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Portable Long Service Authority Corporate Plan 2019-20

The Portable Long Service Authority's Corporate Plan 2019-20 outlines the organisation's key objectives, challenges and risks and performance measures for its first year of operations.


Date:
August 2019

Overview

Delivering a quality Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme to protect the benefits of those who are entitled to them.

Background to the Authority

The Portable Long Service Benefits Authority is an independent statutory body established to administer the Long Service Benefits Portability Act 2018 (Vic) (the Act). The Act, together with the Long Service Benefits Portability Regulations 2019 (Vic) (Regulations) provides a scheme for the portability of long service benefits to eligible workers in the contract cleaning, security and community services sector.

The new scheme was created in response to the Victorian Parliament’s Economic, Education, Jobs and Skills Committee inquiry into portability of long service leave entitlements. This will enable eligible workers in the community services, contract cleaning and security industries to accrue long service benefits based on length of time employed in their respective industry as opposed to length of time employed by one employer.

The Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme is intended to bring fairness and equity to these industry workplaces in Victoria.

Vision

Delivering a quality Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme to protect the benefits of those who are entitled to them.

Purpose

Administering an effective Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme in the sectors we serve by prudent, sustainable investment and supporting all stakeholders, including employers and workers alike, as well as educate and enforce every stakeholder’s role and interest in the scheme.

Values

The Authority has adopted the Victorian Public Sector values that underpin the behaviours that the government and community rightly expect of the staff of the Authority. Expressed below is what those core values mean to the Authority. Acting consistently with these values strengthens the Authority’s capacity to operate effectively and achieve our objectives.

PLSA icon responsiveness
Responsiveness We are approachable and provide timely, useful and accurate information.
PLSA icon integrity
Integrity We have unbiased and honest interactions.
PLSA icon impartiality
Impartiality We are fair and consistent in our application of the law.
PLSA icon accountability
Accountability We fulfil our objectives in a clear, transparent and responsible manner.
PLSA icon respect
Respect We respect our stakeholders, each other and ourselves.
PLSA icon leadership
Leadership We seek to have a positive influence and to empower others.
PLSA icon human rights
Human rights We administer the law and deliver decisions, advice and policy that respect and support everyone’s human rights.

Objectives

The Authority’s primary objectives are to:

  • Fulfil our legislative obligations by effectively administering and supporting compliance with the Long Service Portability Act 2018 (Vic).
  • Implement effective responsible budget and investment strategies which grow levy funds and deliver long-term sustainability.
  • Be clear, consistent, transparent and responsive in our stakeholder communications which encourages registration, levy payments and ensures that eligible workers and employers are aware of their rights and obligations.
  • Maintain a healthy and safe workplace with a culture that encourages engaged, resilient and solution-focused staff.
  • Implement an innovative, secure, resilient and integrated information technology environment that supports effective operations now and in the future.
  • Protect the long-term interests of the Authority through effective regulation using governance, strategic risk management and clear policies and procedures.

Operating environment

Over of the operating environment and achievements of the Portable Long Service Authority.

Under the Long Service Portability Act 2018 (Vic) (the Act), the Authority administers and operates the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme for employers and eligible workers in Victoria’s community services, contract cleaning and security industries.

From 1 July 2019, businesses employing workers in these industries must register with the Authority on our online registration system. The Authority will liaise with employers to support them to understand their obligations under the Act and how the levy that employers must pay for their eligible workers will be applied. Each quarter, commencing in October 2019, registered businesses will be required to lodge a quarterly return to the Authority that details relevant worker information and pay a levy which will be invested by the Authority with the objective of meeting future long service payments to eligible workers.

The Scheme allows eligible workers to accrue long service leave, even if they change employers but remain in the same industry. Registered workers will be able to access the Authority’s online system and check their balances or update details at any time. When workers become entitled, usually after at least 7 years of service, they can apply for payment of their long service benefit.

The Authority has a Governing Board that reports to the Minister for Industrial Relations.

