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Statement of Responsibility

In terms of the Public Finance Act 1989, I am responsible, as Chief Executive of the Ministry of Transport, for the preparation of the Ministry of Transport’s financial statements and statement of service performance, and the judgements made in them.

I have the responsibility of establishing and maintaining, and I have established and maintained, a system of internal control designed to provide reasonable assurance as to the integrity and reliability of financial and non-financial reporting.

In my opinion, these financial statements and statement of service performance fairly reflect the financial position and operations of the Ministry for the year ended 30 June 2010.

Martin Matthews
Chief Executive

Countersigned by:

Fiona Macmaster
Manager Finance

30 September 2010

Maintaining and developing capability

Operating as a professional services ministry

In 2009 the Ministry began implementing its Shaping our Future programme, to move the Ministry towards operating as a professional services ministry.

Shaping our Future

Shaping our Future is underpinned by six development goals to support the changes.

Development goal 1: We are clear about our position, by identifying key issues, using good policy practice to develop a view on them and are clearly communicating them.

Developing sector expertise and strategy

The Ministry has seven sector teams that are responsible for policy development, centres of knowledge, key relationship management with stakeholders, and driving much of our longer-term strategic thinking on transport issues.

Strengthened financial and economic capability

The Ministry has strengthened its internal financial and economic analysis capability by establishing a Financial and Economic Analysis Team. The team advises on options and methodology for economic and financial analysis on key policy projects. A new position of General Manager Financial and Economic Performance was established to lead this work.

Development goal 2: We are flexible at managing ourselves to focus on what matters most, by identifying our priorities, allocating resources accordingly and ensuring we are effective and efficient in our work.

Transport Managers’ Group

The Ministry has established the Transport Managers’ Group (TMG) to manage resource allocation across the whole of the Ministry — to ensure that the right skills are deployed to the most critical areas at the right time. TMG is central to the Ministry’s professional services model, and increasing our responsiveness to changing priorities.

Focus on leadership of policy projects

Policy Project Managers have been appointed to lead the Ministry’s most significant policy initiatives. Policy Project Managers are critical to delivering on the Output Plan.

Managed reduction of full-time equivalent (FTE) positions within the Ministry

The Ministry has reduced its staffing level while taking on new responsibilities such as rail policy advice. Some positions were disestablished as a result of the reorganisation and the Ministry has maintained the selective non-replacement recruitment policy approach adopted in 2008/09. The Ministry’s FTE count has reduced from 182 in June 2008 to 167 FTE in June 2010 and is on track to reach its target of 162 FTE by June 2011.

Development goal 3: We have working partnerships with our stakeholders, by establishing a mutual understanding of and respect for our roles, responsibilities and relationships within government and with transport agencies and the wider transport sector, and build an understanding of their interests.

Stakeholder engagement strategy

The Ministry developed and implemented a stakeholder engagement strategy to improve our working partnerships across the sector, so that policy development is well informed by stakeholder interest. The strategy also ensures stakeholder engagement is consistent with the professional services ministry model of operating.

Key relationship managers

The Ministry has established a number of ‘key relationship manager’ roles, which have helped the Ministry to build collaborative relationships with key stakeholders. These relationships will be used to improve the Ministry’s effectiveness and reputation as a trusted and impartial adviser.

Development goal 4: We develop and challenge our people, by establishing deliberate professional development practices, encouraging staff to take on new opportunities in areas that matter and utilising coaching to support staff to fulfil their potential.

New principles of staffing

One of the founding principles of the professional services model is flexible deployment of staff to high priority work that matches skills and expertise. More than half of the Ministry’s policy staff have been deployed to projects or activities outside of their sector teams.

Staff professional development programme

The quality of the Ministry’s advice and the effectiveness of its operations will largely be determined by the quality of its staff. The Ministry has established a structured professional development programme for managers, all advisers and business services staff. This will ensure all staff have a consistent level of skill in core competencies for the Ministry.

Development goal 5: We have business systems that support us, by making the most of our people and their time and ensuring our systems focus on the achievement of our role.

Information and knowledge management

The Ministry established an Information Group to develop a knowledge-based culture at the Ministry. Substantial work has been done to ensure easy access to, and appropriate training on, business systems to support the delivery of the Ministry’s work programme.

Establishment of Programme Management Office

A Programme Management Office (PMO) serves as the hub for designing, implementing and embedding sound project management methodologies for the delivery of policy projects and related activities. The PMO uses accredited project management tools and reporting frameworks to prioritise and deliver the Ministry’s policy programme.

Development goal 6: We have lifted our leadership and managerial performance.

Lifting leadership and managerial performance

In May 2010 the Ministry committed to undertaking a management capability assessment to identify the Ministry’s strengths and areas for improvement in this area by December 2010. This is a critical next step in lifting the Ministry’s leadership and managerial performance.

Ministry capability strategy

The Ministry is also working on the development of a capability strategy to ensure that it has the appropriate shape and skills mix to meet the current and future transport policy challenges.

Managing our budget

New Zealand continues to experience a challenging fiscal environment. We are committed to doing our best to ensure the Ministry delivers value for money, and does not make demands for additional funds during this difficult period.

Over the three years from 2008/09, the Ministry’s departmental funding will decrease by nearly $4 million. In addition, the Ministry faces cost increases arising from existing commitments in relation to staff costs (salaries), building and other expenses. Essentially we have to cut approximately 12 percent from our operational budget.

Ensuring the Ministry can allocate staff and consulting resource to highest priority work first is a major component of identifying value for money. The Ministry will continue to control costs through its recruitment practices, in addition to reducing expenditure on travel, entertainment, communications and other activities.

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