Annual Report 2016 - Part one
Section 19B reports
The Vote Education Section 19B Report in Relation to Non-Departmental Appropriations for the year ended 30 June 2016 was presented to the House in accordance with section 19B of the Public Finance Act 1989 on 20 October 2016.
Parts 2 and 3 of the Annual Report 2016
Download the full Annual Report 2016 to view:
- Part 2 — Statements of service Performance
- Part 3 — Annual financial statements.
Amendment to the report
Since being tabled, the Statement of Cash Flows has been amended for a minor editorial error.
Building capability and managing responsibly
We are continuing to improve our strategy, planning and financial management, in order to better align our resources to strategic outcomes.
Our Four Year Plan 2015-2019 was tabled in Parliament in October 2015. It was set up as a document which staff and other stakeholders can get behind and support. We began an update of the Four Year Plan 2016-2020 and Long Term Investment Plan in order to support Ministerial decision-making for Budget 2016.
During 2015/16, we began our Finance Transformation Programme which aims to reduce fiscal risk, improve financial management, reduce ongoing operating costs, and position core systems and processes to better support the policy and service delivery activities of the Ministry. This includes creating a sustainable financial position in the medium term through the financial flexibility allowed under the Public Finance Act 1989 and broader thinking about funding options, as well as building a long-term strategic view of the Ministry’s 10-year financial trajectory based on current policy settings and economic projections. Improved finance information will improve the clarity of decision-making about where to prioritise funding to maximise results.
Through improved finance systems and processes we will be better supported to manage funds appropriately and reduce risk, allowing for a focus on the delivery of agreed work priorities.
We are developing an Investment Management Framework which will enable us to cost, select, manage and evaluate our investments across operating and capital expenditure so that resources are allocated to areas of highest value and benefits are tracked.
Our procurement function plays a significant role in supporting the delivery of the Ministry’s key priorities. We have more than 5,000 active contracts with an annual spend of more than $1.3 billion through third party providers covering a wide range of categories including education and social services, transport services, information and technology, and property infrastructure.
Procurement and commercial expertise is provided to a wide range of stakeholders ensuring alignment with the Government’s functional lead for procurement and the development of best practice guidance and support. By the end of 2016 we will have updated our systems with the implementation of purchase to pay capability. This will create self-service channels for the purchase of goods and services, improve the transparency and visibility of the Ministry spend and reduce administration costs through the automation of business processes.
Developing our people
We have developed and agreed a People Strategy to better support the Ministry’s continued focus on building our capability. Our priorities are to:
- create a strong brand and reputation as an employer
- be recognised as a great place to work
- develop our top talent and lift our capability
- reposition and revitalise our people capability function to support the organisation.
We have developed an in-house programme on leadership which provides development for all people leaders. We enhance this programme with leadership insights for all staff who show future leadership potential. We are fully integrated with the State Services Commission Talent Management framework ensuring future leaders have access to School of Government leadership courses.
As at 30 June 2016, we have approximately 2,600 full-time equivalent (FTE) working from about 35 locations around New Zealand and in the national office. Our staff cap remains at 2,740 FTE positions.
We have made progress in filling our vacancies to ensure we have a strong and diverse workforce to deliver on our strategic outcomes. We have performed strongly in a number of equal employment opportunity areas, particularly Māori in senior management (7.8%, an increase from last year) and representation of women in management (61%).
In 2015/16, the Ministry went through significant changes, with staff leaving employment with the Ministry (14.7% unplanned turnover, 12.3% in 2014/15) remaining higher than the public sector average (10.9% in June 2015). We are continuing to use exit interviews to better understand the reasons why people leave.
We are retaining a high percentage of staff in their first 2 years of employment. As at the end of June 2016, 94.6% of new employees who started within a year, and 90.4% of those who started within 2 years, remained employed with us.
Health and Safety at Work Act 2015
In addition to supporting the sector (see page 17), we ran a health and safety worker representative nomination process within the Ministry, which enhanced this representation across the organisation.
We also completed our internal policies and procedures update and have increased governance oversight of health and safety through the introduction of a dedicated Leadership Team sub-committee. This has positioned us to drive an enterprise-wide programme of work to address key health and safety risks.
We also strengthened the procurement, contract and project management health and safety practices for education infrastructure contractors and suppliers. We conducted independent safety audits, reviews of contractors, specific school construction sites, and the school transport arrangements which we fund. New guidance material and processes have been developed to support this.
Improving our infrastructure
Accommodating our people
We successfully relocated the national office to Mātauranga House on Bowen Street, Wellington over the Christmas 2015/New Year 2016 break with staff settling into the new environment well. The move reduced our office space from 22,500 square metres to around 16,500 square metres, generating savings of about $1.8 million a year in accommodation and running costs.
We have begun the roll-out of the Skype telephony functionality across the Ministry’s regional offices. The roll-out is expected to be completed by the end of 2016 and will mean we can decommission the old telephony environment. Skype enables better technology connection between sites, provides greater scope for collaboration among our people and will help reduce the need for routine travel.
In Christchurch, we are developing new office accommodation as part of the wider government move back into the Christchurch CBD. We have entered into a Development Agreement with Ngai Tahu Property for the King Edward Barracks site. This is a new building in the city’s West End, formerly the Christchurch Central Police Station, on the corner of Hereford Street and Cambridge Terrace. This move sees us as the lead agency in a co-location with the Ministry of Health.
As regional offices become due for refurbishment or relocation and as funding is available, we will continue to support our people to work in new ways as we implement ‘flexible working environments’.
Upgrading our asset management system
The first stage of the Helios application, which supports the cost-effective management of the school property portfolio, went live in April 2016. Work continues to expand the functionality of the application with a subsequent release to be completed by February 2017.
The completed system will enable tracking of progress on all school property works, and provide the level of information needed about the condition and performance of assets to support the early identification of issues and opportunities to achieve capital efficiencies.
Improving our information management systems
We have a programme of work underway focused on improving our information management. We have put in place a significant data warehouse that will make available our school information and we are working to create a single tertiary data warehouse.
Our next step will be to focus on making our learner information more accessible and improving access to this information by all sector participants.
Enhancing privacy and security
A key priority for all of our people is ensuring that our customers’ sensitive information is kept safe and secure. Privacy and appropriate use of data is a key consideration in everything we do.
In 2016, the Ministry completed comprehensive self-assessments against the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Protective Security Requirements and Government Chief Privacy Officer Privacy Standards, establishing security and privacy maturity targets. This has informed our programme of work to build our capability in the physical, information and personnel security areas. It has also positioned us to make improvements to our processes and policies, to ensure our data handling and privacy undertakings are as robust as possible.