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Treasury releases annual report

Treasury releases annual administrative and support services benchmarking report

The Treasury has released its fourth report on the cost, efficiency and effectiveness of administrative and support (A&S) services across 27 public sector agencies. This responds to Government demands for stronger performance management practices in the State sector and gives greater transparency to support delivery of better public services.

Findings are based on the year that ended on 30 June 2013 and two preceding years. The report covers five functions: Human Resources (HR), Finance, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), Procurement, and Corporate and Executive Services (CES) and covers 22 core Crown departments and five Crown entities.

"The Treasury believes that the public sector should aim to reach the upper quartile result of back-office efficiency and effectiveness against comparators by 2022. This is an ambitious but realistic target," says the Treasury's Deputy Secretary, Budget & Public Services, Fiona Ross. "We encourage agencies to continue to explore how they will make further progress towards this goal. Current performance shows that progress is being made but we have some way to go before we can achieve that benchmark."

This year's report shows that A&S costs were just under $1.7 billion across the five functions measured in 2012/13, up 8.5% in real or inflation-adjusted terms compared with 2011/12.

The majority of the increase was in ICT expenditure, mainly attributable to some large agencies rolling out major ICT projects that are critical for delivering better public services to New Zealanders in the years ahead. ICT expenditure in 2012/13 was made up of 73.5% operational costs and 26.5% capital costs.

"Since the 2011/12 benchmarking exercise, ICT metrics have been refined and a more detailed breakdown of ICT expenditure introduced. Work continues to better understand ICT cost drivers so that greater transparency can be provided on high-value ICT investments", Fiona Ross said.

"Agencies are being encouraged to consider shared services options where appropriate. This agency-led change is being complemented by greater focus on the effectiveness of strategic capability, and better deployment and development of strategic talent across agencies. The Government Chief Information Officer in ICT, based at the Department of Internal Affairs, the Government Procurement Branch, based at the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and the Property Management Centre of Expertise, based at Ministry of Social Development, are examples of functional leadership areas which have been established to drive better performance across the public sector", Fiona Ross said.

Data for the Property function is not collected as part of the A&S benchmarking exercise from 2012/13. Property Management is now being managed by the Property Management Centre of Expertise (PMCoE), and is reported annually in the Crown Office Estate Report. A summary of Property findings is included in the BASS report, with detailed findings in the Crown Office Estate Report for 2012/13 which was released yesterday.
Detailed Property Management findings and data for FY 2012/13 can be found at:
The report, which this year collates data from five Crown entities and 22 core Crown departments, is available at:

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