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The Treasury Statement of Intent 2012-17

Our organisational health and capability

To be a world class Treasury working towards higher living standards for New Zealanders requires an ongoing programme to develop the capability of our staff and systems.

We have three objectives that reinforce each other:

  • Our leadership role models and drives our values in order to lift our performance.
  • We are an adaptable and productive workforce.
  • We are a well-managed public sector organisation focused on continuous improvement.

Impact: Our leadership role models and drives our values in order to lift our performance

The Treasury is seeking to lift its performance by changing the Treasury's culture - how we go about our business - so that the way all Treasury people work is representative of and aligned to the Treasury values: bold and innovative; collaborative and challenging; adaptable and focused; passionate and ambitious. The Treasury can only live by its values if its leaders champion and role model those values, and if they consistently use leadership practices that foster this culture.

Alongside our internal leadership, we are also seeking to improve the Treasury's external leadership role. We want to achieve greater depth and breadth of two-way engagement with external stakeholders at all levels across the Treasury, with the aim of lifting the quality of our advice and being more influential.

Our focus is helping our leaders adopt and develop their competence in specific leadership skills, styles and practice; and improving engagement with external stakeholders at all levels across the Treasury. Given recent changes to our senior leadership team, a particular focus in the short term is establishing a collaborative and challenging executive leadership team dynamic.

We will demonstrate our progress by:

  • The Treasury’s assessment of leadership demonstrates a lift in constructive leadership styles.
  • The Treasury stakeholder survey reflects a view that the Treasury is leading, and raising the quality of, critical policy debates.

Impact: We are an adaptable and productive workforce

We need a workforce that can adapt quickly and act to meet changing demands within the limited financial resources available to us. We need to be able to prioritise work swiftly and reallocate resources when required.

We must all be clear about our contribution to our outcomes, deepen our capability to influence and improve our ability to assist other agencies to align their work with the Government's economic agenda through effective, ongoing, two-way working relationships. Our people will be enthusiastic and demonstrate commitment to achieving our outcomes.

Our focus will be on embedding a number of significant initiatives that aim to lift the productivity of our people and our ability to have an impact on our outcomes, including improving the quality of our policy advice, improving our ability to operate as the State sector's corporate headquarters finance function, improving our cross-Treasury prioritisation and delivering on our Workforce and Diversity Strategies.

We expect these initiatives to lead to greater levels of staff productivity.

We will demonstrate our progress by:

  • Our employee engagement survey results are in the top quartile of the public sector.
  • The effectiveness and efficiency of our policy advice improve over time[4].

As part of the implementation of our Workforce Strategy we are developing measures to demonstrate progress against this strategy. Once these have been finalised we will report against them.

Impact: We are an exemplar of a well-managed State sector organisation focused on continuous improvement

As a Central Agency, the Treasury has a role in lifting the performance of the State sector. Our objective is to be recognised by our peers and through independent review as an example of how a well-managed organisation operates. We will continue making improvements to our systems and processes to allow maximum resources to go to the priorities identified in the Statement of Intent.

In March 2012 the corporate service functions (finance, information technology [IT], information management [IM] and HR) of Central Agencies were integrated into the Central Agencies Shared Services unit (CASS) sitting in the Treasury. The objectives of this are to minimise risk through building greater resilience and strengthening capability; develop better services, including both improving the capability to innovate, build job satisfaction and career development; and lead by example by building strong corporate services which will deliver services that exceed the sum of their parts. It will take time for the changes to bed in and for these gains to be achieved.

Our focus is to embed CASS, manage the risks associated with the change to a shared service model and start to realise the benefits. We will continue to improve our management information, planning and reporting systems to enable the Treasury to measure its impact and to support decisions about efficiency and effectiveness. The Treasury will also be strengthening its management and governance by introducing and embedding more systematic approaches to project, process and risk management.

We will demonstrate our progress by:

  • PIF: The majority of the organisational management ratings move to "strong" at the next PIF assessment of the Treasury.
  • Departmental Internal Control Environment (DICE): The rating is 4.5 or higher.
  • BASS: Costs of supplying administrative and support services as a proportion of the Treasury’s running costs decrease.
  • BASS: The average of the Treasury’s management practices indicators improves.

As the Treasury has recently moved to a shared support services arrangement for finance, IT, IM and HR (called CASS) we will need to revise our BASS targets once this new arrangement has had time to bed in. In the interim we have established the following CASS-related measures:

  • an 8% reduction in the overall running costs of CASS by the end of 2013/14, and
  • CASS will meet the agreed performance metrics outlined in the CASS service catalogue.


  • [4]A set of effectiveness and efficiency measures is being developed through the Policy Unit Measurement Pilot Project with the intention that these will eventually be used across the New Zealand Public Service. The Treasury is participating in this pilot.
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