staff were satisfied with the policies/practices and resources in place to help them manage their health and wellbeing (83% compared to 92%). Staff also agreed OPC does a good job of communicating what it can offer in terms of health and wellbeing (90% compared to 95%), and of promoting health and wellbeing (89% compared to 93%), and OPC cares about employee health and wellbeing (73% compared to 86%). In all cases, these results were higher than the 2019 APS results.

APS Values

Staff continued to indicate that people in OPC act in accordance with the APS values. The 2019 results for senior leaders, supervisors and workgroup colleagues were in the range of 87% to 93%, compared to 89% to 94% for OPC in 2018, and consistent with the results for the APS in 2019.


Staff participation in these surveys is a very useful exercise as the results are directly comparable to those of the APS as a whole. The survey results provide information on areas in which we can improve.

The 4 key areas that SMT intend to focus on in 2019-2020 are: valuing our people; building the capability of our staff; inspiring innovation and creativity; and diversity and inclusion.