When you are considering moving on from the Queensland public sector to work for another organisation, you should be aware of the separation risks that may impact your ability to perform both your current and future positions.
The Code of Conduct not only informs how you act in the public interest in your daily work and decision making, but also extends to how you manage your interests as you leave the sector.
It does not matter if your new position is in the private, not-for-profit or external government sectors (“another employer”) and is temporary or permanent, you need to consider:
- if you will be exposed to any separation risks
- how your new employer might engage with Queensland Government agencies
- how you will manage separation risks.
What are separation risks?
There are three types of risks that you may be exposed to during pre-separation and post-separation from the Queensland public sector, as well as in any future lobbying activities you undertake as part of your new employment.
- you or other agency staff being improperly influenced or appearing to act with bias to the benefit of the other employer (before and after separation)
Conflicts of interest
- actual, perceived or potential conflicts of interest, especially interests relating to potential future benefits
- unauthorised dissemination of agency information, including commercial, sensitive or personal information provided to your agency in confidence or not otherwise publicly available—this includes proposals before the agency, as well as information protected by law or internal classification
- loss of materials, knowledge or intellectual property (whether spoken, written, electronic, mechanical, physical or visual) which are acquired, collected, developed or created by your agency and may have been:
- costly in terms of labour, time, resources or research (e.g. contracts, databases, contact or mailing lists, forms, processes and procedures, software, web resources, blueprints or working drawings, research products, teaching materials), and/or
- are unique or sufficiently aggregated so that they are an attractive resource to another employer which does not have the time or abilities to collect the information itself
- unauthorised dissemination of internal communications including emails and draft documents which have not been approved for publication, and that may result in a possible compromise of internal processes and deliberations
- loss of corporate knowledge and skills to other employers.
How might future interactions with Queensland Government agencies impact you?
It is important to be aware that there may be limitations on your future interactions with Queensland Government agencies if your new role or employer:
- operates in a related field of business or activity to your current or previous agencies
- receives contracts, funding, loans, guarantees or capital assistance from or through your current agency (or brokers any such funding to a wider market)
- operates in commercial competition with your agency
- comes under the licensing, regulatory or auditing authority of your agency (or has that authority over your agency)
- deals with the agency in any other way
- engages in lobbying Ministers, Members of Parliament, or any Queensland Government agency.
How do you manage separation risks?
To understand your responsibilities at different stages of your separation from the Queensland public sector, and the steps you can take to manage your exposure to risk and protect the public interest, the following guides are available:
Remember that upon separation, your former colleagues within the Queensland public sector continue to be bound by the Code of Conduct and they must ensure any future interactions with you adhere to the code and protect the public interest.
Employees can seek advice about these matters from their manager or local HR team.
Public sector agency HR and IR practitioners may seek advice about these matters from the PSC advisory service.
Chief executives, senior executives and senior officers may contact the Queensland Integrity Commissioner for written advice about conflict of interest matters. However they are encouraged to first seek advice from their agency.