Australian Public Service (APS)
The Australian Public Service (APS) is the Australian civil service, the group of people employed by departments, agencies and courts under the Government of Australia, to administer the working of the public administration of the Commonwealth of Australia. It formally comprises all persons employed under the Public Service Act 1999. This includes all government departments, the court system and also some government agencies.
In the 2006-07 financial year, there were 155,482 public servants employed under the Public Service Act. This includes 143,525 ongoing (or permanent) employees and 11,957 non-ongoing (or contract) employees.
The Government has appointed a "Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service" to whom is responsible the Public Service Commission, led by a Commissioner, which promotes the APS Values, evaluates performance and compliance, and helps to build the capability of the Service. The Commissioner has both statutory powers and policy responsibilities. The Government also recognises a role for the Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet for certain aspects of leadership of the APS.
Each Department is headed by a Secretary, and each independent authority by an appointed head, whose job description includes the administration of the people in that organisation.
Organizational Structure: The head of an Australian Government Department is the Secretary - like a CEO in the private sector. Secretaries are the pivotal advisors to Ministers on government policy, and lead the executive of their Departments.
Deputy Secretaries (DepSecs) are also part of Departmental executives. Deputy Secretaries hold the Public Service level of Senior Executive Service(SES) Band 3. A Department typically has between four and six Deputy Secretaries.
Deputy Secretaries directly supervise First Assistant Secretaries (FASes) (SES Band 2), each of who oversees a Division of a Department. Second Assistant Secretaries (SASes) (SES Band 1) manage Branches of Divisions. Sections of Branches are headed by Directors (APS Executive Level 2), with the assistance of Assistant Directors (APS Executive Level 1). Directors manage a group of departmental officers (levels APS 1 (being the lowest) to APS 6).