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The Australian Public Service Employment Database (APSED) stores the employment data of all current and former APS employees. APSED is maintained by the Australian Public Service Commission and the data is supplied to APSED from the HR systems of APS agencies.

Why is APS employment data collected and how is it used?

The Public Service Commissioner has been given certain functions under section 41 of the Public Service Act 1999. To perform these functions the Public Service Commissioner requires agencies to supply data to the APSED. This data is then used to compile reports and evaluate the state of the APS.

Each financial year the Public Service Commissioner reports to Parliament on the state of the APS. The overall purpose of the State of the Service (SOS) Report (including workplace diversity) and the APS Statistical Bulletin, is to maintain public confidence in the integrity and accountability of the APS. Employment data is an important input to the SOS Report. The SOS Report contains aggregated statistics and individuals are not identified.

Information on staffing, including trends in the size, structure and composition of the APS, contributes to research and evaluation work on the changing nature of the APS and the impact of people management policies on the structure of the APS. This, in turn, assists agencies to formulate their people management policies and practices.

The APS Employment Principles state that the APS is a career based public service that recognises the diversity of the Australian community and fosters diversity in the workplace. A new clause in the Australian Public Service Commissioner's Directions 2013 now provides that each agency head must ensure that measures are put in place in the agency to collect certain personal information from each employee of the agency and to provide that information to the Commissioner.

This new provision is aimed at improving the quality of data collected by agencies (particularly around disability and indigenous status, but also in relation to other matters such as educational qualifications) that is then stored in the APS Employment Database. Given the sensitive nature of this data, subclause 7.6(2) provides that in seeking the information, the agency measures must allow employees a "choose not to give this information" option (which can also be reported).

The collection notice for APSED can be found here.

Your privacy and APSED

Information outlining privacy provisions within APSED.

If you have any questions about the APS Employment Database, please contact the APSED project team:

  • David Judge ph 02 6202 3711
  • or email APSED [at] apsc.gov.au

Australian Public Service Employment Database internet interface (APSEDii)

The Australian Public Service Employment Database internet interface (APSEDii) is a dashboard presenting information on workforce characteristics of the Australian Public Service.

For information and access go to the APSEDii page.

APSED resources

APS Employment Database (APSED) specifications

The user manual and specifications are provided in MS Word and PDF formats.

Download the APSED manual in MS Word format

Download the APSED manual in PDF format.

Interface spreadsheet

We have developed a spreadsheet to assist agencies without an automated HR system that can interface with the APS Employment Database. The spreadsheet includes the facilities to produce both the snapshot and change data files in the required format. The spreadsheet also contains instructions on how to produce the snapshot and change files.

Download the Interface spreadsheet.

Validation tool

The APSED validation tool is an Excel utility (now includes an Excel2007 version) designed to assist agency contacts who send data to the APSC APSED database. The validation utility can be used to examine snap and movement '.txt' files for conflicts with the APSED specifications. The '.txt' files produced from the agency HR system should conform to these specifications so that the data can be read into APSED without error.

The validation tool can check for items which don't match the APSED specifications and notifies possible internal inconsistencies such as date of arrival in Australia being inconsistent with date of engagement.

Data problems revealed by the tool will need to be fixed in the HR system which produces the '.txt' file output.

The download contains the Excel validation utility, manual and test file. The example file allows users to familiarise themselves with the operation of the system. Please read the manual before operating the utility.

If you have any problems with the utility please email apsed [at] apsc.gov.au at the Australian Public Service Commission.

Download the Validation tool.

Equity and diversity questionnaire

A template questionnaire that can be used by agencies to collect the equity and diversity data required for APSED.

Guidelines for issuing AGS numbers to non-Comsuper contributors

This guideline provides information on the issuing of AGSNs to APS employees. It distinguishes between when an agency can reuse the same AGSN and when an agency must issue a new one.

Find out more about the guidelines for issuing AGS numbers.

Last reviewed: 
13 August 2019