CASA Annual Report 2003 04 Part 3: Corporate report
CASA’s objective is to achieve a high performance organisation through motivated and capable people. It therefore aims to provide an environment that supports the ongoing development and effective management of staff at all levels.
Learning and development
During 2003–04, CASA continued with its Learning and Development Strategy, which is designed to build organisational capability. Learning and development initiatives and activities were grouped around:
- High Performance Leaders and Managers
- Core and Specialist Development Programs
- Corporate development initiatives
- Individual Learning Support
- Infrastructure Development.
The CASA Team Leadership Program was successfully implemented, with a majority of CASA’s frontline managers participating during the year. The program focuses on coaching, counselling and performance management skills and is also used for succession planning purposes. There will be a greater emphasis in future years on the values and associated behaviours required of CASA staff in their dealings with others, both internally and externally.
There was a major effort to strengthen CASA’s learning and development infrastructure, with a focus on efficient and effective production and delivery. A number of technical training programs were developed using quality standardised templates and a partnership approach between technical and training specialists. Other initiatives included introduction of an Orientation CD-ROM and an upgraded Learning and Development site on CASA’s intranet with better information on activities and processes, which will also include learning resources accessible by CASA staff.
There was a national training exercise on the CASA Surveillance Procedures Manual, using inspectors to deliver the content. The exercise highlighted the value of developing a cadre of experienced inspectors able to provide face-to-face training and coaching to their peers. To this end, a coaching skills program was piloted and will be progressively implemented.
Core and specialist development programs are offered through an annual training calendar. To improve the effectiveness of learning and development activities on offer, online needs analysis questionnaires were provided to ensure scheduled programs were those identified as a high priority by CASA staff.
CASA will continue to deal with the high demand for learning and development utilising the most cost effective and appropriate delivery mechanisms. A challenge for the future will be balancing the need for CASA staff to have training in the new regulations (as part of the regulatory reform implementation) with day-to-day operational requirements.
This year there was an average of 6.48 training days per employee, which was above CASA’s target of five days and slightly above the external benchmark of six days. The 2003–04 target had been lowered from the previous year’s to bring it in line with industry and public sector norms. The results indicate that the new target is both realistic and achievable.
CASA continued work on the initiatives contained in the CASA Certified Agreement 2002–2005. Progress was made in a number of areas, including developing a human resources guide, finalising the implementation of salary classifications for Flying Operations Inspectors and advancing the development of a broadbanding methodology for CASA.
The Workplace Relations Group, which is the peak level union–staff–management consultative forum, met three times during 2003–04, providing the opportunity for consultation on significant strategic, organisational and people management issues during the year.
Following a review of CASA’s existing occupational health and safety (OH&S) policies in 2002–03, work was finalised on a number of key elements that will help achieve CASA’s OH&S commitments and targets. These were:
- an undertaking by the CEO to sign an Employer Statement of Commitment between CASA and Comcare, to manage and support OH&S issues in the workplace
- development of a draft Strategic Plan, and draft OH&S Policy and Agreement to provide CASA with a strategic approach to implementing and supporting workplace safety.
The OH&S Sub-committee, which comprises union officials, workplace delegates and senior managers, met four times during 2003–04. The role of the sub-committee is to provide strategic comment, advice and assistance on OH&S issues, and to develop programs and measures to continuously improve the health and safety of all CASA employees.
The sub-committee’s work during the year included:
- establishing a Job Safety Analysis Working Party
- revising the OH&S Policy and Agreement
- commencing a nationwide program of hazardous material audits
- supporting the establishment of an Asbestos Register.
An occupational health and safety report, in accordance with section 74 of the Occupational Health and Safety (Commonwealth Employment) Act 1991, is provided.
Recognising high performance
CASA’s people management policies and practices seek to support high performance across the organisation. Two important planks of the performance arrangements in place within CASA are:
- the Performance Communication Scheme
- CASA’s Recognition Scheme.
The Performance Communication Scheme aims to link individual contributions to organisational objectives. The Scheme is based around twice-yearly discussions between managers and staff, focusing on work goals and outcomes. A further important facet of the Scheme is the discussion between a staff member and their manager, addressing learning and development needs.
The Recognition Scheme provides an opportunity for staff and managers to nominate high performers for CASA’s Employee of the Month Award, or for an Above and Beyond Award. The Scheme is designed to reinforce the CASA values and associated behaviours, and encourages staff to see these values and behaviours as an important feature of high performance in CASA.
The Scheme also includes recognition of service, at five-year milestones, commencing at 10 years’ service.
The Scheme has been widely embraced by staff and managers and is recognised as contributing positively to morale.
During the year, a revised reporting framework was developed. Topical workforce planning issues, such as the issues related to an ageing workforce, are elevated for discussion by CASA’s senior management group.
As CASA continues to evolve through its new business model, further work will be undertaken in the area of workforce planning, with a particular emphasis on ensuring that CASA has the right skills mix within its staff for its aviation safety responsibilities.
Equity and diversity
CASA maintains its commitment to equity and diversity in its workforce and throughout the workplace. The Workplace Diversity Sub-committee is a part of CASA’s workplace relations arrangements. It provides a forum for workplace delegates, union officials and CASA management to meet to discuss and promote these issues. The sub-committee met three times in the past year.