In accordance with the Act, the Governing Board will:

  • set the levy to be paid by employers and contract workers
  • be responsible for the governance, strategic planning and risk management of the Authority
  • advise the Minister on agreements for corresponding schemes across Australia 
  • perform functions and exercise the powers of the Authority that it deems appropriate

The Chief Executive Officer / Registrar, who is a member of the Governing Board, is responsible for the administration of the day-to-day management of the affairs of the Authority.

An Audit and Risk Committee will also provide support and assurance, as well as advice to the Governing Board.

Achievements

Key achievements of the Authority since the commencement of operations include the setting of the employer levy by the Governing Board for each of the community services, contract cleaning and security industries.

The Authority has also put in place effective systems and processes to support its core operations with key policies and procedures to enable good governance and strong controls. The Authority is communicating effectively with its stakeholders to ensure that information is available for those affected by the new Scheme.

The Victorian Government chose Bendigo as the location of the Authority as part of its commitment to invest in regional Victoria. The Authority has supported this initiative and grown jobs in the region by recruiting from the talented pool of staff and using suppliers that are available from the local area where possible.

The Authority now has a dedicated and talented workforce comprising of well-trained customer service operators based in our Bendigo offices, each of whom is eager to play their part in supporting this important initiative.


External environment, challenges and risks

An overview of the Portable Long Service Authority's external environment, challenges and risks.

External environment

The Act addresses a long-identified gap in the industrial relations landscape relating to long service. Previously, many workers who remain employed in the covered industries have been unable to meet the requirements to accrue long service leave due to the contractual nature of employment in those sectors.

We have an important role in supporting our stakeholders to understand to whom the levy applies, how it is administered and how the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme operates.

The Authority also has compliance powers, and it will adjust its regulatory posture to strike a balance between the use of these compliance powers in the face of clear wrongdoing and educating stakeholders to understand how to comply with their obligations under the Act.

Key challenges and risks

Operations – As a start-up Authority, there was significant work to establish operations, train staff and understand the needs of stakeholders. Supported by Industrial Relations Victoria within the Department of Premier and Cabinet, much of the foundational work was already in place enabling the Authority to commence full operations on 1 July 2019.

The Authority will continue to work to consolidate processes and procedures, and refine them where necessary over time, to ensure efficient and effective service delivery to eligible workers and employers who are required to be registered in order to comply with the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme.

Investment

The Authority is required to invest employer contributions prudently to ensure that there are sufficient assets to meet long service leave needs of workers. Funds must be invested wisely to withstand volatile financial market conditions.

The Authority sets and reviews regularly its Investment Strategy Policy to take into account changes in market conditions.
The appointed actuary will provide scrutiny over the adequacy of the funds held by the Authority.

Contribution levy payments

For the Scheme to remain sustainable over the long-term, and to comply with the Act, eligible employers must register and pay the required contribution levy from 1 July 2019.

During the first year of operations, the Authority will focus heavily on education and communication with affected employers and workers to promote awareness of the Scheme and the obligations imposed by it. The Authority will also have a fair and equitable compliance framework to address and prosecute compliance breaches identified by the Authority.

Information technology

It is of paramount importance that the storing and use of private information collected from employers and workers is kept secure.

The Authority oversees and rigorously monitors its partnerships with service providers who support and maintain our critical
IT systems and infrastructure. Regular testing, monitoring and backups of information are performed within the internal control framework that has been established.

The Authority is working towards a Risk Management approach which aims to achieve best practice in strategic risk management.


Performance Measures

An overview of the way the Portable Long Service Authority's performance will be measured.

We recognise that all eligible employers and workers have obligations under the Act from 1 July 2019. Our goal is to ensure that all of those who must register do register with the Authority.

Key performance measures 2019-20 are:

Performance measures 2019-20 target
The number of workers registered under
the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme
75,000
The number of employers registered under
the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme
4,000

At an operational level, the Authority has developed a set of initiatives, activities and other supporting key performance measures that will monitor the progress of key activities within the Authority. These are in the Appendix. In the setting of these initial targets, the Authority has also considered the risks to the achievement of these objectives. This process is iterative and will continue to be refined during the first year of the Authority’s operations.


Resources - Financial

An overview of the Portable Long Service Authority's financial resources.

