PC News - May 2015
Report on Government Services 2015
This year marks the twentieth edition of the Report on Government Services — a remarkable milestone for a unique report providing comparative information on the performance of government services across Australian jurisdictions.
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The Report on Government Services was commissioned in 1993 by Heads of Government (now COAG), with the first report produced in 1995. A new terms of reference issued in 2010 emphasised the Report's dual roles of improving service delivery, efficiency and performance, and increasing accountability to governments and the public.
A Steering Committee, comprising senior representatives from the central agencies of each of the Australian, State and Territory governments, and chaired by the Chairman of the Productivity Commission, manages the Review, with the assistance of a secretariat provided by the Productivity Commission.
All services included in the Report affect the community in significant ways. Some services form an important part of the nation's social welfare system (for example, social housing and child protection services), some are provided to people with specific needs (for example, aged care and disability services), and others are typically used by each person in the community at some stage during their life (for example, education and training, health services, police services and emergency services).
Estimated government recurrent expenditure on services covered by the 2015 Report on Government ServicesData sources and caveats: see Report on Government Services 2015, figure 1.1.
Why measure comparative performance?
Comparative information on the performance of government service delivery contributes to the wellbeing of all Australians by encouraging improvements in those services. Public reports, such as the Report on Government Services, improve government accountability and create incentives for better performance, which can lead to major social and economic benefits.
Traditionally much of the effort to improve the effectiveness of government services has focused on increasing the level of resources allocated to them. Another way of improving services is finding better ways of using existing resources. Performance measurement provides a way of shifting the focus from the level of resources to the efficient and effective use of those resources.
The three main reasons for reporting comparative performance information across jurisdictions are to:
- verify high performance and identify agencies and service areas that are successful
- enable agencies to learn from peers that are delivering higher quality and/or more cost effective services
- generate additional incentives for agencies and services to improve performance.
Services covered in the 2015 Report on Government Services
Child care, education and training
- Early childhood education and care
- School education
- Vocational education and training
- Primary and community health
- Public hospitals
- Mental health management
Housing and homelessness
- Social housing
- Homelessness services
- Child care, education and training
- Police services
- Corrective services
- Aged care services
- Services for people with disability
- Child protection services
- Youth justice services
- Fire and ambulance services
Report on Government Services 2015 — selected indicators
Achievement of independent housing on exit (proportion of clients who needed assistance to obtain or maintain independent housing who obtained or maintained independent housing after support)
'Achievement of independent housing' is an indicator of governments' objective to enable clients to participate as productive and self-reliant members of society at the end of their support period.
Note: Calculated using the numerator Total number of clients who had an identified need for assistance with 'long term housing', to 'sustain tenancy or prevent tenancy failure or eviction' or to 'prevent foreclosures or for mortgage arrears', and had achieved independent housing at the end of support and the denominator Total number of clients who had an identified need for assistance with 'long term housing', to 'sustain tenancy or prevent tenancy failure or eviction' or to 'prevent foreclosures or for mortgage arrears'. A client's housing tenancy was determined at the end of their last closed support period in the reference year.
Primary and community health
Health assessment for older people — proportion of older people assessed
'Health assessment for older people' is an indicator of governments' objective to improve population health outcomes through the provision of prevention as well as early detection and treatment services.
Note: Older people are defined as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 55 years or over and non-Indigenous people aged 75 years or over. Excludes services that qualify under the DVA National Treatment Account and services provided in public hospitals and residential aged care.
Destination — Proportion of 15-24 year old school leavers fully participating in education and/or training, or employment, 2013
'Destination' is an indicator of governments' objective of ensuring that school leavers make successful transitions from school and continue to improve their skills through further post-school education, training and/or employment. It is an indicator of students' post-school transitions into education, training and employment.
Note: Fully participating includes people primarily engaged in full time formal study, people primarily engaged in full time employment, people engaged in full time formal study and full time employment, and people engaged in part time formal study and part time employment.
Data sources and caveats for these charts are available from the website for the Review of Government Service Provision www.pc.gov.au/research/recurring/report-on-government-services
Report on Government Services 2015
- Read the report released 28 January — 6 February 2015