The Government remains firmly committed to reducing the use of consultants. Consultants should only be engaged when the required professional expertise is not available internally or cannot be provided in a more cost effective manner than can be obtained by engaging a consultant. You would be aware of the Treasury requirement to reduce expenditure on consultants by an amount of 25 percent across each agency (refer Treasurer's letter of 16 May 1995).
Guidelines which set out the key expectations of the Government in relation to the engagement and use of consultants, as well as advice concerning best practices, have recently been prepared by the Public Employment Office and will be forwarded to you shortly.
As outlined in these Guidelines, agencies are required to provide the Public Employment Office with brief information about all consultancy engagements each financial year. Provision of this information facilitates advice to Government about the use of consultants. In the meantime, I would appreciate an interim report of consultants engaged by your agency from 1 July 1995 to 31 January 1996. The details required are shown on the attached format. A separate return should be completed for each consultancy. Returns should be forwarded to Mr John Kelly, Commissionefts Office, Public Employment Office, Level 32, Governor Macquarie Tower, 1 Farrer Place Sydney, 2000 by 29 February 1996.
If you require further information on this issue please contact Ms Karen Howell, Manager, Management Information Services on (02) 228 4665.