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Effective and efficient delivery of our services - Te whakahaere tika i ā mātou ratonga

This section reports on how the Ministry continuously improved its service delivery and provided value for money. The efficient and effective delivery of the Ministry’s services contributes to the Government’s policy objective of lifting the performance of the public sector.

Managing in a changeable operating environment

The Ministry’s ability to identify and manage risks affects our ability to achieve our goals. We mitigate risks effectively through having strong governance structures for all our activities and through having an effective risk management policy, including business continuity plans.

The Ministry’s Leadership Team meets weekly to discuss progress on major projects. We regularly assess our organisational performance, our financial position and our compliance with statutory and internal policy requirements, and refine our management strategies in response.

To meet the challenges across our business we are reviewing and updating our operating model.

We are refining our portfolio management approach so that our agreed priorities become the primary unit of analysis and engagement. We want to be able to:

  • understand opportunity costs
  • make trade-offs transparently
  • balance short term and long term investments
  • take a ‘managed risk’ approach so that we can encourage innovation
  • make recommendations on disinvesting in low return investments

We know that the sector needs a strong evidential base to support our future strategy and operating model and we are making more resources available for research and evaluation. 

Te Arataki

In 2014/15 the Ministry refreshed its approach to supporting Iwi/Māori cultural aspirations. Te Arataki is the Ministry’s strategy to support Iwi/Māori cultural aspirations as set out in the Cultural Sector Strategic Framework 2014-18. With an intergenerational focus, medium-term progress should see Iwi/Māori with strengthened capacity to advance Iwi/Māori cultural aspirations for the benefit of Iwi/Māori and all New Zealanders.

The Ministry provided the following products, advice and services to the public and of particular interest to Iwi/Māori:

  • Maintained and supported the production, funding, and provision of premium online and published content on history and te reo Māori (the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, Te Ara – The Encyclopedia of New Zealand, 28th Māori Battalion, net websites); developed the Treaty Settlement Stories project; developed the Waitangi Signings resource; and scoped the Treaty Women Signatories project.
  • Managed the provision of 27 Treaty Settlement protocols and supported partnership engagements with 72 iwi and 36 external stakeholders, and co-sponsored the preliminary scoping of a review of the Protected Objects Act, to ensure discharge of our kaitiakitanga, manaakitanga and matauranga management and stewardship responsibilities.
  • Facilitated engagement with 18 cultural sector agencies and 12 government-funded agencies to support government commemoration programmes and significant and sector-led events including: the Waitangi National Trust and Waitangi Day commemoration committee, the Waitangi 175 inter-government commemoration committee, WW100, Te Matatini 2015 kapa haka festival and research project, the 150th Waikato-Wars commemoration, the Pukeahu National War Memorial Park and Great War Exhibition blessings, Te Papa Repatriation programme, and the Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Landmarks project.

The Ministry delivers support services efficiently

The Ministry is required to meet efficiency savings targets across the Ministry’s departmental appropriations. The 2014 Benchmarking Administrative and Support Services (BASS) benchmarked results confirm that the Ministry’s support functions are efficient and also effective for an organisation of this size.

The Ministry is already working with agencies to identify opportunities for future efficiency savings, using tools such as BASS, and we are investigating the possibility of shared IT services with other agencies in the sector.

Our people

The Ministry has a capable workforce which is committed to advancing the cultural sector.  We are characterised by a “can do”, innovative, agile and collaborative culture and an ability to get things done.

We periodically survey staff engagement and identify actions to improve engagement levels. The current focus is on developing a better sense of common purpose, enabling people to develop their careers and reviewing our approach to performance management.  This focus has derived from the work that has been done on our workforce strategy.

The Ministry is committed to the principle and practice of equal employment opportunities in the recruitment, employment, training and promotion of staff, and to the identification and elimination of barriers that cause or perpetuate inequality in employment opportunities. The Ministry is made up of a diverse range of staff including:

•           8% Maori

•           5% Asian descent

•           60% Women.

Capability and engagement measures

The following measures were used to monitor trends in the Ministry’s organisational capability and health:

What we want to do



Sustain high levels of engagement for a responsive, productive and focussed workforce

Employee engagement is at best practice levels based on engagement survey results (IBM) – ratio of at least 30% engaged to 10% disengaged

2013: 20% engaged to 14% disengaged

2015: 21% engaged to 16% disengaged


At least 90% of new permanent staff still in the same role after 12 months

2012: 96.8%

2013: 92%

2014: 80%

2015: 78%

Average length of service for permanent staff is within a range of 4-6 years


Unplanned staff turnover is within a range of 10-15%


2012: 6.0 years

2013: 4.96 years

2014: 5.6 years

2015: 5.6 years

2012: 9%

2013: 15.9%

2014: 7.38%

2015: 21.7%


Improve the quality of policy advice and content we produce

Improvement in rating of quality of policy advice by independent assessment

2012: Average rating from NZIER 7.0 out of 10

2013: Average rating from NZIER 7.2 out of 10

2014: Average rating from NZIER 7.0 out of 10

2015: Average rating from NZIER 7.6 out of 10

Improve efficiency, reliability and staff use of information systems


Percentage of time systems are available in normal business hours

2012: 98.7%

2013: 99.9%

2014: 99.9%

2015: 99.2%

This result assumes that there are 2,142 supported hours in a year. The percentage of time the network is functioning has remained reasonably static over the past four years.



Improving staff satisfaction with information systems

2012: 83% of respondents were satisfied that the technology they use at work meets their business needs. 83% of respondents were satisfied with the quality of service provided by the ICT service desk.


2013: 67% of respondents were satisfied that the technology they use at work meets their business needs. 91% of respondents were satisfied with the quality of service provided by the ICT service desk.


2014: 90% of respondents were satisfied that the technology they use at work meets their business needs. 88% of respondents were satisfied with the quality of service provided by the ICT service desk.


2015: 95.6% of the respondents were satisfied that their requests to the Service Desk are responded to, and resolved in a timely manner. 86.7% of respondents were satisfied that the technology they use at work meets their business needs.


Updated on 3rd December 2015