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20 – What’s happening in Local government

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20 – What’s happening in Local government

What’s happening in Local government, and other useful things to know and do for all the employers, contractors and job seekers in the Spinifex community

Source: https://www.byron.nsw.gov.au/Business/Business-in-Byron/Tourism/Sustainable-Visitation-Strategy-2020-2030

Congratulations to Byron Shire Council and citizens for the development of a sustainable Visitation Strategy through its Talking Future Tourism engagement project.

The project won a Highly Commended award at the 2020 Local Government NSW Awards for its innovative citizen collaboration through visitor forums, kitchen table discussions, industry meetings and a community solutions panel (pictured above).

It’s just one of many examples of councils across NSW undergoing a culture shift in how they listen to and work with their community to drive progress.

This week we take a look at what that culture change means for local recruitment and jobs.

But first, let’s see what jobs are out there

Over the past week, we’ve listed a number of jobs in the following categories and locations across NSW. Over 27% of jobs listed are in the Construction & Trades sectors.

Top Ten Categories




Byron Bay




Coffs Harbour





Wagga Wagga


For more information, take a look at our current job opportunities

Also check out the Australian Government Jobs Hub

It’s all about the heart of a community

Tom Donohoe, our Northern NSW Regional Manager, shares insights on how councils are building resilience and fuelling progress with a diverse variety of skillsets

Source: https://clarencevalleynews.com.au/win-for-clarence-valley-councils-innovative-bushfire-communications-response/

There are 128 councils across NSW, around 55% in regional, rural, or remote areas. They employ 57,200 people, close to 10% of the total public sector workforce.

Whilst this is only around 10% of the total public sector workforce, councils arguably have the biggest impact on our day-to-day lives by delivering essential government services locally. Services such as:

  • Animal management

  • Arts and culture

  • Community events

  • Emergency management

  • Libraries

  • Parks, gardens and playgrounds

  • Planning and building approvals

  • Public health amenities

  • Roads, parking, footpaths and transport

  • Sport and recreation facilities

  • Stormwater drains

  • Tourism

  • Waste collection and recycling

“To deliver these services, local government offers a vast variety of jobs, with opportunities for people with different skillsets and experience,” says Tom.

“But it’s not just about delivering essential services. Councils are also focused on future risks and opportunities.

“Given the last few years of drought, fires, floods and now COVID, it is amazing to see the number of councils still passionately driving the cultural change within their workplace and the engagement with citizens they need to build resilience and create progress.

“Against the odds, their ambition for their local community has increased not diminished. They are working harder than ever to bring people together and make local communities stronger.

“You just have to take a look at some of the recent Local Government Award winners, to see the scope of initiatives and excellence in innovation, community leadership, citizen engagement and collaboration, particularly in regional areas.”

Recent NSW Local Government award winners include:

  • Bathurst Shire Council’s repurposing of local historical building to create a rail museum

  • Bryon Shire Council’s Talking Future Tourism for the Byron Shire Sustainable Visitation Strategy 2020-2030

  • Clarence Valley Council’s Communicating in Recovery program

  • Coffs Harbour Library Museum Gallery Project

  • Parkes Shire Council’s Apollo 11 Anniversary and Elvis Festival programs

  • Wagga Wagga City Council’s Cultural Plan 2020-2030 and Lost Lanes project

The challenges for local government human resource managers

“Councils are a very attractive place to work for people who want to make a difference in a very real, practical way and to see tangible outcomes for their local community,” says Tom.

“They are capitalising on what makes their local community unique, to attract people that are motivated by the same values and goals.

“They are also exploring new ways to engage and motivate a diverse culture which includes administration staff, tradespeople, facility operators, childcare workers, WHS specialists, scientists and project managers.

“This isn’t easy for them. They have to maintain a workforce that can meet day-to-day, around-the-clock demands whilst keeping an eye on the future which requires more long-term strategic skillsets.

“All this has to be done with robust transparency and accountability to rate payers, because good governance drives their reputation and standing in the community, which in turn enables them to get things done.

“In the sixty years Spinifex has been working with local government we have seen some seismic shifts in recruitment.

“Today, more and more councils are recognising that the recruitment process begins before a position must be filled.

“It’s about being a great employer, a great place to work, a place you are proud to work in; about seeing committed and dedicated staff working in partnership with citizens to create positive and sustainable change.”

Find out more about topics covered in this update:

Until next week, stay safe.


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