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Our diverse workforce

Our workforce profile

Our diverse workforce is the largest in the Queensland Government. Our profile includes school and TAFE teachers, and specialist staff, as well as professionals engaged in the education and training sectors.

As at 30 June 2009, the department had a combined workforce of 82 263 people, which equates to 64 782 full-time equivalent staff across the state in various full- and part-time roles. The department's workforce - based on Minimum Obligatory Human Resource Information (MOHRI) point in time data - comprises:

  • 54 092 school-based staff
  • 6828 staff in TAFE institutes
  • 945 education and 242 training staff located at regional and district offices
  • 1403 central office staff
  • 149 Early Childhood Education and Care staff located in regional and central offices
  • 1105 shared services provider staff, who supply human resources, and financial and technical support services to all staff
  • 18 media and public relations staff.

click on the graph to enlarge Click on the graph to enlarge

Figure 39: The department's workforce composition 2008-09

  • The department's workforce composition 2008-09

Source: Department of Education and Training

Figure 40: Location of the department's workforce 2008-09

  • Location of the department's workforce 2008-09

Source: Department of Education and Training


The average age of departmental employees is 44 years, compared with 43 years across the Queensland public sector (see Figure 41). Queensland's average state school teaching age is 42 years.

Figure 41: The department's age profile 2008-09

  • The department's age profile 2008-09

Source: Department of Education and Training

During 2008-09, 5.1 per cent of the tenured workforce left the department, mostly due to resignation and retirement.

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Reducing absenteeism

The department continues to monitor and implement strategies to reduce the rate of employees' unplanned absences. The department's overall absenteeism rate for 2008-09 was 3.71 per cent.

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Figure 42: Short-term absenteeism rate for Queensland state school teachers during 2008-09

  • Short-term absenteeism rate for Queensland state school teachers during 2008-09

Source: Department of Education and Training

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Voluntary early retirement

In 2008-09, 15 voluntary early retirement and retrenchment packages were accepted by departmental and Corporate and Professional Services staff, totalling $734 972.62, excluding accrued leave payments.

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Benefits of diversity

The Department of Education and Training recognises the importance of educating staff about the benefits of workforce diversity, and reinforcing appropriate workforce behaviour and standards. Actions under the department's Workforce diversity and equity framework for action 2006-2008 (new window) Adobe PDF document were reviewed in early 2009.

An analysis of the review's outcomes will inform the department's future strategic direction for workforce diversity, including strategies to address issues for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, people with disabilities, people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and women in management.

Departmental staff are encouraged to demonstrate positive behaviours that contribute to a supportive, inclusive and participative organisation.

Table 17: Equity groups

Target group Targets (%) Actual (%) as at 30 June 2009
Women in non-teaching senior management positions (SES/SO) 54 (a) 45.1
Women in non-teaching management positions (A07 level and above) 61 (a) 55.3
Women in teaching positions (Band 5 and above) 58 (a) 59.7
Women in teaching positions (Bands 8-11) 41 (a) 40.8
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples 2.4 (b) 2.0
People from non-English speaking backgrounds 13.5 (c) 9.8
People with a disability No target set 6.2

Source: Department of Education and Training

Notes:

  1. 2008 agency target: new performance indicators for 2009 onwards are being negotiated.
  2. Whole-of-government target: the percentage of all employees at all salary levels in the sector by the end of 2010.
  3. Whole-of-government target: the percentage of employees at each salary level by the end of 2010.

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Raising cross-cultural awareness

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment framework for action 2007-2010 outlines actions and strategies to improve the employment, retention and career development of Indigenous people within the department.

The framework is an important component of the department's workforce diversity and equity program.

In 2008-09, work continued to create and operate 10 Indigenous employee regional networks across the state. These networks provide a forum to increase communication within the regions and more easily identify solutions to issues that affect Indigenous employees.

In 2008-09, leadership development was also a key component of the department's workforce diversity and equity strategy. Ten Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff members participated in the department's Leadership Development Program: Leading from any chair.

The department sponsored four staff members to participate in the Wal-Meta Leadership program. Additionally, the department undertook work to support Indigenous employment options. The department partnered with other state government agencies to implement changes to government policy and programs in Cape York Welfare Reform communities.

The seven employees who participated in the Commonwealth Government's Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) program in Cape York Welfare Reform community schools continue to provide valued support in those schools.

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Supporting multicultural diversity

In 2009, the department again celebrated Harmony Day, which coincides with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.Brisbane marked the day with a Dance Your Way Through Harmony Day event featuring cultural dancers from Sunnybank State High School.

More than 35 schools and TAFE institutes held activities to celebrate the department's success as a culturally diverse organisation, and recommit to harmony and mutual respect.

The department also continued to coordinate the Queensland Government's Migrant Work Experience Program. The program gives newly arrived migrants from a non-English speaking background four weeks of office skills training at TAFE, followed by six weeks in an entry-level administrative position with a sponsoring Queensland Government agency.

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Strengthening our commitment to people with a disability

The department is committed to ensuring employment equity for all staff, including people with a disability. Throughout 2008-09 the department undertook key strategies to achieve this, including:

  • extending the successful Wide Bay Region Pilot for People with Significant Disabilities program to 2011. The six employees participating in this program are willing to learn, enthusiastic about the work environment and role models for students with disabilities within schools
  • forming pilot Workforce Diversity staff networksin Wide Bay and Brisbane to provide a forum to identify and create local solutions to issues that affect staff with a disability. The networks also help communicate workforce disability issues and achievements to the Workforce Disability Reference Group and Workforce Diversity Council.

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Women in our workforce

The department supports the Queensland Government's Women in the Smart State 2003-2008: Directions Statement External Link, which identifies key priorities such as health; work, family and lifestyle balance; economic security; safety; and women's involvement in leadership, decision making and community building.

More than 76 per cent of the department's workforce is female. The rich diversity of women make valuable and significant contributions to leadership roles, the education of young people and adults, and the support of schools and TAFE institutes by delivering specialist and corporate services.

As at 30 June 2009, women filled 45.1 per cent of senior and executive management positions in the department (see Table 17: Equity groups).

The department is committed to providing women with equal employment and career development, and helping them achieve work-life balance through flexible work arrangements. Some key actions to support our female employees include:

  • presenting the annual Her Stories event as the peak celebration of the department's International Women's Day celebrations
  • reviewing the Pregnancy in the Workplace policy to ensure that all female employees experiencing medical or occupational health and safety issues are supported in the workplace.

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