Performance expectations

These are the performance standards we expect of employees at their classification level in all branches.

These expectations do not replace – but are aligned with – the APSC Work Level Standards and the National Archives Capability Framework.

APS 1

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Keeps track of how tasks are progressing and acts to address obstacles to delivering results.
  • Adheres to relevant quality standards in completion of work.
  • Manages their own time effectively to accomplish tasks.

Flexible thinking

  • Is open to new information and views from diverse standpoints.
  • Accepts new work, using skills to support the team.
  • Asks for assistance when needed.

Self confidence

  • Consults with their supervisor to clarify work goals.
  • Raises issues with their supervisor as soon as they arise.

Collaborative working

  • Shares all relevant or useful information.
  • Supports team decisions, is a valued team player, respects others, does their share of the work.
  • Supports effective stakeholder relationships.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Can identify the key people, processes and technologies that are essential for their role.
  • Has a basic understanding of the agency’s role and functions.

Build organisational capability

  • Participates in the development of work area goals and objectives.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Participates in the implementation of change.

APS 2

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Takes action that leads to the delivery of agreed performance targets, goals or service standards.
  • Shows determination to meet the objectives set by others.
  • Follows their supervisor’s direction.

Flexible thinking

  • Is open to and aware of relevant technological changes.
  • Modifies their own thinking, and assumptions, to take account of new and diverse viewpoints.
  • Responds flexibly to changes in team plans and schedules.

Self confidence

  • Accepts new work, applying skills flexibly to meet demands.
  • Consults others when problems arise, seeking approval from their supervisor before implementing solutions.

Collaborative working

  • Keeps other team members informed and up to date about what is happening in the group.
  • Supports and maintains effective stakeholder relationships.
  • Builds relationships within their team to work as a supportive and co-operative team member.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Understands how different areas within the agency are related and who the key people are.
  • Has a general understanding of the role and functions of the agency; is aware of issues that may impact on the delivery of allocated work tasks.

Build organisational capability

  • Contributes ideas to the development of work area goals and objectives.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Contributes ideas and participates in the implementation of change in the workplace.

APS 3

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Is constantly looking for ways to do things better.
  • Makes specific changes in their own work methods to improve performance.
  • Makes administrative and operational decisions relating to their area of responsibility and following established procedures and protocols.
  • Finds workable solutions to problems, seeking advice from supervisor on the best course of action.

Flexible thinking

  • Demonstrates a willingness to change ideas and perceptions based on new information.
  • Has a general understanding of technological changes.
  • Accepts new work, applying skills flexibly to meet a range of demands.
  • Seeks advice about where to find information required to complete tasks.

Self confidence

  • Draws on their own relevant experience.
  • Takes responsibility for seeing their own work tasks through to completion.
  • Works as directed to achieve outcomes, even in difficult circumstances.

Collaborative working

  • Speaks of team members in positive terms, either to the team member directly or to a third party.
  • Cultivates effective stakeholder relationships.
  • Shares facts, knowledge and experience appropriately with others.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Understands what the role of the agency is, how it is organised and how it fits within the Australian Government sector.
  • Understands the role and functions of the agency, and is aware of issues that may impact on allocated work tasks.

Build organisational capability

  • Has responsibility for planning their own work goals and priorities that align with and achieve their own and team outcomes.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Maximises the benefits of change and contributes to improved service quality and efficiency.

APS 4

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Wants to do more than the minimum required, setting goals that are achievable but that challenge them to do better than before.
  • Takes actions that lead to quantifiable improvements in processes or systems.
  • Identifies barriers to completing their own work and comes up with solutions.
  • Makes decisions relating to their area of responsibility that impact on the work area or specific function.

Flexible thinking

  • Makes sense of disparate information; sees patterns and trends.
  • Identifies the implications and impacts of technology.
  • Informs their supervisor when work processes could be simplified and/or improved, sharing ideas about how this could be achieved.
  • Adjusts behaviour to suit new goals when team priorities change.
  • Knows where to find information required to complete tasks.

Self confidence

  • Sees themselves as a ‘can do’ person, and is positive about their own ability to succeed.
  • Demonstrates sound judgement, escalating issues appropriately.
  • Works productively to achieve goals, even in difficult circumstances.
  • Searches for solutions, experiments with different ways of doing things, and tries to work things out.

Collaborative working

  • Cooperates with others to achieve objectives in the broader organisation.
  • Builds rapport and maintains stakeholder relationships.
  • Seeks input and keeps their supervisor informed about work progress.
  • Builds relationships with their team and other peers to work as a supportive and co-operative colleague.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Understands the impact of the work area on strategic, political or operational outcomes for the agency.
  • Has a sound general knowledge of the role and functions of the agency and an understanding of how these relate to a specific work area.
  • Recognises how tasks contribute to achieving team goals.

