Progress of Action 5.3

Action 5.2: Develop an FRV Strategy.

Action objective: The development of an FRV Strategy that resonates with stakeholders and the authorising environment.

Lead agency: FRV

Year Two to Five Plan (November 2021) completion dateYear Two to Five Plan (updated May 2023) completion dateAgency reported status as at 30 June 2023
June 2022September 2022Completed

Context

This action requires FRV to develop a plan that sets out the direction for FRV for the next ten years. FRV determined that the Strategy should provide the organisation’s vision, strategic pillars and priorities and outline the strategic framework and roadmap to achieve its intended outcomes.

Progress summary

As at 30 June 2023, FRV reported this action was completed and acquitted in January 2023.

FRV publicly released the FRV Strategy in September 2022.[74]

1. FRV Strategy Development

FRV established a project plan to guide the FRV Strategy development and established a Strategy Project Reference Group to provide governance oversight. FRV undertook a suite of activities to develop the FRV Strategy, including mapping FRV strategic intent to existing organisational outcomes and mapping actions in the FRV Strategy with outcomes in FRV’s Outcomes Framework. FSIM supports this mapping activity to clarify what actions and activities contribute to FRV’s desired strategic outcomes.

FRV also undertook horizon scanning activities (both internal and external) to create a case for change and, through a series of internal and external consultations, defined FRV’s identity, role and value proposition, shaped the vision, strategic pillars and priorities and set out actions and created a roadmap to implement.

Staff and FRV’s strategic partners played a significant role in developing the FRV Strategy guided by an engagement program. Engagement activities included dedicated workshops for staff (noting 16 per cent of workshop attendees were secondees) and forum conversations (such as “Conversations in the Mess”) between senior leadership and staff to identify the strategic actions most important to staff.

In FSIM’s Annual Report 2021/22, FSIM noted anecdotal evidence that a lack of clarity about how agencies’ values apply to secondees working between both CFA and FRV could lead to risks such as, but not limited to, inconsistencies in decision-making. FSIM also noted anecdotal evidence that FRV had not effectively consulted with CFA about how FRV’s organisational values would impact FRV staff seconded to CFA.[75]

In developing the FRV Strategy, FRV addressed the lack of clarity on how values applied across the organisation, engaging with various stakeholders, including the Strategic Advisory Committee and holding focus groups with industry partners from the community, industry and local government. FRV also convened specific sessions with secondees to test the usability of the FRV Strategy and discuss what role seconded staff play in its success. FRV further interviewed its service delivery partners and the UFU.[76]

FRV utilised stakeholder engagement activities to inform the development of the FRV Strategy, provide feedback on the environmental scanning activities, review themes that emerged from internal engagement, and ask critical questions about the scale of ambition and community value of the outcomes and actions. FRV involved staff to test the usability of the draft plan and consider what current projects support the strategic direction to test the resonance of the Strategy with each FRV directorate.

2. FRV Strategy release and implementation

After completing the draft FRV Strategy, FRV further tested it with staff, sector partners and community representatives through four separate workshops. Based on the feedback, FRV’s ELT endorsed the release of the FRV Strategy.

Since its release, FRV has embedded the FRV Strategy into FY 2023-24 business planning processes to ensure initiatives undertaken by FRV contribute to strategic outcomes. FRV provided evidence that staff participated in directorate business plan workshops and were aligning their workplans with broader business plans. As of 30 June 2023, 102 districts and departments had completed FRV Strategy and values in action workshops at the ACFO/Director and Commander/Manager levels.

Moving forward, FRV has included significant initiatives under the FRV Strategy in monthly ELT meetings. FRV’s ELT is also considering how to incorporate these initiatives into current legislative reporting to maintain accountability for the following strategic outcomes:

  • Communities: FRV is a modern fire and rescue service for Victorian communities
  • People: FRV has a professional and safe workplace where everyone belongs
  • Partners: FRV is a trusted partner that supports shared outcomes for a safer Victoria.

FSIM supports the planned reporting on progress against the FRV Strategy and considers it will provide increased transparency to the public on how FRV is progressing towards its strategic outcomes, given the FRV Strategy clearly defines what success looks like against each strategic pillar. This transparency of reporting will also assist FSIM in assessing the effectiveness of the FRV Strategy in future years.

Findings

FSIM finds action 5.3 is implemented and notes that the FRV Strategy is a ten-year plan with activities to improve its community focus and shift towards a modern, trusted, and inclusive fire and rescue service. These are long-term activities and extend beyond the Year Two to Five Plan.

As the action was completed in the implementation period, FSIM has not yet completed an assessment of effectiveness against the action objective.



Footnotes

[74] Fire Rescue Victoria, 2023, Fire Rescue Victoria Strategic Plan 2022-2023, Fire Rescue Victoria, viewed 8 August 2023, https://www.frv.vic.gov.au/publications

[75] Fire Services Implementation Monitor, 2023, Fire Services Implementation Monitor Annual Report 2021/22, Victorian Government, viewed 8 August 2023, https://www.vic.gov.au/fire-services-implementation-monitor-annual-report-2021-22, pg. 97.

[76] Key stakeholder interviews were undertaken with the following stakeholders: Ambulance Victoria, Cladding Safety Victoria, CFA, ESTA, Emergency Management Victoria, EPA, Forest Fire Management Victoria, FRV Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee, IGEM, Life Saving Victoria, SES, Victoria Building Authority, Victorian Council of Social Services, Victorian Planning Authority, Victoria Police, and WorkSafe.

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