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We are working towards a more collaborative corporate culture

In November 2017 we surveyed our people about their experiences and perceptions of working in MSD. The survey was part of the culture programme that we launched in 2013. The results show that, in general, our culture has remained stable since the last survey was conducted in 2015. This is a positive outcome given the amount of change we experienced over the past year.

Themes from the 2017 survey have helped highlight areas of focus such as:

  1. all our people being clear about what is expected of them and knowing that they shape and contribute to our outcomes
  2. strengthening the linkages between our people’s employment experience (our people thriving every day) and the outcomes we seek for New Zealanders
  3. aligning all our people with a shared set of values that connect us to Te Pae Tawhiti and to an organisation that we are proud to work for.

The survey also highlighted that there is still work to be done to increase alignment across MSD to achieve the desired organisational culture.

Our governance arrangements support whole-of-organisation leadership and decision-making

Our Leadership Team is made up of our Chief Executive, five Deputy Chief Executives, and the Director of the Office of the Chief Executive. These leaders have collective responsibility for ensuring our organisational health, capability and capacity to deliver services and achieve outcomes.

In 2017/2018 three governance sub-committees of the Leadership Team supported strategic decision-making across the organisation:

  1. the Organisational Integrity and Capability Governance Committee is responsible for ensuring we function optimally, complies with all requirements, and takes a strategic approach to ensuring we have optimal capability
  2. the Investment Strategy Governance Committee is responsible for ensuring we invest strategically in the right things to achieve outcomes, and receive the benefits of our investments
  3. the Organisational Performance Governance Committee is responsible for ensuring we track progress against outcomes and priorities to inform future decisions.

Each committee meets regularly and comprises senior officials at Deputy Chief Executive and General Manager level.

We take privacy and security of information seriously

We collect a large amount of data and information from our clients, and from contracted service providers, community organisations and other agencies, every day. This comes with a responsibility to use the data with care, to respect the rights of individuals whose information is collected, and to apply consistent moral and ethical standards.

Responsible Information Use

To enable this, we have established a Responsible Information Use project, with two key workstreams: a Privacy, Human Rights and Ethics (PHRaE) framework, and the Openness and Transparency project.

The PHRaE framework will enable projects to meet our legal and ethical responsibilities around responsible information use, by ensuring that the privacy, human rights and ethical risks associated with personal information use are managed appropriately at an early stage in the development of new initiatives. PHRaE comprises a set of materials, including guidance documents and an interactive tool. We have developed an online prototype of PHRaE, and in 2018/2019 we will pilot the prototype with key internal and external stakeholders before implementation.

We have made a commitment to be more transparent about how we use the personal information we hold. While we have several ways we tell people about what we do with their information, we tend to use generic descriptions. Under our Openness and Transparency project, we have developed a Privacy Notice that describes how we use personal information. The Privacy Notice outlines what information we collect from people and why, who or where we collect it from, who we share it with and why, and what we do with it.

We have also developed simpler explanations for where we use algorithms to inform our services. We are testing these with stakeholders to ensure that what we publish is fit for use. For example, we currently use algorithms to refer school leavers to the Youth Service, and to direct people to case management services.

Ensuring our people understand the importance of keeping information safe

We follow systems to ensure we handle people’s personal information securely and sensitively, and only share it as necessary and in accordance with information security principles.

We are making it easier for our people to understand the value of client information and the importance of keeping it safe and secure. As part of our Information Management Strategic Framework (IMSF), we provided our people with a toolkit called iSafe, which covers information security, IT security, privacy and information management, and gives them practical and appropriate advice for handling client information.

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