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A Friday note - 20 March 2015

CONNECT - Message from the Chief Executive

Dear all,

Ideal weather around Adelaide; warm days, cool nights and we are set for similar conditions over the weekend – enjoy!

The incidence of motorcycle death and serious injury has increased on our roads. Some of these casualty crashes involve returning riders and it is possible that some crashes may have been avoided if the returning riders had undertaken a refresher training course. A returning rider course has been developed that allows participants to practice the riding skills and techniques essential for riding on the road. Rider Safe is looking for a small number of departmental employees who hold a current motorcycle license to participate in trialling this course on Friday 10 April. Please see the intranet for details.

As I mentioned last week, the transition plan has been updated to reflect the amended time frames for transition. The key change refers to 30 June 2015 as the completion date for employees to be transitioned into the new structures, pursuant to the transition principles.

We are continuing our series of fortnightly meetings with DPTI’s leaders, this week focusing on communication and consultation. I’ve had some questions about how employees can contribute to the DPTI Rejuvenation Consultative Forum.

Remember to look out for your colleagues; the person next to you is more than likely going through the same things as you are.

The approved risk and assurance structure was released on Tuesday and the transition has commenced. The structure was also discussed at the Audit and Risk Committee on Tuesday where the first strategic risk profile report was provided. Much of the feedback has been genuinely positive about the opportunities this structure presents and support for a positive, new culture. Change can be difficult and it is great to see the approach staff in the new Risk and Assurance section are taking and their commitment to the rejuvenation.

A lot of work has been going into developing an accommodation strategy for the department to support our new organisational environment. While there is still more to be done before a final plan can be released, a number of key principles have been agreed. The Chief Executive, Chiefs and General Managers will be located together at Roma Mitchell House, with Managers located with their teams across CBD, metropolitan and regional areas. While our key locations will continue to include a mix of Divisions to facilitate collaboration between areas, new teams will be brought together where it makes sense to do this.  The accommodation strategy is not about moving all staff or about refreshing our building environment – where possible moves will be kept to a minimum and existing fit outs will remain. 

What can we do? A number of staff have approached me suggesting they would be interested in moving to part time roles if they could take on a young person and provide some training, particularly in our regional offices and workforces. If you are interested in this direct support for our community please raise with your manager as a first step.

Nominations for enrolment in the 2015 Transformative Leadership Program are now open. This program has been developed specifically to meet the needs of senior, or soon-to become senior, state government leaders. Targeting executives across the sector, the program is designed to enhance the complex thinking capabilities of high performing professionals who are already able to think strategically, work effectively in teams and who are open to new perspectives. At this stage we will be looking to place one participant from DPTI in the 2015 program (each program is limited to 12 SA public sector employees).

The Commissioner for Public Sector Employment, Erma Ranieri launched the Community Engagement Toolkit for our department this week. This is a great resource and I encourage all staff to give more consideration to how we can further improve engagement with communities and stakeholders in our work. We need to better engage and we need to engage early. Working in partnership with our community results in better outcomes for all.  We have seen some wonderful results recently. Well done to Lisa Alexander for her work on building the toolkit.

While we are close to bedding in new, clearer processes for ministerials I am pleased to report a considerable improvement in quality. Short sharp letters dealing with the issue, non-technical in nature, empathetic and advising what we can do to help wherever possible make a huge difference.

A reminder that all staff should be familiar with the department’s internet policy.

Dispossessing someone from their home to build a community facility such as a road, can be very distressing for all involved. Our staff involved rarely get an accolade but can I acknowledge all their work and offer my support in doing everything we can to do this as best we can.

Thank you to everyone involved in the bilateral process this year. A special thanks to Jude Formston and her team for co-ordinating everyone's efforts. The formal meetings finished yesterday and it was clear that a huge amount of work had gone into preparing for these - often with short notice. This paid off in that our key issues were well understood and considered credible. Clearly some opportunities to improve this process at both the whole of government and department level to reduce the amount of work required in future. This will be pursued.

Next week Rob Taverner will be leaving us after six and a half years with the department. For the majority of this time, Rob has been involved in establishing an Asset Management System for public transport assets and has also had responsibility for overseeing the bus purchases and the Fleet and Depot Maintenance group. More recently, Rob has been Acting Manager Procurement. Rob’s leadership and contribution to all of these areas has been greatly appreciated and I wish him well in the future.

I continue to be buoyed by the feedback that I see from our customers taking the time to write of their positive experiences. It is particularly satisfying in a time when we are moving to be more transparent, more customer-focused and deliver even better outcomes for all.

Have a good weekend.

Michael Deegan