With a Welcome to Country greeting from an Indigenous elder and a formal opening by Daryl Melham MP, the Adelaide Metropolitan Office was declared open for business in July 2012. This event marked the culmination of 18 months hard work, as nine AEC offices were consolidated into one.
In part using the AEC’s existing floor space in Adelaide’s CBD, a vibrant and contemporary workspace was created to house staff from nine divisional offices and the South Australian State Office. This is the first step in implementing a strategic vision for electoral services in South Australia over the next decade.
Against a backdrop of shifts in AEC business practices, brought about by legislative change and developments in technology to deliver secure enrolment transactions, the South Australia management team turned their attention to creating a fresh working environment.
Providing a more flexible and efficient way of delivering critical election-cycle tasks is at the forefront of Adelaide’s larger work unit (LWU). The co-located team is able to collaborate on key activities to offer improved response times and overall productivity.
Bringing people together from a dispersed network harnessed decades of electoral knowledge in a single location. This provides opportunities for staff to develop new skills, build new experiences and share information.
Centralised resources allow the creation of specialist project teams dedicated to key electoral services such as enrolment, community engagement, voting services, materials management and industrial elections.
Bringing people together from a dispersed network harnessed decades of electoral knowledge in a single location.
While larger work units have been a feature of the AEC’s organisational structure for over four decades, the Adelaide metropolitan office is the AEC’s largest amalgamation to date. Conceived with staff consultation at its core, the initial operating plan reflects the broad consensus of staff. Underpinning the project’s success is an unwavering commitment to consultation and dealing with contentious issues as they arise.
Alongside the AEC’s ambition to build a better workplace and provide better services, the project aims to meet a target of cost-neutrality. Acknowledging the bold nature of the project, a series of reviews will ensure obligations to the community, staff, and stakeholders continue to be met.
Towards the end of 2012 the first stage of the review process was conducted and a comprehensive review is scheduled for 2014. While the expected minor recalibrations in workflow practices were identified, the 2012 review offered testimony to the achievement of Adelaide metropolitan office staff in successfully implementing a fresh model for the delivery of electoral services to Australians.