Premier & Cabinet

Department of Premier and Cabinet Circular
2016-03 Department Liaison Officers (DLOs)

C2016-03 Department Liaison Officers (DLOs)


  • Department Liaison Officers (DLOs) are government sector employees assigned to Ministers’ offices from government sector agencies within Ministers’ portfolios.
  • The Department of Premier and Cabinet must be notified of all DLO assignments by emailing the notification form to [email protected], prior to commencement

Detailed Outline

The Minister may request that the government sector agency head assign a DLO to the Minister’s office. 

The role of the DLO is to provide the Minister’s office with a readily accessible source of knowledge and skills regarding the operations of the government sector agency within the Minister’s portfolio.

DLOs are distinguishable from other staff of Ministers’ offices, remaining employees of their home agency under their agency terms and conditions of employment.

The following guidelines apply to the assignment of DLOs to Ministers’ offices:

  • Payroll and leave administration for DLOs will be provided by the home agency, with leave and other matters affecting the performance of the DLO role considered in consultation with  the Minister's office.

  • Employee-related costs of DLOs are to be met from the budgets of home agencies. Other costs, for example, mobile telephone, office equipment, transport and accommodation for official business, are to be met from Ministers' office budgets.

  • During assignment to a Minister's office, the DLO's home agency Code of Conduct will continue to apply. DLOs must be politically neutral and impartial while assisting Ministers to achieve their objectives. They must also avoid party political activities in the performance of their duties.

  • DLOs should be identified by government sector agencies having regard to the skills, knowledge and experience required, in accordance with the relevant employment framework applying to the government sector agency.

  • Commencing DLOs should be advised in writing, and accept the terms and conditions applying to the assignment (for example, pay rate, employment status and end date). At the completion of a DLO assignment, ongoing agency staff return to a role in their agency at the same grade as they held prior to the assignment.

  • The duration of DLO assignments usually should not exceed 18 months, but longer assignments may be approved by the agency head.

  • DLOs may be assigned to perform administrative support roles, agency contact roles, or specialist advisor roles. For day-to-day management purposes, DLOs are supervised by the Minister's Chief of Staff. They must not to be issued with agency credit cards and must not exercise any agency financial delegations.

  • The Department of Premier and Cabinet must be notified of all DLO assignments.Notifications must include commencement date, employment status, salary, emergency contact details and end date (DLO Notification Form attached) Where a DLO assignment is extended beyond 18 months, the Department of Premier and Cabinet must be notified. Commencements, extensions and departures should be notified via email to [email protected].


Who needs to know and/or comply with this?

Executive agencies related to Departments
Separate agencies
State Owned Corporations
Statutory Authorities/Bodies
Subsidiaries of the NSW Government established under the Corporations Act



AR Details

Date Issued
Mar 3, 2016
Review Date
Mar 2, 2018
Replaced By


Contact us
02 9228 5555
Publishing Entity
Department of Premier and Cabinet
Issuing Entity
Department of Premier and Cabinet