Financial strategy

For the 2019-20 financial year, the Authority will be fully funded from Government grants to support the initial establishment of the Authority.

Ongoing financial sustainability will be achieved through an administration charge to the Scheme. Employers and eligible workers will not be required to pay a separate amount other than their levy rate contribution. The levy rate is necessary to ensure the sustainability of the Scheme as the liability for long service leave increases and accumulates over time.

Key financial assumptions

The 2019-20 Statement of Financial Performance budget is based on the following assumptions:

Revenue

  • The levy rates set at 1.65% for the Community Services sector, 1.80% for the Contract Cleaning sector and 1.80% for the Security sector are maintained for the full financial year.
  • There are no revenue transfers within the portfolio on a $ per worker basis for operational expenses within the operating account during the 2019-20 financial year.

Expenses

  • CPI increase per year.
  • Costs are based on known contractual amounts where available but have been estimated using best available information for forecast costs.

Summary Financial Performance for 2019-20

Overall the Authority is budgeting a neutral result for the 2019-20 financial year. One of the objectives of the Authority in the first year of operations is to register as many eligible employers into the Scheme as possible. This will ensure that levy contributions flow into the Scheme to support the long service leave liability of registered workers.

The 5-year revenue and expense budget outlook is as follows:

Performance measures 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21 2021-22 2022-23 2023-24
Revenue ($)

1,819,826

5,300,688

5,240,105

6,269,578

6,243,417

6,373,262

Expenses ($) 301

6,003,945

6,055,621

6,269,578

6,243,417

6,373,262

Net result ($)

(1,518,773)1

(703,257)1

(815,516)1

- -
No. of workers 75,000 88,268 115,247 156,094 164,459
Cost per worker ($) 51.88 53.15 40.17 38.75

The projected surplus result for the 2019-20 financial year represents unspent amounts from government’s initial contribution to establish the Authority and will be used to provide offset funding in the first two years of Scheme operations until the Authority becomes financially independent.

The financial performance of the Authority as well as the Scheme assets of the Authority are also subject to annual audits by the Victorian Auditor General’s Office.


Appendix

Overview of the Portable Long Service Authority's operational key performance measures.

