CPSU members have seen first-hand the substantial negative impacts on APS capability and capacity of more than a decade of budget cuts and staff caps and an over-reliance on the use of consultancies and other external suppliers.
While those impacts and the need to rebuild internal APS capability have been well documented in numerous independent reviews and parliamentary inquiries, there has not been adequate attention until now on the conflict of interest risks created by the creeping privatisation of the public service.
The CPSU submission to the Inquiry into the management and assurance of integrity by consulting services provided for the Australian Government outlines how:
- The management of conflicts of interest needs to account for both real and perceived risks.
- The risks of conflicts of interest have increased in recent years due to the growth in the use of consultants and the increased use of consultants to perform work that should be done by the public service.
A lack of transparency and data about the engagement and work of consultants makes managing these risks difficult; and
- What needs to be done to deal with these issues.