Build organisational capability

  • Provides suggestions and support focused on helping people handle certain situations.
  • Values specialist expertise and creates an environment which facilitates the sharing and effective use of professional knowledge and skills.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Contributes new ideas and maximises the benefits of change, including the identification of opportunities to improve the efficiency of business processes.
  • Sets up regular communications with the team (e.g. through team meetings) and makes sure the team is kept informed of what is happening.
  • Explains the reasons behind key decisions.

APS 5

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Overcomes obstacles to achieving goals and, when things don’t go as expected, uses this as an opportunity to learn.
  • Makes decisions within defined parameters and sets new precedents based on sound subject knowledge and professional judgement.
  • Self-evaluates their own performance, benchmarking against feedback from their supervisor and relevant others.
  • Develops plans and objectives for short-term tasks of the work area and contributes to strategic planning for longer-term initiatives of the section.

Flexible thinking

  • Crystallises key points from a mass of disparate information and makes sense of complex situations.
  • Applies innovation to maximise the benefits of change and contributes to the improvement in service quality and efficiency, including the use of new technologies.
  • Remains open to new challenges, applying skills flexibly in a range of situations.
  • Is aware of the way things have been customarily done and uses this understanding to manage and pace change and to implement improvements to the way the agency operates.

Self confidence

  • Knows their own strengths, and development needs and is transparent about them when working with others.
  • Is able to absorb and deal constructively with criticism, seeking support as necessary.
  • Remains engaged and productive during challenging times.
  • Sets self and others stretching goals.

Collaborative working

  • Displays willingness to learn from others, including subordinates and peers.
  • Solicits ideas and opinions to help form specific decisions or plans.
  • Develops and maintains internal and external relationships.
  • Uses communication channels effectively and appropriately.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Thinks of new ways to support current strategies, deploying existing resources and technologies to solve current issues.
  • Understands the organisation’s strategy and the implications for various work areas.
  • Is aware of changes in the broader work environment that may impact on work objectives.
  • Understands the impact of the work area on longer-term strategic, political or operational outcomes for the agency.

Build organisational capability

  • Collaborates across teams to achieve improvements and greater economies of operation.
  • Develops and oversees the implementation of improvement and change initiatives.
  • Gathers and critically analyses information from diverse sources to explore ideas and complete tasks.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Facilitates the effectiveness of a group by obtaining and providing them with the right resource or information.
  • Recognises and acknowledges individuals when they are doing a good job and reinforces the significance or impact of what they do for the agency.
  • Applies innovation to maximise the benefits of change and contributes to the improvement in service quality and efficiency.
  • Secures needed support or development for the benefit of both individuals and the team as a whole.

APS 6

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Encourages and supports others to find ways of improving working methods so as to improve how the agency operates.
  • Takes the necessary actions to meet goals; identifies and applies measures to track and quantify achievement.
  • Makes decisions using good judgement, expertise and knowledge, under limited guidance.
  • Generates innovative solutions to problems, producing a range of options for consideration.

Flexible thinking

  • Shows innovation in finding ways of developing improvements, including the use of new technologies.
  • Comes up with new ways of explaining something complex, or seeing beyond the obvious, so that others are able to understand it.
  • Proposes and facilitates innovation and contributes to business improvement strategies and changes in workplace practices.
  • Demonstrates a flexible approach to work, displaying willingness to explore opportunities as they arise.

Self confidence

  • Feels able to succeed and is prepared to stand up and be counted.
  • Has the confidence to involve others in support of a particular goal.
  • Shows initiative and judgment in the interpretation of policy and in applying practices and procedures.
  • Evaluates the effectiveness of risk management and risk assessment activities within their area of responsibility.
  • Understands their own strengths and development needs, and seeks opportunities for personal development and to address performance shortfalls appropriately.

Collaborative working

  • Summarises progress, taking account of differing viewpoints, to clarify understanding and to establish common ground.
  • Develops and supports complex relationships with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Selects and uses communication channels appropriately and effectively.
  • Collaborates effectively within team and with other work areas as required.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Recognises opportunities that have a significant impact on the agency or that affect multiple systems and/or business processes.
  • Understands organisational strategy as it relates to team and agency goals and adapts current strategy by anticipating changes based on an insightful understanding of the agency’s operating context.
  • Understands the broader governance framework of the Australian Government sector and how it impacts on the operation of the agency.
  • Has an in-depth knowledge of the role and functions of the agency and an understanding of how these relate to a work area.

Build organisational capability

  • Builds team capacity through coaching, performance feedback; and encouraging career development.
  • Understands the longer term and contributes to ensure the sustainability of initiatives.
  • Builds corporate knowledge and expertise by guiding, coaching and mentoring others.
  • Upholds the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Gets input from others to promote the effectiveness of a team or process.
  • Acts to build team spirit to promote team effectiveness.
  • Contributes to managing change and uncertainty in the workplace.
  • Creates the conditions that enable a team to perform at its best (provides the right structure and gets the right people doing the right things).

EL 1

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Analyses on the basis of the outcomes and risks for the agency.
  • Takes responsibility for the achievements of their own and team outcomes, monitors progress and follows through to deliver quality outcomes.
  • Exercises sound judgement, making independent decisions.
  • Takes responsibility for timely delivery of individual and team outcomes.

