Staff slightly happier

CONDITIONS at the City of Perth have improved slightly since the council’s suspension in 2018, but staff are still reluctant to recommend it to other workers.

The latest staff satisfaction survey found 69 per cent considered the council an “excellent”, “good”, or “okay” place to work; up from 63 per cent in 2020. 

But only 14 per cent would recommend it as a workplace to others, citing the lack of career progression opportunities, messy policies and processes, and poor handovers which left new staff in the lurch.

In August 2020 a state government inquiry warned the council it had to improve its workplace culture, or risk staff dissatisfaction, power struggles between departments, and senior staff too timid to speak up about rule-flouting councillors.


The current council got a look at the scorecard this week. They’ve had nearly two years in the job to improve things, and mayor Basil Zempilas said: “I think we have done a significant body of work already and I think there’s been great improvements.

“We are heading in the right direction – they are the best results that the City of Perth has scored under this reporting methodology in the history of these being done,” he said.

“That dates back to 2017 – we’re not at the end of our journey, but we’re on our way.”

CEO Michelle Reynolds will now work with her senior team to focus on the key complaints and report back to council in six months on how they’re going to improve the scores.

Many Australian councils get the same Catalyse staff surveys, but Perth’s rare in publicly sharing the results.


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