Objective Strategy/Initiative Activity Outcome Measures
Fulfil our legislative obligations by effectively administering and supporting compliance with the Long Service Portability Act 2018 (Vic)(the Act).
  • Implement a sound internal understanding of our obligations through an effective corporate Compliance Framework.
  • Facilitate an effective, diverse and strategic Governing Board.
  • Establish a well-functioning, committed and capable Management team and staff and who collaborate in a holistic and collegiate manner.
  • Establish effective systems and processes to give effect to the PLSA’s obligations.
  • Implement a robust Complaint Handling Framework.
  • Facilitate a sound external understanding of compliance with the Act and enforce those obligations using an effective external Compliance Framework.
  • Ensure policies and procedures and other internal controls are in place which facilitate compliance with our obligations.
  • Ensure the Secretariat communicates effectively and in a timely manner.
  • With training, ensure all staff understand their part in helping the PLSA to comply with its obligations.
  • Set up effective ‘back office’ systems, policies and procedures.
  • Ensure all engagement is recorded accurately and stored in accordance with PLSA Records Management Framework.
  • PLSA is compliant with its legislative obligations.
  • The Governing Board is established and meets and operates in accordance with its obligations and Governing Board Charter.
  • Authority Staff and Management understand and effectively execute their legislative obligations.
  • PLSA records and resolves complaints in accordance with our Complaint Handling Framework.
  • Authority decisions are made in accordance with the Act and internal policies and procedures.
  • Eligible Workers are aware of their rights under the legislation.
  • There is accurate information on scheme coverage.
  • Positive reports from external regulators and auditors
  • Minimal or no unresolved complaints from stakeholders.
  • Governing Board makes decisions in a timely manner.
  • Compliance staff attend regulator forums and training.
  • Compliance actions do not fail on procedural grounds.
  • Website and supporting material clearly outline avenues of redress.
  • Positive audit of the PLSA Records Management Framework.
Implement effective responsible budget and investment strategies which grow levy funds and deliver long-term sustainability.
  • Implement a 5-year strategic budget.
  • Implement a Governing Board-endorsed Investment Strategy Policy.
  • Investment strategy and performance is monitored and reviewed annually.
  • Governing Board endorses a 5-year operational budget.
  • Develop policies and procedures to manage the investment portfolio in accordance with risk and return profile outlined in the Investment Strategy Policy.
  • Actuarial review completed each year.
  • Ensure each scheme has adequate assets to meets it future member liabilities benefits.
  • Investment of funds creates a long-term surplus of assets over liabilities.
  • The PLSA has a good reputation in managing the scheme funds.
  • Ensure maximum number of eligible employers are registered and paying the levy.
  • Administration charge to each scheme less than $50 per worker.
  • Sufficient headroom in actuary review.
Be clear, consistent, transparent and responsive in our stakeholder communications which encourages registration and levy payments and ensures that eligible workers and employers are aware of their rights and obligations.
  • Look for opportunities to proactively communicate with stakeholders.
  • Develop excellence in stakeholder interaction.
  • Staff are trained to be as effective when in the field as in the office.
  • Ensure sound legal advice is obtained.
  • Develop and execute long term Communications Strategy.
  • Effective staff training, mentoring and monitoring of engagement.
  • Efficient allocation of staff and resources to outreach activities.
  • PLSA messaging and education about obligations reaches the maximum number of employers and eligible workers possible.
  • The needs of employers and eligible workers are met.
  • PLSA has a monitoring mechanism to analyse PLSA interaction with stakeholders to inform service delivery improvements.
  • 75,000 workers registered with the PLSA by the end of 2019-20 (BP3 measure).
  • 4,000 employers are registered with the PLSA by the end of 2019-20.
  • Stakeholders provide positive feedback about their interaction with the PLSA.
Maintain a healthy and safe workplace with a culture that encourages engaged, resilient and solution-focused staff.
  • Ensure facilities are safe and fit-for-purpose.
  • Design, write and implement required HR and WHS Policies and associated processes.
  • Build a culture that is collegiate, effective and values-based.
  • Identify and recommend appropriate HR/Payroll/WHS systems.
  • Ensure there is a fit-for-purpose training plan.
  • Routinely consider workplace physical and psychological risks and implement appropriate controls to mitigate and manage them.
  • Participate collaboratively with other Government departments, agencies and vendors.
  • Determine HR/Payroll/WHS systems requirements.
  • Source, develop and deliver fit-for-purpose staff training.
  • High priority policies and procedures written and approved.
  • Design and roll out Performance Development Plan (PDP) process across the Authority.
  • Conduct first employee survey across the Authority.
  • Establish WHS compliance requirements such as a risk register, Occupational Health and Safety Committee, first aid and floor wardens.
  • PLSA is compliant with employment and WHS related obligations.
  • Staff culture is positive, and staff have a willingness to work together to achieve outcomes.
  • Staff have an effective worker voice and adequate representation.
  • Engagement with the PDP process will allow performance to be assessed in a fair, consistent manner.
  • Learning and Development opportunities allow staff to effectively perform their roles.
  • Systems have been implemented that are cost effective and suitable for PLSA to enhance efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Data is gathered to establish a baseline and determine HR reporting requirements for future years.
  • WHS is monitored and regularly discussed with staff.
  • At least 80% rate of PLSA employees complete employee survey.
  • Staff turnover metrics.
  • 100% of staff complete Performance Development Plans.
  • At least 80% of staff complete staff learning and development sessions.
Implement innovative, secure, resilient and integrated information technology environment that supports effective operations now and into the future.
  • Utilisation of technology that enables our objectives.
  • All prudent practices are utilised in the protection of data and privacy.
  • The right data is accessible to authorised staff.
  • PLSA takes all reasonable precautions to protect its network and information sources from cyber attack and data breaches.
  • PLSA conforms to all applicable cyber security, privacy and data protection regulations and guidelines.
  • Implement robust IT governance frameworks.
  • Complete Enterprise Architecture blueprint and roadmap.
  • Create IT Strategy in line with Corporate Plan, Enterprise Architecture and IT policies and procedures.
  • Evaluate and implement appropriate analytics platform.
  • Develop and communicate IT Change and Incident Management processes to all stakeholders.
  • Perform penetration testing and vulnerability assessments.
  • Provide staff training program on cyber security awareness.
  • Enhance Disaster Recovery capabilities.
  • Develop necessary IT policies and procedures.
  • Ensure records and document management processes conform to Public Records Office Victoria’s guidelines.
  • Up-to-date and accurate information is accessible to all authorised staff.
  • Data is kept and transported securely.
  • IT services are relevant, intuitive to use and meet business needs.
  • All IT service providers understand PLSA’s change and incident management processes.
  • End-to-end Disaster Recovery tests are performed.
  • PLSA has appropriate IT policies and procedures.
  • PLSA has a Records Management Framework with appropriate technology that is compliant with the Public Records Office of Victoria.
  • IT resources and budget are managed closely, achieving the best possible outcomes.
  • PLSA produces an IT Strategy and Enterprise Architecture which meets current and future business needs.
  • Fully resourced and costed Project Portfolio has been approved by the PLSA Executive.
  • IT changes and incidents are managed in accordance with agreed processes.
  • End-to-end Disaster Recovery test is performed successfully.
  • Required set of IT policies and procedures are understood by staff.
  • Repositories of PLSA’s records are compliant with the Public Records Office of Victoria standards.
Protect the long-term interests of the Authority through effective regulation using governance, strategic risk management and clear policies and procedures.
  • Establish excellent governance practices to ensure the integrity, accountability and reputation of the PLSA.
  • Implement effective corporate planning process, performance management framework and annual reporting process that ensures public accountability and transparency of the Authority’s performance.
  • Ensure appropriate governance oversight through the Audit and Risk Committee.
  • Use risk management to make strategic decisions.
  • Implement, communicate and maintain key corporate policies and procedures.
  • Facilitate effective internal control and risk-based internal audit program.
  • The PLSA can demonstrate that governance and risk management responsibilities of the Governing Board are being effectively controlled and discharged.
PLSA:
  • produces a Corporate Plan
  • has a performance management process 
  • produces an Annual Report and 
  • undertakes other reporting
  • in compliance with its obligations.

