The federal Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has responded to recommendations made in the Gershon report by revealing plans to replace as many as 60 IT contractors with permanent staff.
Sir Peter Gershon and Lindsay Tanner (Credit: Brian Hartigan)
In a statement today, DIAC said that it was going on a "recruitment drive in a bid to secure more than 60 permanent information technology specialists to rebalance its workforce with a greater proportion of staff, rather than relying on contractors".
The department's IT function is led by chief information officer Bob Correll. DIAC employs a sizable number of contractors, particularly with relation to its $521 million Systems for People overhaul. Some of the new permanent staff will be assigned to the Systems for People effort, DIAC said. The department currently employs about 1,000 IT staff.
The axing of contractors in favour of internal IT staff was one of the seven critical areas that Peter Gershon identified in his report to the Federal Government released in October last year.
According to the Gershon Report, in 2007 there were 10,000 IT workers employed by agencies under the Financial Management and Accounting Act; of which 30 per cent were contractors. When the Federal Government accepted the findings of the Gershon report, it said it wanted to halve this number of contractors by 2011.
DIAC is the first government department known to have started to implement Gershon's recommendations, having said that the new program would help to build skills within the organisation, creating long-term efficiencies.
"Investing in ongoing positions will help DIAC manage its business-as-usual IT operation more efficiently; it is better management of our skills base and ensures our operations are sustainable — all consistent with key tenets of [the Gershon] review," DIAC said in the statement.
DIAC permanent vacancies range from IT help-desk support officers on packages of $53,000 a year through to SAP and senior Java technical specialists, who could pick up more than $140,000. Applications close 18 January.