Headcount caps within Australian Public Service departments continue to see the number of contract roles rise in order to meet workload demands. Contract roles will also remain available as a result of restructures.
While a contingent workforce is required for planned legislative and operational reform initiatives, longer-term the focus will shift to contract roles.
Candidate levels continue to decrease as certain state government departments convert contract hires into permanent staff. There is an abundance of regulatory, governance and economics roles and a need for cross-specialised candidates such as those with data and policy expertise.
Hotspots of demand
Experienced Policy Officers with strong written and analytical capabilities remain in high demand to progress government initiatives.
Legal Policy experts are still required to support legislative reform processes, while regulatory policy experience is sought due to an increase in regulatory requirements and crossover with policy roles.
Data Analysts and Economists are another area of short supply. There is a lack of Data Analysts due to the technical aspects of the role but all policies need evidence-based proof and programs need to be evaluated for their efficiency.
Subject matter experts in planning, valuation, risk, governance and regulation remain in high demand as reforms are enacted.
Project Officers and Senior Project Officers are also needed to coordinate the implementation of new policies and projects within set timeframes and according to defined deliverables, as well as to engage with stakeholders. Those with experience in driving change are valued.
Candidates with skills in business case development are needed to support funding submissions. Candidates need the ability to succinctly articulate why a government should be allocated a certain amount of funding in order to achieve a particular goal.
Cabinet Submissions experts are in need to inform Cabinet and propose requirements that will complement change programs.
Finally, Budget Bids Officers and Budget Coordinators are sought after to assist with budget bid submissions.
As noted last quarter, in a candidate short market the best jobseekers are offered permanent roles. However, many candidates prefer the flexibility that temporary or contract roles offer.
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