Flexible thinking

  • Works through obstacles and is resourceful to get back on track.
  • Encourages others to be innovative, in finding ways of developing improvements, including the use of new technologies.
  • Provides a significant contribution to innovation and business improvement strategies.
  • Contributes to the development of an agile workforce by applying skills in a range of situations and coaching others to use skills flexibly.

Self confidence

  • Rises to, and relishes, a range of challenges.
  • Is prepared to actively support others who are acting consistently with the core values of the agency and the APS and challenge those who aren't.
  • Engages with risk, including the conduct of risk assessment and risk management activities for areas of responsibility.
  • Develops solutions with an orientation to the future, balancing immediate business needs with medium and long-term objectives.

Collaborative working

  • Builds good morale or co-operation within the team, including creating symbols of group identity or other actions to build cohesiveness.
  • Encourages and empowers others and promotes co-operative work practices.
  • Develops and manages a range of stakeholder relationships and seeks input from team, colleagues and other stakeholders.
  • Is well aware of relevant interest groups and networks that influence key stakeholders and uses this understanding for the benefit of the agency.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Creates new strategies for the agency by applying insights from other organisations or practices and/or theories.
  • Coordinates and undertakes detailed or sensitive projects that impact on strategic, political or operational outcomes for the agency.
  • Considers and effectively manages competing priorities and strategic directions when achieving team planning and project outcomes in line with agency goals and objectives.
  • Undertakes work activities with an awareness of their possible impact on strategic, political or operational outcomes for the agency.

Build organisational capability

  • Successfully addresses people or process alignment problems between teams with peers and senior leaders.
  • Looks to the longer term and takes action to ensure the sustainability of initiatives.
  • Maintains a continuous improvement approach to individual and team work.
  • Upholds and models the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Gives people a sense that changes are achievable and that their contribution matters.
  • Explains the rationale for changes and key priorities.
  • Implements change and manages ambiguity in the workplace.
  • Supports others to maintain focus and productivity, encouraging them to embrace emerging opportunities.
  • Manages and implements cultural change.

EL 2

General capabilities

Drive for results

  • Makes decisions, sets priorities, or sets goals on the basis of calculated inputs and outputs.
  • Commits themselves (in the face of uncertainty) to the pursuit of improved performance and the achievement of a challenging goal.
  • Identifies and leads innovative solutions and communicates the implications of decisions and actions on the agency’s business objectives.
  • Makes high level decisions and uses sound judgement about priorities, balancing short, medium and long-term goals.

Flexible thinking

  • Demonstrates a flexible approach to work, displaying willingness to meet evolving organisational needs.
  • Works through obstacles and is resourceful to get back on track.
  • Leads the way in developing improvements, including the use of new technologies.
  • Promotes openness to new information, approaches and ideas.
  • Manages resource allocation responsively to ensure achievement of team and organisational objectives.

Self confidence

  • Takes on very stretching challenges that others may back away from.
  • May be a 'lone voice' challenging the status quo, but will always be able to back up their position with evidence that the action is aimed at achieving the goals of the agency.
  • Identifies, manages and evaluates risk in all decision making and delivery of outcomes.
  • Develops, understands and promotes organisational strategy as it relates to the achievement of team, agency and government objectives.

Collaborative working

  • Responds flexibly to various stakeholder requirements and changing circumstances as they arise, varying deployment of resources within imposed constraints.
  • Develops and communicates the strategic direction and vision of the agency to stakeholders.
  • Initiates, establishes and maintains key strategic internal and external networks.
  • Demonstrates flexibility and sound judgement in use of communication channels to influence outcomes, deliver results and support organisational strategy.

Leadership capabilities

Strategic insight

  • Understands the strategic relationships with an organisation and applies and maintains an extensive understanding of the role and responsibilities of the agency.
  • Sets strategic direction, develops long-term plans and implements operational strategies aimed at achieving specific agency objectives.
  • Develops strategies that fundamentally change the way the agency operates and provides a strategic level of specialist, professional and/or technical expertise.
  • Maintains a comprehensive understanding of the agency’s impact on the wider political and community context in which it operates.

Build organisational capability

  • Builds capability in a team environment through coaching others, providing performance feedback, conflict resolution and encouraging career development.
  • Delegates tasks appropriately to facilitate employee development and build team capability.
  • Leads and manages change, analyses performance and takes responsibility for continuous improvement processes.
  • Upholds and models the APS Values, Code of Conduct and Employment Principles.

Lead people through change

  • Engages and manages stakeholders through change, resolving conflict and managing sensitivities.
  • Gets buy-in and commitment to the vision within the organisation and across government, involving a diverse range of stakeholders.
  • Inspires people to contribute to and lead change initiatives.
  • Provides leadership in implementing and promoting a climate of change and continuous improvement.
  • Takes responsibility for shaping organisational culture.