Employment decisions

This is an overview of employment decisions that may be made, reviewed or appealed. Full details are contained in Enterprise Agreements and relevant legislation.

Changes to Administrative Arrangements

Future changes to the structure and functions of the ACT Public Service may take place by the Government issuing new Administrative Arrangements. If this occurs, your position may be moved into a new Directorate or Agency under the Public Sector Management Act 1994. This cannot be reviewed or appealed.

Unattached officers

Staff may agree to be unattached from their nominal role, with the business unit required to find another role for that officer, however if no role is found the officer may be made excess.

Excess officers

The ACT Government has a policy of no involuntary redundancies, see Redeployment and redundancy Policy Statement 2014. This means that if you are permanent, you may be made excess but cannot be terminated from ACT Government unless you accept a voluntary redundancy.

An excess officer is an officer who has been notified in writing by the head of service that he or she is excess to an ACTPS Directorate's requirements because the:

ACTPS officers who are excess (either potentially or actually) and who apply for transfer to any advertised permanent vacancy have absolute preference and must be considered in isolation from, and not in competition with, applicants who are not excess.

The consideration of the excess officer(s) should be a genuine assessment of whether the officer is suitable for the vacancy, or may be suitable within a reasonable time including with reasonable training (generally three to six months), and should be conducted in a manner demonstrably similar to that which would apply to other officers if no excess officer had applied.

Where more than one excess officer applies, a merit selection process should first be conducted between the excess officers. Officers who are potentially or actually excess and who apply for transfer should clearly identify their excess status in their application to ensure they are considered in isolation.

Underperformance or misconduct

Underperformance and misconduct arrangements have several stages as outlined in Enterprise Agreements.

Appeals and Internal reviews

Selection principles

All selection processes (including promotion decisions) must be based on a proper assessment of merit.



A promotion occurs when an officer is selected and promoted to a higher classification than the classification they hold before the promotion. Temporary transfer occurs where an officer temporarily performs the duties of a higher office for a defined period (i.e. a higher classification than they currently hold).

Generally, a promotion (made under section 83 of the PSM Act) or temporary transfer (made under section 101 of the PSM Act) is subject to appeal, where:

the promotion/temporary transfer is to any classification with a maximum salary that is less than the minimum salary of a classification equivalent to a Senior Officer Grade C

Any suitably qualified officer may also appeal a promotion if the vacancy that has been filled was not advertised.

The Appeal Panel will assess whether the officer making the appeal would be more efficient in performing the duties of the position than the officer promoted or selected for temporary transfer to a higher office.

After reviewing an application about promotion or temporary transfer to a higher officer or role affecting the appellant, the Appeal Panel will either confirm the decision or make recommendations to the head of service to substitute another decision.

The appeal mechanism for promotion and temporary transfer to higher office decisions is set out in ACTPS Enterprise Agreements. Appeals must be lodged with the Convenor of Appeal Panels within 14 days of notification of the promotion in the Gazette. An application for an appeal must be sent to:

The Convenor of Appeal Panels
Public Sector Workplace Relations
Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development

Scan and email: ACTPS_Appeals@act.gov.au.

Internal Review

An employee may seek an internal review of the management actions or decisions that affect them in relation to their employment. There are some actions/decisions that are excluded from this right of review (e.g. decisions on classifications of an office, promotions and transfers). However, as employees are entitled to a fair and unbiased assessment of their job application, an employee may seek an internal review of the process leading to decisions:

ACTPS Enterprise Agreements establish procedures for employees to seek an internal review of management actions that affect them. Staff should seek advice from their Directorate HR area about how to lodge a request for an internal review.