Public officials should demonstrate accountability by:

  • working to clear objectives in a transparent manner; and
  • accepting responsibility for their decisions and actions; and
  • seeking  to achieve best use of resources; and
  • submitting themselves to appropriate scrutiny.

(Public Administration Act 2004, s. 7)

5.1   Working to Clear Objectives

Public sector employees understand the objectives of their role. Public sector managers and supervisors provide encouragement, support and a clear sense of direction and purpose. Employees who are unclear about their goals discuss this with their manager or supervisor.

5.2   Being Responsible for Decisions and Actions

Public sector employees make decisions and take actions within the scope of their authority that are lawful and consistent with relevant legislation and government policy. They consider any impact of their decisions or actions on the Government, community and other public sector employees.

5.3   Work Resources

Public sector employees use work resources and equipment efficiently and only for appropriate purposes as authorised by the employer.

Public sector employees seek to achieve value for money and use resources in the most effective way possible. They identify opportunities for improvement to achieve best possible efficiency and responsiveness.

Work resources include physical, financial, technological and intellectual property. Intellectual property includes copyright, trademarks, registered designs, patents (including patented business systems), semiconductors, circuit layout rights, and trade, business or company names, and all other proprietary rights, and any rights to the registration of such rights, including proprietary rights developed or created by employees in the course of their employment.

The employer retains ownership of all these work resources.

5.4   Open to Scrutiny

Public sector employees implement government policy in an open and transparent manner. They maintain accurate and reliable records as required by relevant legislation, policies and procedures. Records are kept in such a way as to ensure their security and reliability and are made available to appropriate scrutiny when required.

5.5   Ability to Meet Essential Requirements

Public sector employees notify their employer of any loss, suspension of, or change to, a registration, accreditation, licence or other qualification that affects their ability to meet relevant essential requirements or to perform their duties.

5.6   Compliance with Legislation

Public sector employees ensure they are aware of and comply with all legislation relevant to the performance of their duties.