Structure and key relationships

Overview of the structure and key relationships of the Portable Long Service Authority.

Governing Board and Chief Executive Officer/Registrar

The Portable Long Service Benefits Authority has a Governing Board comprising a mix of expert skills, qualifications and experience including individuals from organisations who represent employers and workers in the three covered industries.

Our Governing Board members are:

  • Mr Julius Roe, Chair
  • Ms Claire Filson, Deputy Chair
  • Ms Emma King
  • Ms Kate Marshall
  • Mr Tim Piper
  • Ms Rachaell Saunders
  • Ms Julie Warren
  • Ms Linda White
  • Mr Joseph Yeung, CEO and Registrar

Governance structure

  • Role Member
    Minister for Industrial Relations Tim Pallas

  • Role Member
    Governing Board Chair Julius Roe
    Governing Board Deputy Chair Claire Filson
    Victorian Council of Social Services Emma King
    Health Services Union Kate Marshall
    Australian Industry Group Tim Piper
    National Protective Services Rachaell Saunders
    National Union of Workers Julie Warren
    Australian Services Union Linda White

  • Role Member
    Chief Executive Officer Joseph Yeung
    Chief Financial Officer Peter Leersen

A flowchart of the Authority's governance structure can be found below. 

Business units within the Authority

PLSA icon executive governance secretariat
The Executive, Governance, Legal and Secretariat Business Unit is responsible for establishing good governance, delivering sound legal advice to the Authority as well as facilitating the efficient and effective running of the Governing Board and Audit and Risk Committee.
PLSA icon financial services
The Financial Services Business Unit underpins our organisation’s operations and the Chief Financial Officer who leads the Financial Services Business Unit has specific responsibilities under the Financial Management Act 1994 (Vic).
PLSA icon client services
The Client Service and Operations Business Unit is the largest business unit within the Authority and delivers our core Registry and Enforcement functions to the public.
PLSA icon facilities and technology
The Facilities, Information and Technology Business Unit underpins our core operations and manages key vendors which support our network infrastructure and telephony systems.
PLSA icon people and culture

Our people are our greatest asset. Without our people, we have no capability to fulfil our statutory obligations under the Act.

