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Wednesday, 10 October 1973
Page: 1919

Mr James asked the Prime Minister, upon notice:

Do any Departments employ the simple method used by many industries, such as Broken Hill Pty Co. Ltd, in the use of a suggestion box so that any employee may make a written suggestion to improve a Department, or is the old method of submitting a report to superiors maintained which usually has a retardative effect on the employee desirous of improving efficiency.

Mr Whitlam - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The Public Service Board has advised me that departmental suggestions schemes operate under general principles laid down in the Board's General Orders. These include provision for officers or employees to put forward suggestions anonymously if they wish to do so.

The Board has encouraged departments to make arrangements for suggestions to be lodged directly with Staff Suggestions Committees, rather than with officers' immediate supervisors. Additionally, some departments provide suggestion boxes. An exhaustive survey of current departmental practices in this area has not been made, but it is known to be almost universal practice for suggestions to be evaluated by Staff Suggestions Committees.

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