The Role and Responsibilities of a Workplace Diversity Coordinator

Any agencies have appointed a workplace diversity coordinator. Their role and responsibilities will vary according to the nature, structure and size of an agency. Some agencies have a network of coordinators. Workplace diversity coordinators should be experienced and have the support of the Agency Head and executive.

Role and responsibilities

The role is to:

* articulate how workplace diversity can enhance the business performance of the agency;
* actively promote the benefits of workplace diversity, both for the agency and staff;
* gain an understanding of the workplace diversity needs of agency staff;
* help all staff to be aware of workplace diversity issues;
* advocate the inclusion of equity and workplace diversity issues on strategic planning agendas;
* promote the integration of workplace diversity issues in human resource policies and practices;
* develop, implement and monitor the workplace diversity program;
* monitor the agency's compliance with relevant laws and regulations;
* develop, implement and monitor the workplace diversity program; and
* keep senior executives informed about workplace diversity issues and about the effectiveness of the workplace diversity program.

It should be noted that these functions are not the sole responsibility of the workplace diversity coordinator. For example, it is critical that senior management articulate how workplace diversity can enhance the business performance of the agency and actively promote the benefits of workplace diversity. Senior management also has an important role to play in advocating the inclusion of equity and workplace diversity issues on strategic planning agendas.

Skills, knowledge and personal qualities

A workplace diversity coordinator needs to be familiar with the business and operational environment of the agency. Workplace diversity coordinators need to understand the legal framework surrounding workplace diversity in the APS. They should have up-to-date knowledge of workplace diversity issues and research. They should know about best practice and any recent developments which may affect their agency's policies, procedures and practices.

A workplace diversity coordinator needs well-developed facilitation and liaison skills, and strong analytical, management and communication skills. A workplace diversity coordinator should have a personal commitment to the APS Values and workplace diversity principles.

Support for the workplace diversity coordinator

Workplace diversity coordinators need support from senior management and the Agency Head. Responsibility for workplace diversity does not rest solely with the coordinator. Workplace diversity is a mainstream responsibility, which should be part of the agency's management systems and culture.

Workplace diversity coordinators should be encouraged to take advantage of training opportunities in order to keep up with current issues and policies.

The PSMPC organises a Workplace Diversity Coordinators' Network, which meets quarterly. The network helps members keep up to date on workplace diversity issues and share their experiences. A network newsletter is circulated to all members and draws their attention to new developments and resources.

Source : Australian Public Service Commission

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