The People and Culture Business Unit supports the growth and development of our people and culture.

PLSA icon communications engagement

As a new scheme in Victoria, it is vital that we communicate and engage with employers and eligible workers across the covered sectors. It is equally important that as a regulator, we assist eligible employers and workers to understand their obligations under the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme.

The Communications and Engagement Business Unit has responsibilities to deliver these core functions.

Key stakeholders

The Portable Long Service Benefits Authority is accountable to the Minister for Industrial Relations.

Industrial Relations Victoria (IRV) in the Department of Premier and Cabinet is responsible for project management to establish the initial aspects of the Portable Long Service Benefits Authority. This work is being carried out progressively with the Authority. IRV will also be the departmental contact for ongoing relations with the Authority and the Governing Board.

The Portable Long Service Benefits Industry Working Group is a representative and advisory group and includes members from relevant government departments, unions, peak bodies and advocacy groups. It was set up specifically to shape and provide input into the legislation. This Industry Working Group is managed by the Department of Health and Human Services and provides industry links and helps to build support and participation within the community services sector,
contract cleaning and security industries. IRV, Department of Treasury and Finance and Department of Education and Training participate.

Eligible workers and employers in the community services sector, contract cleaning and security industries are key stakeholders as it is vital that they understand their rights and obligations under the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme. Other related key stakeholders include relevant unions and employer organisations.

The Authority liaises closely with the other agencies responsible for overseeing the integrity of Victoria’s industrial relations policy and initiatives:

  • the Wage inspectorate Victoria, operating as part of Industrial Relations Victoria, carries out a range of education, compliance, and enforcement functions relating to Victoria’s industrial laws, including child employment laws
  • the Labour Hire Authority, which is an independent body that regulates the new business licensing system for the provision of labour hire services to protect vulnerable labour hire workers from exploitation

The Authority has also developed close working relationships with its counterpart authorities in other Australian jurisdictions such as the Long Service Leave Authority established under the Long Service Leave (Portable Schemes) Act 2009 (ACT), a Scheme similar to Victoria’s Scheme operating in the Australian Capital Territory.

The Authority continues to build, strengthen and further develop relationships with stakeholders who are affected or have an interest in the Portable Long Service Benefits Scheme.


Resources – People

An overview of the Portable Long Service Authority's human resources.

The Authority forecasts 31 FTE in 2019-20. The below table is a graphic representation of the projected structure based on this forecast.

Portable Long Service Benefits Authority - Staff headcount by VPS Levels

VPS 2 VPS 3 VPS 4 VPS 5 VPS 6 STS Executive
9 9 3 1 5 1 2

Projected organisational structure

CEO/Registrar – Statutory Appointment

  • Executive Assistant to CEO and CFO  VPS 4

CFO - Financial Services - Executive

  • Finance Manager VPS 5
  • Finance Officer 2 x VPS 3

Head of Governance & Policy – STS

  • Principal Legal Advisor VPS 6

Operations Manager VPS 6

  • Team Leader 2 x VPS 4
  • Customer Service Officer 6 x VPS 3
  • Customer Service Officer 9 x VPS 2

Information Technology Manager VPS 6

  • IT Support Officer VPS 3

People and Culture Manager VPS 6

  • Learning and Development Officer VPS 4

Communications and Engagement Adviser VPS 6

A flowchart of the Authority's staff head count by VPS levels can be found below:

During the 2019-20 operating year, the Authority’s focus will be on:

  • building a work culture that is collegiate, effective and values-based
  • ensuring that staff facilities are safe and fit for purpose
  • designing health and safety policies and associated processes and
  • implementation of fit-for-purpose training plan to develop support and grow staff competencies

Reviewed 18 February 2020