monash_2458.pdf (318.8 kB)
The Evolution of Industrial Relations in the ATO: Managing for Performance
journal contributionposted on 2017-06-07, 00:25 authored by Anderson, Eve, Griffin, Gerard, Teicher, Julian
The industrial relations framework in the Australian Public Service (APS) has moved from highly proceduralised and collective relations to direct employer-employee relations which flexibly respond to the needs of the agency. This change has occurred as part of the adoption of the New Public Management (NPM) principles in which quasi-private sector disciplines are imported to the public sector. This paper examines the evolution of industrial relations in one area of the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), an organisation which has attempted to move from a bureaucratised administration to a responsive provider of services, in order to contribute to an assessment of the impact of NPM at the workplace level. The industrial relationship in the ATO has moved a considerable distance from a highly regulated and collective relationship towards a flexible and more individualised relationship. HRM strategies of controlling work through values, behaviours and performance are on the ascendancy, but in practice they are facing significant barriers to their effective implementation.