APS Values, Employment Principles and Code of Conduct

APS Values (Section 10 Public Service Act 1999)

1. The APS Values are as follows:

  • Impartial: The APS is apolitical and provides the Government with advice that is frank, honest, timely and based on the best available evidence.
  • Committed to service: The APS is professional, objective, innovative and efficient, and works collaboratively to achieve the best results for the Australian community and the Government.
  • Accountable: The APS is open and accountable to the Australian community under the law and within the framework of Ministerial responsibility.
  • Respectful: The APS respects all people, including their rights and their heritage.
  • Ethical: The APS demonstrates leadership, is trustworthy, and acts with integrity in all that it does.

The APS Employment Principles (Section 10A Public Service Act 1999)

1. The APS is a career-based public service that:

  1. makes fair employment decisions with a fair system of review; and
  2. recognises that the usual basis for engagement is as an ongoing APS employee; and
  3. makes decisions relating to engagement and promotion that are based on merit; and
  4. requires effective performance from each employee; and
  5. provides flexible, safe and rewarding workplaces where communication, consultation, cooperation and input from employees on matters that affect their workplaces are valued; and
  6. provides workplaces that are free from discrimination, patronage and favouritism; and
  7. recognises the diversity of the Australian community and fosters diversity in the workplace.

The APS Code of Conduct (Section 13 Public Service Act 1999)

  1. An APS employee must behave honestly and with integrity in connection with APS employment
  2. An APS employee must act with care and diligence in connection with APS employment
  3. An APS employee must when acting in connection with APS employment, treat everyone with respect and courtesy, and without harassment
  4. An APS employee must when acting in connection with APS employment, comply with all applicable Australian laws. For this purpose, Australian law means:
    1. any Act (including this Act), or any instrument made under an Act; or
    2. any law of a State or Territory, including any instrument made under such a law.
  5. An APS employee must comply with any lawful and reasonable direction given by someone in the employee’s Agency who has authority to give the direction
  6. An APS employee must maintain appropriate confidentiality about dealings that the employee has with any Minister or Minister’s member of staff
  7. An APS employee must disclose, and take reasonable steps to avoid, any conflict of interest (real or apparent) in connection with APS employment
  8. An APS employee must use Commonwealth resources in a proper manner
  9. An APS employee must not provide false or misleading information in response to a request for information that is made for official purposes in connection with the employee’s APS employment
  10. An APS employee must not make improper use of:
    1. inside information; or
    2. the employee’s duties, status, power or authority in order to gain, or seek to gain, a benefit or advantage for the employee or for any other person
  11. An APS employee must at all times behave in a way that upholds:
    1. the APS Values and APS Employment Principles; and
    2. the integrity and good reputation of the employee’s Agency and the APS.
  12. An APS employee must while on duty overseas, at all times behave in a way that upholds the good reputation of Australia.
  13. An APS employee must comply with any other conduct requirement that is prescribed by the regulations.

Public Service Regulations 1999

2.1 For the purposes of subsection 13(13) of the Act an APS employee must not, except in the course of his or her duties as an APS employee or with the Agency Heads express authority, give or disclose, directly or indirectly, to any person any information about public business or anything of which the employee has official knowledge.