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Australia’s largest employer to make mass job cuts

Australia’s largest employer to make mass job cuts

July 8, 2024

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New South Wales government, the country’s largest workplace with a headcount of 450,000, is commencing a series of mass job cuts that will impact thousands, according to

Greg Wells, the CEO of Service NSW, a government department responsible for everything from car registration and births, deaths and marriages to natural disaster emergency assistance, told staff this week that jobs across most divisions would be slashed by up to 60%. This is according to an employee who wished to remain anonymous speaking to The government has publicly stated it is aiming to cut 25% of Service NSW staff amid a budgetary crisis, an enormous inherited debt and long-term economic uncertainty.

Ahead of the 2023 state election, NSW Premier Chris Minns pledged to shake up the public service by guillotining 15% of senior executives and imposing a two year pay freeze on those remaining.

In June 2024, the NSW government announced its intention to set up a new unit within the Premier’s Department to help reduce the use of consultants by redirecting agencies to in-house specialist resources where they are available and building in-house capabilities for services with the highest demand. This new group will be responsible for identifying skills shortages and workforce gaps and undertaking long-term planning to deliver essential services across the state.

According to the NSW government website, analysis by the NSW Auditor-General from their last five years in office, the previous Liberal-National Government had issued more than 10,000 contracts to consultants and spent more than AUD1 billion (USD 674,765,000) on external consultants with inadequate procurement and management policies in place.

The Daily Mail has reported that staff are upset with the announcement by Service NSW, with some saying they are struggling to cope with the workload. “How are we supposed to do our job properly when we hang by a thread?” one staff member said.

The four areas affected by the job cuts are customer support, service delivery, partnerships and projects, and cyber security. Around 125 full-time roles are set to go; however, the job cuts will mostly affect contractors, temporary workers, and other staff. The department will instead boost its online services to continue to support customers.