Fresh hunt for government Annual Report writers is on

By Paul Hemsley and Julian Bajkowski

Prime Minister Tony Abbott may have pared back the names of his ministries in pursuit of Zen-like simplicity, but the public service’s peak professional group is determined not to let the executive arm of government stake out a monopoly on the values of plain English, clarity of thinking and transparency.

The Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA) ACT has this week kicked off the start of the annual report season with a call out for entries from Commonwealth agencies and bodies and all ACT Government agencies for its yearly competition to recognise the best and fairest tomes of record.

The award is highly regarded in industry and stakeholder groups because it puts a spotlight on those agencies that rise to the occasion of providing an easily accessible snapshot of their activities, expenditure and achievements that allow for easier and more productive interactions with government.

The IPAA has nominated the 2nd December as the cut-off date for its Annual Report Awards 2012-13, a gong that is much revered among those tasked with documenting the activities of government in a coherent and transparent manner.

Eligibility for the awards is open to agencies or government bodies “irrespective of geographic location” that submit their annual reports, with gold, silver and bronze prizes to be awarded in each category.

The IPAA ACT is also asking participating agencies to put forward volunteer assessors to assist in the process for of sifting through annual reports submitted to it, with nominations due by 12th December 2013

The awards will cover a categories for small agencies of less than 251 employees and medium-to-large agencies at more than 250 employees that arte covered by the Financial Management and Accountability Act.

Describing the awards as “prestigious”, IPAA ACT president Glenys Beauchamp said all agencies are invited to submit their reports.

“It is a wonderful opportunity for every agency, big or small, to showcase better practice implementation, delivery, good governance and key performance information and to learn from others,” Ms Beauchamp said.

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