Occupational profile of workforce

Public Service employees are engaged in a wide range of jobs spread across 249 different occupations in 2021. These can be divided into ten broad occupational groups as shown in the following chart. The two largest groups are ‘Inspectors and Regulatory Officers’ and ‘Social, Health and Education Workers’, accounting for 36.9% of the Public Service workforce.

Staff numbers by occupation

Between 2020 and 2021, the Public Service workforce (FTEs) increased by 3,948 or 6.9%. This was driven by increased provision of services to support the Governments response to COVID-19 across three agencies – the Ministry for Social Development, the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment, and the Ministry of Health. These increases include:

  • around 360 case managers, 310 capability developers, 90 central processing officers, and 90 customer services officers at Social Development
  • 50 security officers at Business, Innovation and Employment
  • 105 health advisors at Health.

In addition, Customs employed 235 fixed-term assistant customs officers to give effect to the COVID-related Maritime Border Order.

Amongst the occupation groups, ‘Social, Health and Education Workers’ (up 947 or 9.4%) and ‘Information Professionals’ (up 886 or 11.8%) had the largest increases in staff numbers. Proportionally, ‘Legal, HR and Finance Professionals’ had the largest increase (up 17.3% or 455).

Public Service occupational trends

The following table shows occupation groups by Public Service department for the last six years.

Customer facing roles

Just over 40% of public servants who responded to the 2021 Te Taunaki | Public Service Census survey have customer facing roles, working directly with the public, external customers and clients, or people in their care. Of those who responded to the survey, two-thirds of customer facing workers were female.

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