The Ministry is committed to inclusive work practices and culture. As a member of the New Zealand public service, the Ministry bases appointments on merit, while recognising the employment aspirations of Mäori, ethnic and minority groups, women, and people with disabilities.

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Key people metrics

Over the past four years the percentage of policy staff has risen from 52% in 2009/10 to 63% in 2012/13, while our overall headcount has decreased from 173 employees in 2009/10 to 145 employees in 2012/13. This shows that although the Ministry has fewer staff, we are able to do more policy work with the staff we have.

As at 30 June 2012/13 2011/12 2010/11 2009/10
Number of employees        
Policy development 91 89 82 90
Management 20 21 22 24
Administration 34 36 56 59
Total headcount 145 146 160 173
Turnover 15% 15% 18% 14%
Women 49%  53% 58% 53%
Men 51% 47% 42% 47%
 Ethnicity Distribution        
 NZ European  72%  73% 67% 69%
 NZ Maori  5%  1% 2% 2%
 Pacific peoples  1%  3% 3% 3%
 Asian  8%  6% 7% 5%
 Other European  7%  14% 18% 18%
 Other ethnic groups  5%  3%  3% 3%
 Undeclared  2%  0%  0%  0%
Sick leave taken - average days for each employee  5 5 7 6
Age distribution (permanent staff)        
 20-29  19%  23%  19%  19%
 30-39  20%  22%  21%  20%
 40-49  31%  27%  33%  31%
 50-59  20%  16%  15%  18%
 60+  10%  12%  12%  12%


Cost-effectiveness is a measure of how well an organisation uses its inputs to achieve its desired outcomes. For policy agencies, such as the Ministry, demonstrating cost-effectiveness remains a challenge as it is difficult to establish the causal relationship between our outputs and progress towards our outcomes. Outcomes in the transport sector are frequently impacted by the actions of numerous organisations and individuals.

The Ministry is constrained in its ability to affect transport outcomes in a number of ways. First, the Ministry is only one player in a very large transport system. The Ministry is responsible for approximately $30 million of transport expenditure a year, out of total government transport expenditure of approximately $3 billion a year. Secondly, while the Ministry has an important policy advice role, it does not have service delivery levers with which it can influence transport outcomes. Finally, the Ministry does not have complete control over the work it undertakes. The choices of the government of the day rightly have a significant influence on our annual work programme.

For the Ministry, the question that we must be able to answer is, ‘Are we doing the best job that we can with the resources available to us?’ To answer this question, the Ministry focuses on:

  • input management

  • quality management

  • work programme management

  • outcomes management

Input management

Staff time, along with their skills, experience and knowledge, is the Ministry’s main resource. We need our staff to value their time and get the most from every hour. To support this approach, we apply project management disciplines to our policy projects. We establish project timeframes and identify milestones that we can manage projects against to ensure projects do not consume more resource than is needed.

Quality management

We manage the quality of our work through our quality of policy advice standards. Each year we have a sample of our policy advice papers independently audited by the NZIER. This audit not only provides us with an independent view on the quality of our advice and areas that we could focus on for improvement, it also enables us to see how the quality of our advice compares with other government agencies. We also carry out an annual self assessment of our quality to further establish a culture of delivering excellent advice.

In addition to these audits, we assess the quality of our advice using the following measures:

  • 100% of regulatory impact statements are assessed as ‘meets’ or ‘partially meets’ the required standards

  • 75% of policy advice briefings are accepted first time by the Minister (a new measure for 2012/13)

Work programme management

Our annual output plan is a statement of the results that the Minister wants from the Ministry. We manage the Ministry as a single resource to deliver on the whole output plan programme, and we record the actual percentage delivered in our annual reports.

Delivering on the individual projects in the output plan enables the Ministry to achieve its intended impacts and, through them, make our contribution to the intermediate and long-term outcomes. Our intervention logic sets out the links between our outputs, impacts, intermediate and long-term outcomes.

Outcomes management

The Ministry monitors the progress that the whole of the transport sector is making towards the identified outcomes. While our impacts contribute to this, it is not always clear whether the Ministry’s contribution can be singled out from other factors and, even if it could, it is likely to be too costly to undertake. So we use our outcome indicators to focus on the overall progress being made, and use a range of mechanisms to identify opportunities for us to make further contributions where needed.

Key Ministry performance management measures

The key performance management measures that the Ministry established for 2012/13 are set out in the table below, along with our 2011/12 performance against those measures, where available.

Key Ministry performance management measures 2012/13
Input management 2012/13 result 2011/12 result
75% of policy projects managed within timeframes and allocated resources 75% Data not available for 2011/12
75% of policy project milestones delivered each quarter 63% Data not available for 2011/12
30% of staff time allocated to the Minister’s priority projects   27% 24%
 Quality management 
New Zealand Institute of Economic Research’s audit of policy advice papers assesses average score for papers as 7.5 or better Mean score of 7.3 Mean score of 7.3 (up from 6.9 in 2011)
100% of regulatory impact statements are assessed as ‘meets’ or ‘partially meets’ the required standards   100% 100% (three met, three partially met)
75% of policy advice briefings are accepted first time by the Minister
(a new measure for 2012/13)  
85% Data not available for 2011/12
 Work programme management    
95% or more of output plan delivered as agreed with the Minister  96% 90% of output plan delivered as agreed with the Minister
95% or more of Ministry impacts achieved through delivering
underpinning projects  
 100% Data not available for 2011/12
 Outcomes management    
Results of transport sector progress on intermediate and long-term outcomes published at least annually Published annually in the Ministry of Transport annual report Published annually in the Ministry of Transport
annual report 
Ministry reviews outcome indicators that show less progress is being made and considers whether further Ministry action is needed  Not achieved  Scheduled for review in December 2012 

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