A key focus of the One Finance project is to make Finance the best place to work in government by enhancing the skills and capabilities of our staff and creating a diverse and inclusive culture.
Several key achievements this year have brought us closer to our objective.
Finance transitions to a collaborative work environment
In 2018, Finance transitioned to Activity Based Work (ABW) – a flexible and community-based work environment that offers a variety of spaces relevant to specific work being undertaken.
Our ABW office is separated into three distinct zones:
- Collaboration zone – where staff can brainstorm and collaborate freely.
- Focus zone – a quiet area (no phones) where staff can read or focus on specific tasks.
- Process zone - for standard work practices.
Staff members do not have an assigned desk but rather select the type of work setting that best suits their work activities for the day or a portion of the day. Teams are assigned to ‘home bases’ but are encouraged to work alongside other teams as needed.
The creation of an ABW workplace for Finance at the Optima Centre in Osborne Park has not only enabled the consolidation of approximately 200 staff from the CBD to this space and saving of nearly $2 million per annum, but also supports:
- a culture of flexibility and mobility;
- a paper-light environment through follow-me printing;
- greater collaboration between groups and individuals across the business; and
- greater application of technology to enable more agile work practices.
Finance is now working with the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage to deliver ABW within their existing office space at Gordon Stephenson House, and the Departments of Transport and Communities for their new ABW workplace in Fremantle. These transitions will result in approximately 800 Department of Planning Lands and Heritage staff consolidating across two floors and approximately 1,500 staff moving to Fremantle.
Finance is also conducting regular tours and presentations about ABW with other government agencies.
Interagency mentoring program
Finance’s Interagency Mentoring Program is in its fourteenth year and over that time has helped 880 participants across the public sector to build their knowledge and experience.
Nine agencies are participating in the program across the 2019 calendar year with 103 mentors and mentees paired from different agencies, providing opportunities to grow employee networks and facilitate future collaboration.
The Interagency Mentoring Program provides a forum to build relationships and capability across the public sector by:
- facilitating quality mentee/mentor matches;
- developing and improving professional competence;
- supporting networking and knowledge exchange across the sector; and
- providing guidance in developing career goals.
The program supports the Government’s Public Sector Reform initiatives by offering employees at all levels the opportunity to engage in an environment that supports sector-wide leadership, cooperation and collaboration.
Training and events
Finance is committed to building capability and supporting staff at all levels to achieve their personal and professional goals. Our training and development programs focus on enabling a highly-skilled workforce to think innovatively about the way services are delivered to the community and provide value-for-money outcomes for all Western Australians.
In 2018-19, staff participated in a broad range of development opportunities, many of which were delivered in-house by our own experienced staff and through online systems to minimise costs. These are outlined below:
- approximately 1,400 staff undertook industry specific training, such as Project Management, Contract Negotiation and Asset Management;
- technical skills training, such as Workflow Mastery, Advance Skype Functions and Power BI was undertaken up by 900 staff members;
- innovation and future skills training including Design Thinking, Strategic Planning, Growth Mindset and Innovation workshops with guest speakers was conducted for 200 staff;
- personal and professional development was popular this year with approximately 1,200 participating in courses such as Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Confidence for Women and Personal Productivity; and
- training specific to working in the public sector, such as Occupational Health and Safety, Disability, Access and Inclusion, Cultural Awareness and Accountable and Ethical Decision-making was undertaken by 1,800 staff.
Our role in the regions
Through our 12 regional offices, Finance facilitates the delivery of building maintenance services, the management of non-residential building projects, and planning and delivery of services for government assets.
Some of the key services provided to our client agencies in the regions include:
- 24/7 breakdown repair services;
- urgent works in emergencies caused by cyclones, flooding, storms, earthquakes, bushfires and major acts of vandalism;
- building condition assessments and the development of strategic maintenance plans;
- planning and delivery of maintenance programs; and
- coordination of building projects which includes managing the tender process with particular consideration to government’s Buy Local Policy, support for Aboriginal businesses, value-for-money assurances and risk management, as well as project management including administration, quality control, practical completion and handover.
This year has seen some major achievements for our regional offices including:
- on-time, on-budget delivery of the Dolphin Discovery Centre on behalf of the City of Bunbury. The Centre showcases the latest interactive marine display with interactions with wild dolphins. This project is a big boost for tourism for the City;
- numerous police station upgrades across the regions;
- recommissioning of workshops at the South Hedland TAFE after these had been shut down; and
- delivery of a number of programs of work for the Department of Education (schools), including ceiling remediation/replacement, asbestos removal and other upgrades.